With the vast majority of retirees relying on Social Security for most – if not all – of their retirement income, it’s crucial to maximize benefit potential. There are several factors that affect how much money one receives in Social Security benefits, with one of the biggest being age.
Fox Business conducted an in-depth look at Social Security benefits by age, and some of the findings may surprise you. As expected, the lowest payouts come at younger ages. For example, the average monthly benefit for someone at age 62 is $1,130. By age 70, the average monthly benefit jumps to over $1,600. Recipients in their early 70’s will slowly start to see their benefits decrease as they continue to age. One interesting finding was that average retirement benefits flattened out from age 83 on. This is largely due to women having a longer life expectancy than men and women, typically, receiving less in benefits because they earned less overall.
Seniors Deserve Bigger Benefits
A 2020 Gallup poll found that 89% of retirees rely on Social Security as a major or minor source of income – and 88% percent of future retirees say they expect to rely on Social Security to some extent. With so many people counting on Social Security to help fund their golden years, Fox Business laid out three ways to get bigger benefits: wait, work longer, or request a “do-over” if you recently filed for benefits. Unfortunately, these recommendations are geared towards future beneficiaries and aren’t possible for most current retirees.
The best way to help Social Security recipients right now is by passing the Social Security Expansion Act. This critical piece of legislation strengthens, protects, and guarantees seniors the Social Security benefits they earned.
When passed, this legislation will make four major changes to Social Security for retirees:
• Monthly benefits will increase by about $65 for most recipients
• The Consumer Price Index for the Elderly (CPI-E) will be used to calculate Social Security Cost-of-Living Adjustments (COLAs) instead of the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners (CPI-W) used currently. The CPI-E takes the unique spending habits of seniors into account — particularly regarding the cost of healthcare — and offers a more realistic COLA for retirees
• Minimum Social Security benefits will be increased thereby helping reduce senior poverty
• The long-term solvency of the Social Security program would be strengthened.