While retirement sounds like an absolute dream, getting there can often feel a little stressful. Are you saving enough? How much do you really need? Will the market be favorable when you do? And, the big one: When can you actually retire?
Narrowing down the best time, or really the best age, for you to retire comes with a lot of considerations, especially what sort of lifestyle you want to have in retirement. So, we’ve put together this list of the pros and cons of retiring at different ages to help guide you to your ideal retirement window.
Retire Before Age 65
Retiring before age 65 is traditionally “early” and is what most of us would like to do. However, the Center for Retirement Research data shows that most Americans retire before or at age 65 with men retiring at an average age of 65 and women at an average age of 62. But is an “early retirement” right for you?
The two biggest advantages are that you are likely to have more energy and better health at a younger age. Plus, shifting from a full workday to either a part-time job, monetizing a hobby, or finding volunteer opportunities can help make the retirement transition easier.
Your retirement funds will also have to last longer if you retire early. Leaving behind your career and what are probably your highest earning years early will mean you could be leaving however many years of potential retirement savings (and potentially an employee match) behind. Plus, while you are eligible for Social Security at age 62, your monthly amount will be less if you don’t wait until you are old enough for your full benefit. And, finally, you will need to have a plan for health insurance since you won’t be able to get Medicare until age 65.
Retire Between Ages 66 and 70
Sixty-five has been viewed at the age of retirement since Social Security was established. However, as of 2022, Social Security views the full retirement age at 66 for those born between 1943 and 1959 and at the age 66 plus a few months depending on your exact birth year if you were born between 1955 and 1959. For anyone born after 1960, the full retirement age is 67.
Getting a few more years of savings and investing on top of waiting until you are eligible for both Medicare and your full Social Security benefit can make a huge difference in your finances. Private insurance premiums and prescription co-pays are not cheap after all. Plus, you paid into Social Security all of those years. So even if you have a pension and other retirement savings accounts, waiting just a few more years to get your Social Security benefits will ensure you get the full amount you are eligible for.
Well, you saw the data above. Most Americans aren’t waiting to age 66 to retire and most don’t want to. So waiting those extra years could feel like you’re back in school waiting for that last month of school to get over.
Retire at Age 70 and Older
If you’re in the group of folks who have to wait until 67 to get their full Social Security benefits, waiting just another couple years may not seem too bad. But is there anything to gain or lose?
Some folks just love their work and feel like they would be lost without it. And that’s OK! So continuing to work longer may be better for you mentally and emotionally if you fall into that category. Plus, if you wait until age 70 or older to start taking your Social Security benefits, your payout will be the highest on top of the extra years of retirement savings and investing. You may never have to worry about having enough money in retirement.
You will not be able to predict what your energy level or overall health will look like as you get older. Your health could start declining before you retire or after. You could be giving up the opportunities to travel or do other things you enjoy that you always planned to do in retirement if you wait. Even if your nest egg is larger, you could end up not having enough time to use it.
Finding the Right Answer
There is not really a right or wrong answer to when you should retire. Each person and your unique circumstances can change and so can the financial landscape. Many of our clients even benefit from doing a “test run” on their retirement plan before they actually leave work to see if this changes their perception of their need. Either way, we encourage you to lean on an expert to help guide you to a retirement plan that works best for you.
At Platt Wealth Management, we empower our clients to lead their best lives by providing them with the financial expertise they need. We help our families think through their goals, and even dreams they never thought possible. Then, we work together to put in place financial options that give them peace of mind. Schedule a call with our team today to discuss your opportunities.
Are you on track for retirement?
Making sure you will be ready for retirement can be overwhelming. Funding your retirement accounts over the years is a critical part of your journey to the retirement of your dreams. An experienced Financial Advisor can help you navigate the complexities of investment management. Talk to a Financial Advisor>
Dream. Plan. Do.
Platt Wealth Management offers financial plans to answer your important financial questions. Where are you? Where do you want to be? How can you get there? Our four-step financial planning process is designed to be a road map to get you where you want to go while providing flexibility to adapt to changes along the route. We offer stand alone plans or full wealth management plans that include our investment management services. Give us a call today to set up a complimentary review. 619-255-9554.