Planning for Retirement
Published 8:30 am Sunday, April 30, 2023
Do you have a retirement plan? It is never too early or too late to plan for your future. Even if you don’t have a plan in place, taking small steps now can make a big difference for your future retirement. Benefits.gov can help you plan and find retirement benefits. This article will share tips for savings and benefits that may be able to help you through retirement.
What should I do first?
Start saving money. If your employer offers a retirement savings plan, like a 401(k), sign up and contribute what you can. If your employer does not offer a retirement plan, you can put money in an Individual Retirement Arrangement (IRA). An IRA allows you to save money for retirement in a tax-advantaged way. Click here to read more about IRAs. These accounts will help you make sure you have enough money to live comfortably when you stop working.
What are Social Security retirement benefits?
The U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA) manages Social Security retirement benefits. The monthly payments are based on how much you earned when you worked. Social Security payments can help in retirement, but it may not be enough to cover all your expenses. SSA’s retirement estimator tool can estimate how much you will get in benefits at different ages. This will help you find out how much other retirement income you will need.
Am I eligible for Social Security retirement benefits?
When you work and pay Social Security taxes, you earn credits for Social Security benefits. The number of credits you need to get retirement benefits is based on when you were born. If you were born in 1929 or later, you need 40 credits. Usually, this is 10 years of work. If you never worked, you may be able to get spouse’s retirement benefits if you are at least 62 and your spouse gets retirement or disability benefits. Visit SSA’s online application page to apply for Social Security benefits. If you need help, use the Field Office Locator to find your local office phone number.
When should I retire?
Choosing when to retire is up to you and will depend on your financial situation. You will receive less in your Social Security benefits if you retire before full retirement age. You can start receiving benefits at age 62 or as late as age 70. Find your full retirement age in the retirement age chart.
Are other benefits available?
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) helps people with little or no income and who are 65 or older, blind, or have a disability. SSI benefits are paid monthly. The amount you get is based on your income, living arrangements, and other factors. Click here to find out how to apply for SSI.
You may be eligible for benefits from the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) if you are a federal employee. Eligibility is based on your age and years of creditable service. You can find your retirement age on the FERS information page. You’ll need to fill out Standard Form 3107 to apply for benefits from FERS. You’ll submit the application to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management if you have been separated from federal service for more than 30 days. You’ll need to submit the application to your employer if you are still working.
To find out more about retirement benefits you may be eligible for check out the Benefit Finder. This tool will check your eligibility for over 1,000 government benefits. Share this information with your family and friends to help them plan for retirement.