SOCIAL SECURITY IN 2017: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

Social Security

Whether you’re planning on spending your hard-earned retirement nest egg traveling the world, playing as much golf as you can get in, or spoiling your grandchildren, there’s one thing you’ll have in common with every other retiree – you’ll need a solid retirement plan to make those dreams come true.

This can be a concerning idea for many people retired or planning to retire in the near future. We’ve met individuals who are too worried to let go of their careers, concerned about making ends meet, or scared of what should happen to their nest egg if their health fails as they get older. That’s why the most important thing you can do for your retirement plan is designing an income source that you can’t outlive. One of the many ways to design such an income source is making the most of your Social Security benefits.

Social Security requires planning. With the changes we’ve seen in the past and the troubling future ahead, it’s more important than ever to plan ahead for your benefits. The Social Security Administration recently made a few announcements concerning the changes to 2017’s Social Security benefits.

When You’ll Get Paid

One announcement was concerning the benefits payment schedule. This one won’t affect your income so much as your calendar but it’s still good to know. If your birthday falls between the 1st and 10th of the month, you’ll receive your benefit check on the second Wednesday every month. If you were born between the 11th and 20th, your benefits will be paid on the third Wednesday. Born between the 21st and 31st, you’ll receive your benefit on the fourth Wednesday.

Adjustments for Inflation

They also announced there will be a COLA (cost-of-living adjustment) this year but only a very disappointing 0.3 percent.

What does this mean for you?

A COLA of 0.3 percent means the majority of Social Security beneficiaries will see little to no increase in their benefits each month. After all, the average retirement benefit was recently recorded at $1,352 per month. That average beneficiary will only see their benefit increase by $4.06 per month. Not what I would call a substantial amount at all.

Since 1975, when COLAs were added to Social Security benefits for the first time, there have only been 3 years where we’ve seen Social Security have no COLA whatsoever. This is the lowest adjustment we’ve ever seen above a zero. In fact, the last 8 years have been disappointing. We’ve only seen an average adjustment of 1.1%.

So What Can You Do?

If you’re in your 60s and are starting to think about filing for Social Security, or you’ve filed within the last 12 months, call our office at (435)773-9444 and schedule a time to sit down with us. We can help you design a Social Security income plan that can help you be better prepared for your retirement years.