When to Take Social Security Benefits

Salvatore Pitti, CFP®, CRPS™, AIF® and Matthew Pitti, AIF® |

Deciding when to collect Social Security benefits involves various factors, and the best strategy depends on your individual circumstances. Here are 10 key considerations:

  1. Full Retirement Age (FRA)
  • Your FRA, the age at which you can receive full Social Security benefits, varies based on the year you were born. If you claim benefits before reaching your FRA, they will be reduced; if you delay beyond FRA, you may receive increased benefits.
  1. Early or Delayed Retirement
  • You can choose to start receiving benefits as early as age 62 or delay until age 70. Claiming early results in reduced benefits, while delaying can increase your monthly payments.
  1. Longevity and Health
  • Consider your life expectancy and health. If you expect to live longer, delaying benefits might make sense. However, if you have health issues or anticipate a shorter life span, claiming earlier may be preferable.
  1. Spousal Benefits
  • Married couples have various options, including claiming spousal benefits based on their partner’s earnings. Strategies may involve one spouse claiming benefits early while the other delays, or both delaying to maximize overall benefits.
  1. Work Status
  • If you continue to work while receiving Social Security before your FRA, your benefits may be reduced if your income exceeds a certain threshold. After reaching FRA, there is no earnings limit.
  1. Financial Need
  • Assess your financial situation and whether you need the income immediately. If you have other sources of income or retirement savings, you might have more flexibility in choosing when to claim Social Security.
  1. Tax Implications
  • Consider the tax implications of Social Security benefits. Depending on your income, a portion of your benefits may be subject to taxation.
  1. Consultation With Professionals
  • It’s advisable to consult with a financial advisor or a Social Security expert. They can provide personalized advice based on your specific financial circumstances and goals.
  1. Spousal Coordination
  • For married couples, coordinating your benefit strategies can be crucial. This may involve considering spousal benefits, survivor benefits, and the timing of each spouse’s claim.
  1. Maximizing Survivor Benefits
  • Delaying the higher-earning spouse’s benefits can maximize survivor benefits for the surviving spouse. This is particularly important for the long-term financial stability of the surviving spouse.

Consider Partnering With a Professional

Ultimately, the “best” time to collect Social Security depends on your unique situation. It’s crucial to weigh the various factors, consider your long-term financial goals, and, if needed, seek advice from financial professionals. Keep in mind that Social Security rules and regulations may change, so staying informed is essential.

If you’re looking for a partner to offer guidance on your financial journey, please get in touch! It’s our mission at The Pitti Group to create a path to fulfilling your life’s ambitions. To schedule a meeting, call (585) 337-4000 or email s.pitti@thepittigroup.com. I look forward to hearing from you!

About Sal

Sal Pitti is president and financial advisor at The Pitti Group Wealth Management, a boutique financial services firm with a deep breadth of capabilities and resources to help corporations, retirees, nonprofits, high-net-worth individuals, and professionals pursue their financial goals. The firm focuses on various aspects of investment planning and investment management; with 3 decades of experience in the financial services business, Sal loves seeing the end result after years of planning and the joy it brings to clients. He prides himself on providing a tight-knit, family-oriented team that truly gets to know clients. Always accessible, they’re continuously learning how to bring added value to clients.

After 22 years working for a large brokerage firm, Sal and his son, Matt, felt that the firm’s goals didn’t align with theirs and their clients, so they decided to become independent advisors and founded The Pitti Group Wealth Management in 2016. Sal is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ practitioner, Chartered Retirement Plans Specialist™, an Accredited Investment Fiduciary®, a graduate of the University of Maryland, Cum Laude, and holds a master’s degree in business management. He served in the United States Air Force working in the intelligence field, during which time he lived in and spent time in many countries, receiving numerous honors and awards during his tours. He has completed the Senior Financial Advisor program from the University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School, and also holds licenses for securities, insurance, and long-term care. Sal resides in Canandaigua and is very active in his community. He enjoys golfing, traveling, visiting beaches, spending time with family, and is an avid outdoorsman. To learn more about Sal, connect with him on LinkedIn.

About Matt

Matt Pitti is Senior Vice President and Wealth Advisor at The Pitti Group Wealth Management, a boutique financial services firm with a deep breadth of capabilities and resources to help corporations, retirees, nonprofits, high-net-worth individuals, and professionals pursue their financial goals. Matt has worked in the financial services industry for 20 years, and as an Accredited Investment Fiduciary® designee, his main priority is to place clients’ interests ahead of his own. He takes time to develop a detailed and customized wealth planning strategy to not only fit their needs today but help get them where they want to be in the future. His holistic approach encompasses many facets of financial planning to make sure their plan is the best solution for them. Matt also works as the advisor of several 401(k) plans to support plan sponsors, address their fiduciary responsibilities, as well as guide the employees in building individualized retirement plans.

After 10 years as an Associate Vice President at Morgan Stanley, Matt, his father, and staff founded The Pitti Group Wealth Management in 2016. Matt holds a degree in economics from the State University of New York at Cortland. In addition to his AIF® designation, he holds the Series 7, 31, and 66 certifications and a Life, Accident & Health insurance license. Residing in Penfield with his wife and two children, Matt proudly spends his free time watching his daughter’s dance competitions and his son’s travel baseball games. He also enjoys playing soccer, golfing, paddle, and is an avid outdoorsman. To learn more about Matt, connect with him on LinkedIn

The Pitti Group Wealth Management LLC (“the Pitti Group”) is a registered investment advisor. Advisory services are only offered to clients or prospective clients where the Pitti Group and its representatives are properly licensed or exempt from licensure. For additional information, please visit our website at https://www.thepittigroup.com/.

This information is general in nature and should not be considered tax advice. Investors should consult with a qualified tax consultant as to their particular situation.

All information has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but its accuracy is not guaranteed. There is no representation or warranty as to the current accuracy, reliability or completeness of, nor liability for, decisions based on such information and it should not be relied on as such.