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Ed Meek
CEO/Investment Advisor

Edge Portfolio Management


State: IL

At Edge, a low client to advisor ratio allows for personal and customized service for each individual.  Our goal is to work as a team for each client to provide not only portfolio management but wealth coordination and financial planning.  We make every effort to have frequent communication with our clients and to provide timely response to calls and emails.  I also enjoy spending time with my wife and three kids, playing and following basketball, playing golf, and participating as an advisory board member for Breakthrough Urban Ministries.

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Affluent Investors Weigh Strategies to Claim Social Security Benefits

In deciding when to take Social Security benefits, as in comedy, timing is everything.

In deciding when to take Social Security benefits, as in comedy, timing is everything.

You can claim Social Security retirement benefits as early as age 62 or as late as age 70. Should you opt to receive benefits at the earliest possible availability? At your full retirement age? Or later?

According to Nolo,com, 60 percent of individuals claim their Social Security benefits at the earliest opportunity because they either need the money or they lack confidence that Social Security will be solvent over the course of their retirement years. The downside, though, is you will see a reduction in benefits. If your full retirement age is 66, the reduction of your benefits at age 62 is 25 percent; at age 63 it is about 20 percent; at age 64 it is about 13.3 percent; and at 65 it is about 6.7 percent, according to the Social Security Administration website.

If you were born after 1954 and you start your retirement benefits at 62, the reduction in your benefit amount can reach a maximum of 30 percent for people born in 1960 and later.

Claiming benefits at your full retirement age entitles you to full retirement benefits, but if you claim benefits after reaching your full retirement age, they will be increased by a certain percentage (depending on date of birth). For example, those born in 1948 or later will see a yearly increase of 8 percent. The benefit increase no longer applies when you reach age 70. 

Affluent investors surveyed by Millionaire Corner rely most on the Social Security Administration website to determine their full retirement age and for information about their benefits and the optimum age to claim them  What is their mindset regarding Social Security benefits if they take them::

·         As early as possible: Seventeen percent of Affluent investors overall plan to take their Social Security benefits as soon as they can. This option is most attractive to those surveyed who are already retired (28 percent) and those with a net worth between $100,000 and $500,000 (25 percent), or a household income of under $100,000. These groups may feel a more urgent need to gain access to their benefits as a source of income in retirement

·         At full retirement age: The highest percentage of Affluent investors (35 percent) said they intend to wait until their full retirement age to take their Social Security benefits.  Men are more likely than women to wait until they reach full retirement age (37 percent vs. 33 percent). Those with a 401(k) are also significantly more likely than those who do not to choose this option (40 percent vs. 26 percent) as are married couples compared to singles (37 percent vs. 27 percent), and those under 40 (41 percent) compared to their older counterparts.

·         Later, to maximize my benefits: One-third of Affluent investors plan to wait it out. Not surprisingly, the highest percentage of Affluent investors (42 percent) who said they would employ this strategy in taking Social Security benefits were those who self-report having the most financial knowledge. Those with the highest appetite for risk were more likely than more moderate or conservative investors to say they will wait until they are past their full retirement age to maximize their benefits (38 percent vs. 43 percent and 24 percent, respectively).

Fifteen percent of Affluent investors said they did not know when they plan to start taking Social Security benefits. Those most likely to respond this way were those between the ages of 41-50 (27 percent), those with the least confidence in their financial knowledge (23 percent), singles (22 percent), and women (18 percent).