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Tips To “Customize” Your Social Security Benefits

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Tips To “Customize” Your Social Security Benefits

April is National Social Security Month. It’s a perfect time and opportunity to discuss the advantages of “customizing” your social security benefits. Everyone needs to know what the social security benefits are so you can prepare for retirement. Since baby boomers are now living even longer than their parents, there is often a need to utilize any advantages available.

Each one of us and each couple has unique needs and circumstances that impact your retirement. These factors determine when you can retire. It is imperative to understand that just because your friend started receiving benefits at 62 doesn’t mean that is what is best for you. If you can wait until 70, it could make a big difference. You need to know your options and realize that you can utilize your social security benefits. Every person needs to begin receiving benefits at the optimal time.

Social Security Benefit Options For Baby Boomers

The baby boomers now include nearly 76 million people. This generation is a growing population as more baby boomers turn another year older and live full lives. There are options available regarding when a baby boomer may want to begin taking social security benefits.

Partial social security benefits are also available, and you don’t have to wait until age 70. It’s a personal decision and depends on your unique circumstance and lifestyle. We cannot predict if we’ll live to 90 or 100 so deciding when to apply for benefits is tricky and there’s no textbook answer. Social security benefits can be confusing to understand, and there are experts available to talk with as well as excellent books to read on the subject.

Your unique circumstance

  • When to retire
  • When to begin receiving benefits
  • How long to keep working and earning income
  • Need MORE than Social Security in this economy
  • Need additional retirement plans or income

Too many retirees find themselves living in poverty, especially unmarried women over the age of 65. Sometimes this is because of unforeseen events that happen and sometimes it is lack of preparation.

Qualifying for Social Security Benefits

To qualify for benefits, a person needs to earn $5,200 per year for at least a decade. Payment amounts are based on earnings over a lifetime. You can view your social security earnings at

“Your Social Security Retirement Toolkit”

Here’s a book that could provide insight into your maximizing your social security for your retirement. It is by author: Donna Davis and the title is “Your Social Security Retirement Toolkit.” The ebook version is a wise investment at only $8.99, and the hardcover is $11.99. Both are available at

This book is the author’s third published work, and this one was published in 2017. This book can help you know what your benefits are as you make your educated decisions. The author is a baby boomer and knows first hand how to help answer the necessary questions.  Her first book was written in 2014. It was a retirement financial primer titled “Retirement Basics” which is out of print. It has been replaced with a book titled “New Retirement Basics” which she released in 2015. She is currently retired and walking the walk of retirement and being prepared through answering her questions and creating a retirement plan that fits her unique circumstances and needs.

It is essential to be prepared for retirement and one of the great ways to be sure you’re doing all you can is to begin educating yourself about the social security benefits. They are available and can be “customized” for your situation. Remember not to start receiving benefits when your friend does as does as it may not be what is best for you.

After Fifty Living™ was founded by Jo-Anne Lema, a genuine Boomer and member of the 50+ generation. As she likes to say, “Our enormous generation is charting new territory – we’re healthier, better educated, and more financially fit than any other generation at this time. And, as we march through history, 110 million strong – unique, new issues are developing. It’s exciting to be a part of the development and growth of This is a historic solution for a historic generation.”

Jo-Anne spent many years in the financial and operations side of higher education after having received a doctorate in education management and administration from Harvard, and an MBA from Southern New Hampshire University. Launching out on her own, though, has been the fulfillment of a life dream. Jo-Anne believes that “AfterFiftyLiving™ will delight its visitors, catalyze its partners, and will significantly benefit those who engage it.”

Residing in New England along with her husband of 35+ years, she never ceases to brag about her two children and 4 grandkids!

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