We have been working with clients for over 7 years to help them attain the best benefit amount and income stream on their Social Security filing. Over and over when we ask if they plan to work after retirement the answer is “I don’t know”. We understand that after years of working, people are just ready to rest, maybe clean out their closets, travel, go fishing or whatever they desire, simply because they have earned it!!

But, if you are preparing to retire, and want to do some of the aforementioned activities, they cost money. The across the board desire is to not dip into that 401K or other savings unless absolutely necessary. A joke among people our age is to plan a big trip and tell all your friends that this year you are spending little Susie’s inheritance.

You are probably wondering where this article is going – there is a reason. In the last year, we have seen a different response coming from our clients about “after” retirement. On our application for services, we ask if you plan to work after retirement and how much you expect to earn. This question is necessary to determine Earnings Limitations if they are younger than Full Retirement Age. But, in the past, there was always a question mark by that question – not anymore.

People are planning ahead – they are looking for additional ways to earn money after retirement and have a plan set in stone. I am impressed!! When asked what they will be doing, it is usually something they always wanted to do only part-time. These opportunities do not fall from the sky – they required PLANNING. We encourage you to keep networking. Even though you cannot continue or do not want to continue working in your current position, your knowledge and experience count for something. Let those that you have worked with for years know of your intentions and let them work for you. Remember, it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.

Also, as we have said many times before, retiring and drawing Social Security are not synonymous. Just because you retire from your career does not mean you need to start drawing your benefits, unless of course the income is necessary. If you properly plan, you may have other options. One of these options just might be working part-time doing something you truly enjoy. By delaying drawing your Social Security you are not only increasing your future benefits by 8 percent per year (after Full Retirement Age to age 70) and increasing the Survivor Benefit.

One of the things that a professional review accomplishes is that it causes people to think … think about things they may not have realized on their own. PLANNING your retirement should start at least two years before you anticipate leaving your career. Sometimes you don’t have this luxury, but this is best case scenario. Then you can review your Social Security options, meet with a professional about your Medicare options, meet with a Financial Planner about your 401K or other assets and basically get your “ducks in a row”. Take this advice to heart – it matters!

Pillars LLC is in the Corinth, MS area but service all 50 states. Roy and Diane are both National Social Security Advisors and Roy is a former CPA of over 40 years. You may contact them at dthompson@pillarsllc.com, on their website at www.pillarsllc.com or call at 601-954-0699.

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