I know that social security is an important part of the finances of many a retiree. When older, it can help to have all the cash flow you can muster up.
It’s quite a long way ahead for me, and retirement isn’t going to be coming anytime soon. I’m nowhere near the age of being eligible for any social security benefits, and that’s fine with me! Sorry, I hope that doesn’t sound crass in any way, but every day I get older I truly appreciate each one as special.
So while it’s far away, it’s not too early to be thinking about retirement. After all, we should be saving for retirement from when we start working. It makes sense to think about what our sources of income will be, especially since we won’t be working then. In the spirit of multiple streams of income, social security can certainly fit that objective quite well.
The thing is, while I know it’s something that’s a critical element of cash flow for many people, I don’t want to count on it in the future. It’s one of those things that simply isn’t directly under our control. What if there are some unforeseen, extenuating macroeconomic or political circumstances in the future that result in benefits being curtailed? Or, simply eliminated?
Just like with any other planning, there is a time and place for optimism. There is also a time and place for conservatism in making assumptions. I’d rather make any and all plans based on no social security benefits forthcoming. If anything does come my way, it will be considered a great bonus.
If you’re closer to retirement age, then there’s probably more reason to be comfortable counting on the income. But the longer the time horizon, might as well just pretend social security doesn’t exist. Don’t worry about what’s being deducted from your paycheck 🙂
My Questions for You
No matter what your time horizon is until retirement, do you factor in social security? Why or why not?
What do you think social security might look like years down the line?