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Are you a puppet for Social Security?

Doug Stardate
Social Security Puppet

It should come as no surprise that the government wants people to work, not start retirement or apply for social security until they are at least age 70. The longer people work, the fewer retirements years the government has to pay benefits.

To subtly encourage people to make the “right choice”, the government punishes or rewards the desired behaviour by decreasing or increasing social security benefits by age. Retiring at 66 or 67 will pay you the full benefits amount, depending upon your birth year, whereas retiring earlier then this means you will be receive less per month.

However, if you work until age 70, social security benefits are 32% more!

From the government’s point of view, this makes perfect sense. Statistically a 70 year old will live another 12-15 years, and this is the ideal number of years government actuaries have determined should be paid.

With close to 25% of workers saying they plan to retire at age 70 or older, the second largest age category, the government’s 32% social security bonus after age 70 must be working.

I question whether these people really want to work until age 70, or do they have no choice? My guess would be that most have no choice and if they had the funds they would retire earlier. Given sufficient funds, I bet most people would retire earlier.

Essentially the government is attempting to control how many years of retirement you get to enjoy.

I did notice an interesting coincidence when researching the retirement data.

Only 2% of the population retires before the age of 55. Since so few retire this young, there are very few stats available on these people. However, coincidentally, about 2% of the population have successful home based businesses.

Now I have no statistics that the 2% who retire early are the same 2% with home-based businesses, however I personally know many home-based entrepreneurs who retired before age 55. The bad news for men is that the majority of successful home-based business owners are women. And this is supported by the fact that 82% of women making over $100,000 per year do so with a home-based business.

I’m not saying that men can’t be successful in a home-based business: many of the highest income earners are men.  But for some reason, more women than men start businesses from home.  I have my suspicions why this is the case but I’ll leave that for another post (stay tuned!).

Six years ago I was laid off at age 53 so I didn’t technically retire, however I did start a home based business (well, 2 actually), and didn’t rejoin the 9-to-5 work force. So I’m going to count myself in the 2%.

If you want to be one of the 2% who retire early based on YOUR CHOICE of timing, there are options available. Just keep in mind that 98% of people will tell you it won’t work, so it’s your choice which group you want to be part of.

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