Whether you spent cash or put your holiday gifts on credit in December, it’s always nice to receive good news on the financial front going into the New Year, and the Social Security Administration’s annual updates to benefits brings quite a bit of positive news for Baby Boomers in 2015.
Of the five changes announced in October, three will directly (and positively) affect retirees, or individuals who have reached retirement age and are already receiving Social Security benefits (Source: US News & World Report):
Cost of Living Increase
The amount beneficiaries receive is automatically adjusted each year to keep up with inflation, and 2015 is no exception. In the coming year, you’ll see 1.7% more in each check – basically $22 for an individual or $36 per couple, per month.
Larger Earning Limits
For individuals who already have begun receiving their benefits but also work, increased earning limits mean an opportunity to retain your existing benefit amount while earning up to $15,720 (up from $15,480 in 2014) annually at age 62, $41,800 (up from $41,400 in 2014) at age 66, and no limit for earnings after age 66.
Increased Maximum Benefit
For a worker who waits to receive benefits until full retirement age (age 66), maximum benefits increase $21 over 2014 figures, to $2,663, at which time you are also afforded unlimited earnings (see “Larger Earning Limits,” above) without penalty.
Changes also will affect individuals who have not yet reached the minimum retirement age (62):
Increased Tax Cap
Under 2014 guidelines, most workers pay 6.2% of each paycheck toward Social Security up to $117,000. In 2015, that cap will increase to $118,500. The changes will affect approximately 10 million of the 168 million workers who pay into Social Security each year.
Paper Benefits Statement
Until April 2011, workers received a paper Social Security earnings statement by mail every year. To save money, the Social Security Administration suspended this practice, but beneficiaries turning 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 55, or 60 in 2015 will receive their statement approximately three months prior to their birthday. Individuals may view their statement online at any time via socialsecurity.gov/myaccount.
Whether working full-time, part-time, or fully embracing retirement, Windsong homeowners enjoy the benefits of an Active Adult lifestyle in each community we build. Ranch homes in our communities are built with both comfort and efficiency in mind, combining spacious living and entertaining spaces and “flex spaces” (such as a home office, study, library, and more), with materials that are attractive, low-maintenance and energy efficient, adding up to significant savings in operating and maintaining your Windsong home.
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