You can see that Social Security represents only a small portion of a high-income worker's pay. Those making $125,000 a year will get less than 30% of their pre-retirement income replaced by Social Security.
If you make $120,000, here's your calculated monthly benefit
According to the Social Security benefit formula in the previous section, this would produce an initial monthly benefit of $2,920 at full retirement age.
Based on our calculation of a $2,790 Social Security benefit, this means that someone who averages a $100,000 salary throughout their career can expect Social Security to provide $33,480 in annual income if they claim at full retirement age.
2 To be eligible to receive the maximum benefit, you need to earn Social Security's maximum taxable income for 35 years. The cap, which is the amount of earnings subject to Social Security tax, is $147,000 in 2022, up from $142,800 in 2021.
We: Base Social Security benefits on your lifetime earnings. Adjust or “index” your actual earnings to account for changes in average wages since the year the earnings were received. Calculate your average indexed monthly earnings during the 35 years in which you earned the most.
The maximum benefit depends on the age you retire. For example, if you retire at full retirement age in 2022, your maximum benefit would be $3,345. However, if you retire at age 62 in 2022, your maximum benefit would be $2,364. If you retire at age 70 in 2022, your maximum benefit would be $4,194.
But if you can supplement your retirement income with other savings or sources of income, then $6,000 a month could be a good starting point for a comfortable retirement.
Key takeaways. If you claim Social Security at age 62, rather than wait until your full retirement age (FRA), you can expect a 30% reduction in monthly benefits. For every year you delay claiming Social Security past your FRA up to age 70, you get an 8% increase in your benefit.
At age 65: $2,993. At age 66: $3,240. At age 70: $4,194.
If you will reach full retirement age in 2022, the limit on your earnings for the months before full retirement age is $51,960. Starting with the month you reach full retirement age, you can get your benefits with no limit on your earnings.
Consistently Earn a High Salary
In recent years, you need to earn a six-figure salary to get a top Social Security payment. The maximum wage taxable by Social Security is $147,000 in 2022. However, the exact amount changes each year and has increased over time. It was $137,700 in 2020 and $106,800 in 2010.
Social Security benefits are based on the earnings on which people pay Social Security payroll taxes. The higher their earnings (up to a maximum taxable amount, $147,000 in 2022), the higher their benefit.
While everyone's income needs will differ, experts say the average retiree will need to replace around 80% of their pre-retirement income with savings and Social Security benefits. Therefore, someone with an annual salary of $150,000 would need around $120,000 per year to maintain their lifestyle in retirement.
Plan for Your Future with Your my Social Security Account
With your my Social Security account, you can plan for your future by getting your personalized retirement benefit estimates at age 62, Full Retirement Age (FRA), and age 70.
Can you retire on $500K plus Social Security? It's possible. But it'll require you to optimize your budget, investment returns, Social Security retirement benefits, and also coordinate a retirement income spending plan that minimizes taxes.
How can I retire with no money? Secure a Pension. A pension is a company-sponsored retirement plan that provides a guaranteed monthly income. Pension plans are often given to teachers, police and fire workers, federal and state employees, and military personnel.
You can get Social Security retirement or survivors benefits and work at the same time. But, if you're younger than full retirement age, and earn more than certain amounts, your benefits will be reduced.
Can You Collect Social Security at 62 and Still Work? You can collect Social Security retirement benefits at age 62 and still work. If you earn over a certain amount, however, your benefits will be temporarily reduced until you reach full retirement age.
Here's how much Americans have saved for retirement at every age. On average, Americans have around $141,542 saved up for retirement, according to the "How America Saves 2022" report compiled by Vanguard, an investment firm that represents more than 30 million investors.
Average Retirement Expenses by Category. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, an American household headed by someone aged 65 and older spent an average of $48,791 per year, or $4,065.95 per month, between 2016 and 2020.
What Is a Good Retirement Income? According to AARP, a good retirement income is about 80 percent of your pre-tax income prior to leaving the workforce. This is because when you're no longer working, you won't be paying income tax or other job-related expenses.
That's a myth: 62 is the earliest age you can claim your benefit, but it's not the only age to do so. Waiting to claim Social Security after age 62 comes with a bonus: roughly 8% additional monthly income per year for each year you delay claiming (up to age 70).
As such, while you can technically try to retire on Social Security alone, it's not advisable. A far better bet is to amass some level of savings so you have an additional income source to fall back on. If that's not possible, you can plan to work part-time in retirement to boost your monthly earnings.