I’m Planning for No Social Security Benefits at All in Retirement. Here’s Why. | Smart Change: Personal Finance | #retirement | #elderly | #seniors
That said, Social Security will only replace about 40% of the average earner’s pre-retirement income — and that’s if benefits don’t get cut. Since a reduction in benefits is on the table, I don’t expect Social Security to go very far in helping me pay my bills. And rather than spin my wheels trying to estimate what my benefit might be whittled down to, I’d rather just aim to get through retirement without it.
2. I want to be motivated to save as much as possible
Writing off Social Security — which I did years ago — has lit a fire under me to ramp up on the savings front. For many years, I’ve been maxing out my 401(k) plan contributions plus buying stocks that I intend to hold for many years — ideally, into retirement if things work out. My goal is to save enough money to not even have to think about what my benefits look like — so by telling myself to forget about Social Security, I’m pushing myself to do better at saving and investing.
To be clear, there’s no reason for me to think I won’t get a dime from Social Security in retirement. But I’m not factoring that income into my plans. I figure whatever money I wind up collecting from Social Security can be regarded as bonus cash — money I can use to travel, rescue more dogs (a passion of mine), or donate to charities that mean a lot to me. But either way, I don’t want to have to concern myself with what Social Security’s cash flow looks like, so I’m instead focusing my energy on taking savings matters into my own hands.