As we reach retirement age, we have to decide when we want to apply for Social Security. However, there is one element that can completely ruin our retirement plan and greatly reduce the amount of our Social Security checks. This mistake is, precisely, not making any retirement plan at all. There is also the option of making a bad retirement plan. It is not possible to get a large Social Security benefit without a plan that helps to achieve this goal. That is what we must think about and what, in the end, we must do.
But this plan cannot start too late. This detail must be taken into account. We cannot plan for retirement when we are only 2 years away from asking for it. By the time we apply for Social Security, it is already too late to plan, so it must be done well in advance. The ideal is to prepare the plan 35 years before reaching the age of 67. This will ensure that we have the best possible retirement.
But there is one element that can completely ruin your Social Security retirement plan. We’re not talking about retirement age or years worked. We are talking, in this case, about salary as a worker. It is very common among American citizens not to think that the salary will influence the future SSA check and this makes the retirement plan end up being a real disaster.
Salary as a main pillar of Social Security
The final amount of your monthly Social Security check depends directly on the taxes you pay as a worker. For that reason, if your salary is higher, your retirement will be higher. Not all American workers take this into account. That is why the goal while we are working should be to get the highest salary possible. To do this you can always ask for a raise or change jobs.
The salary that is taken into account is that of the 35 years with the highest salary. Therefore, there is no need to worry if some years we have a lower salary. Social Security will end up being higher or lower depending on this detail. We must not forget that taxes are the fundamental basis of the system and that we must pay them every year. You can check through My Social Security how much money you currently have contributed.
To get an approximation of what our retirement benefit will be, you can use the Social Security calculator. You won’t get an exact figure, but you will be able to see roughly how big your benefit check will be in the future.