News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Seniors

March 23, 2009

Social Security: Know the basics about Social Security and saving for retirement

TERRE HAUTE — Retirement is probably the last thing on your mind if you’re a young worker. But there are some basics you should know about Social Security and savings to plan for your retirement.

Social Security is the foundation for a secure retirement, but was never intended to be your only source of income when you retire. While Social Security replaces about 40 percent of the average worker’s pre-retirement earnings, most financial advisors say that you will need 70 percent or more of pre-retirement earnings to live comfortably. Even with a pension, you will still need to save. If you will not have a private pension, you will need to save more — and start saving sooner. Today’s young workers can expect to spend 20, 30 or even more years in retirement, so saving is critical.

The sooner you start to save, the more time your savings will have to grow. Whether you’re able to save $5 or $500, it’s in your interest to start saving now.

Want to start planning your future now? There are some easy ways to do so. Take a look at Your Social Security Statement, which you’ll receive in the mail about two to three months before your birthday. Along with your annual Statement, workers between the ages of 25 and 35 will receive a helpful insert that provides information about Social Security, savings, and more items of interest to young workers. Want something more interactive? Visit Social Security’s online Retirement Estimator at www.socialsecurity.gov/estimator which allows you to try out different retirement scenarios based on your personal earnings record.

You can also go to www.mymoney.gov for information on getting credit, paying for education, buying a home, creating a budget, starting a business as well as financial calculators and planning tools.

Don’t forget that Social Security coverage is not just for retirement, but also for disability and survivor benefits in the event that you are unable to work, or you leave behind a family that depends on your income when you die. Read more about retirement, disability and survivors benefits at www.socialsecurity.gov.

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