Retirement The American Dream, or Nightmare? Written by: Scott Page
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You’ve worked hard, saved money, invested wisely – and now, you want to enjoy retirement. It’s the final chapters of the American Dream many people strive for during their younger years. … It’s also a fairytale, unless you manage the retirement fund correctly.

According to the AARP, the maximum monthly Social Security benefit that an individual who files a claim for Social Security retirement benefits in 2019 can receive per month is:

  • $3,770 for someone who files at age 70.
  • $2,861 for someone who files at full retirement age (currently age 66).
  • $2,209 for someone who files at age 62.

And you thought all that FICA cash was going to be a windfall during the golden years!

It’s tough being a senior. The costs of healthcare, housing, utilities and even food has skyrocketed. Unfortunately, the Cost of Living Adjustment just isn’t making ends meet for some seniors. There are, however, a few ways to save even more money during retirement:

Save on your property taxes

Each state has a property-tax benefit for seniors. Several states even “freeze” property taxes for seniors, while others limit how much a property’s tax value can increase. Also, the homestead exemption can be larger when a homeowner reaches a certain age. (The larger the exemption, the lower the tax.) It’s worth your time to check in

Born before 1965? Save on your mortgage!

The Freddie Mac Enhanced Relief Refinance Program (FMERR) could reduce mortgage payments by as much as $3,000 per year. (FMERR is a free program and there is no cost to see if you qualify.)

Get a new life insurance policy

A significant number of Americans do not have a life insurance policy and their family is at financial risk if the worst should happen. The reality is, life insurance rates are at a 20-year low and you could qualify for a great new policy at an extremely affordable price.

Take advantage of retailers’ offers

Everyday living can add up, cost-wise. Be sure to capitalize on discounts and freebies: seniors receive a 10% discount at Ace Hardware (varies by location, so call ahead); active military and veterans get a 10% discount on all in-store purchases at Lowe’s; large phone companies offer special discounts to seniors. … And when you use those cumulative savings to travel, do not forget to check with airlines on their discounts for seniors!

Check your annual Social Security statement

Remember, these benefits are based on the average of your 35 highest-earning years. A miscalculation could impact your benefit for the rest of your life. Do not assume it is accurate. Check the numbers and report any errors to the Social Security Administration.

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