In working out the evil plan I decided to work the numbers a little to see if there were any advantages of one year over another from 62 up to 70. The rates change, based on the payments at Full Retirement Age (FRA), which, naturally, has a convoluted calculation method.

The entire system is convoluted and something hinted to me that it was likely worth digging into a little to see what I might discover.

Using the data from the SSA for my account I worked out the annual amounts I would receive from application to age 80, then, subtracted the total for year 62 from each of the totals for the following years through applying at age 69.

YR.....Difference...............Total...............Payout Ranking

62.... -0-..........................$348,948....................9

63.....$3,360...................$352,308....................7

64.....$6,252...................$355,200....................5

65.....$11,232.................$360,180....................3

66.....$12,588.................$361,536....................2

67.....$4,392...................$353,340....................6

68.....$16,956.................$365,904....................1

69.....$10,906.................$359,854....................4

70....-$21,798.................$327,150....................8

Weird, huh? It goes up, it goes down, it even goes negative at the end. Essentially, indicating that applying for benefits in the year that provides the highest monthly payment (age 70) nets nearly 22K less overall than applying at 62 and taking the lower monthly amount to a designated final age (80 in this calculation).

The highest total payout over that span of years would be for those in my age group who apply at 68.

Second and Third were ages 66 and 65, respectively.

Based upon this I chose applying for SS at 65 because I'd get to use it more effectively by taking SS payments at a younger age and combine with other distributions to enjoy. There wasn't much difference between the totals for 65 and 66 (~$1356). So I vied for the earlier year.

Despite all the formulas that SSA has devised to ensure a recipient receives an equal payout over their retirement regardless of when you apply, clearly, this is not the end result.

Beyond that, their enticement to put off application to receive a larger monthly payment may be much worse if you wait the longest to apply, and the spread between the earliest and the mandatory age is far from being a linear progression.

This seemed pertinent enough to warrant sharing in this thread as it plays into planning of distributions.

Here a link to the calculator at SSA that I used to get the numbers applied to calculate payout each application year, based upon my FSA amount on record:

Early or Late Retirement Scroll down to find the calculator.