Should my husband draw Social Security now at age 66 1/2?

My husband and I got married a year ago. I am 58 years old and he is 66. When we married, we both agreed to work until I retired, which is good because neither one of us is wealthy. In the meantime, his parents in Texas recently passed away. We inherited some money and a few low valued rental properties there. He is in Texas, where he hasn't worked for two years now, still trying to get rid of those properties and I am back in Illinois (where we will live) working full-time. The Texas properties are really bad and he is putting in a lot of labor to fix them up. I think he should take Social Security now instead of digging into the money we inherited to live off of each month. My salary pays for my commute, living expenses, insurance, and a small bit for savings if we're lucky. I'm also covering a long-term care insurance policy for us and dental for both of us as well as my health insurance. When he gets back to Illinois, we wanted to buy a house, but instead of even getting a part-time job to supplement our income (which would not decrease his Social Security at this point) as he promised, he is living off of the inherited money and refusing to draw Social Security until age 70. Soon, we won't have enough money to get a house or for any retirement security. At this point in our lives, I don't see how waiting 4 years to get an increase of $200 a month makes any sense. We are losing $15,000 a year to maybe make $2,400 more a year four years from now. I think he should get a part-time job AND take the Social Security. Who knows if either one of us will make it to 70 or be unable to work soon, and we'll both have to live to over 80 to break even with what he's NOT taking. Letting the Social Security sit there with our fingers crossed for a very small increase while we could have income, and maybe even some savings on top of that, and instead spending saved money for our house, seems insane. We are just getting further and further behind. I would like your opinion because this is really starting to get contentious between us. I realize in a normal situation that if you don't need the money, you shouldn't take it until 70 years old, but we DO need the money. I can't possibly cover for the both of us. Besides that, if something happens to his or my health, and neither one can work, we're really in a worse mess. What should I do?

Financial Planning, Social Security, Peri-Retirement
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2 weeks ago
67% of people found this answer helpful

I understand your angst and that is sometimes the problem when people read the generic news and feel bad if they can't follow it.   I am not in favor of depleting the assets now with the expectation of slightly better cash flow in the future.  It would be an easier answer if we had all of the numbers but obviously you feel that your assets are not large enough to provide a comfortable retirement and you do not wish to deplete them now, thinking that it would take over a decade to recoup.  Delaying social security works the best for those who are in great health and have a large nest egg.

Having said that, you may wish to sit down with someone who can look at your assets and benefits and confirm the decision or show you how you could comfortably wait,  If you are adventurous you could also look at some of the tools to help you understand the implications.  Here is one http://crr.bc.edu/special-projects/interactive-tools/target-your-retirement/

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