If you file for Social Security in 2021, the maximum monthly benefit you can receive is $3,895. In this post, I’m going to go over three things that you can do to get the maximum Social Security amount. 

The first step to earning the maximum social security benefit is to work at least 35 years.

The size of your Social Security check is based on your average wage in your 35 highest earning years. If you’ve worked less than that, then you’ll have some $0-earning years that really drag down the average. You won’t get the maximum in this scenario. 

The second thing you can do is earn the maximum taxable earnings each year.

The maximum wage base limit is around $142,000 this year, in 2021. The amount changes almost every year, but that’s what it is currently. If your Social Security benefit is based on your average wage over 35 years, and if your wages meet or exceed that taxable maximum over that 35 year period, then you should be eligible for the maximum social security benefit. 

The final thing to do to get that maximum amount is claim your benefits at age 70.

If you’re able to accomplish the first two requirements, then waiting until 70 is the final thing that you need to do to get the maximum. You’re typically able to start your benefits at age 62, if that’s what you want to do. But that would mean that you’d be reducing your monthly benefit by quite a lot. For example, the maximum benefit for someone in 2021 at age 62 is about $2,300 per month. That’s about $1,600 less than the maximum at age 70. There are also a few other negatives to starting early. Click here to watch a video that explains these negative aspects.  

If you want to go over your specific Social Security-maximization strategy, or if you have questions about maximizing your retirement income, then visit streamlineplanning.com and schedule a time to talk with me. I can help you walk through some of those different strategies. 

I’ve also included some free resources to help you plan for retirement in the links here: