Senior Financial Services

The federal government has many retirement planning programs in place for seniors. These programs offer financial assistance and services to those who are retired or are planning for retirement.

Some of these programs are meant to offer temporary aid and support until recipients garner better circumstances for themselves. Other assistance programs offer permanent help to those who could not thrive without it or whose circumstances have changed significantly that they cannot support themselves.

Social Security, for instance, is a federally-sponsored organization that provides living expenses for retired individuals who are of Social Security retirement age and meet work history requirements. While it is assistance offered later in life, resources are distributed for life once they are initiated. On the other hand, programs like the Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP) that provide fresh food and nutritional knowledge of recipes and more for seniors and families may or not be temporary programs with a purpose of teaching recipients to make healthier nutrition choices. Applicants can find an array of financial services specifically available to seniors in the sections below.

Social Security Retirement Benefits for Seniors

Social Security retirement benefits can be disbursed as early as 62 years of age for early retirees or as late as 70 years for delayed retirees. Full retirement falls in between 65 and 67 years of age, depending on the individual’s birth year. Social Security retirement benefits last for life and provide comfort and peace of mind for retired seniors in addition to covering some or all of the recipient’s living expenses.

Eligibility for Social Security Retirement Benefits

Eligibility for Social security retirement benefits is based on various factors that retirees must meet to receive these benefits. Retired workers who meet these requirements and worked and paid into the Social Security tax fund will receive benefits, as will people with disabilities and surviving spouses and children of benefit recipients who have passed away.

Related Article: Medicare Costs and Coverage

How to Apply for Social Security Retirement Benefits

The Social Security online application is the easiest way to apply for retirement benefits. By providing the necessary documents and answering the questions accurately and specifically, seniors can successfully complete the application process on a computer with internet access.

How to Determine Your Retirement Benefits Amount

Learning how to calculate Social Security benefits is crucial for retirement planning that should take place before retirement. An estimating calculator provides a snapshot of what post-retirement budgeting will look like. By understanding how to determine retirement benefits, seniors can plan accordingly and enjoy a successful and comfortable retirement.

Social Security Benefits for Surviving Spouses

Social Security spousal benefits offer peace of mind for recipients in knowing their loved ones will be financially sound after they are gone. Widows and widowers can receive the Social Security benefits of their deceased spouses for the remainder of their lifetime.

Retirement Planning

It is never too late to start retirement planning, and it is one of the most important things seniors will do. It sets the tone for the last 20 years of life. Securing resources for financial security through the years after retirement is vital to enjoying a comfortable and fulfilling retirement.

401(k) Retirement Plans

A 401(k) plan is one of the most common types of retirement plans in the U.S. This is a qualified plan that allows employees to opt for their employer to contribute a small amount of their wages into their account. It serves as an easy and clean option for a retirement saving plan. A few types of 401(k) retirement plans include:

  • Traditional.
  • Safe harbor.
  • SIMPLE.

IRAs

A traditional IRA is a retirement saving option with significant tax advantages. Because employee contributions to an IRA retirement fund are often fully or partially deductible on yearly income tax returns, it is a common option for retirement planners.

Pensions

Pension plan payments, interest, annuities and dividends are not taxable by the Social Security Administration. Thus, oftentimes a pension is more valuable to a retiree than other retirement plan options.

Financial Resources for Seniors

There are many jobs for retirees that seniors can do to supplement their retirement fund and keep busy at the same time. When seniors need assistance with finances or guidance after retirement, there are several very useful opportunities available to them. Some of these financial resources for seniors are listed below.

The Best Jobs for Seniors and Retirees

What do a tour guide, a soccer coach and a convention center staff member have in common? They are all excellent jobs for retirees because they encompass active and social habits, two traits seniors should look for in job. Jobs after retirement can provide many benefits, one of which is a supplemental income, when applicable.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) for Seniors

The SSI benefits program provides resources to adults age 65 years of age and older who have disabilities and otherwise limited income.

Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP)

This Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program provides for low-income seniors. By connecting recipients with local farmers’ markets, seniors receive fresh and healthy nutrition options right from the source. The SFMNP is a successful component of State agencies like the Agency on Aging or State Department of Agriculture.

Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP)

The Commodity Supplemental Food Program strives to improve the nutrition of elderly individuals 60 years of age or more who suffer from low-income. By incorporating nutritious USDA Foods through the CSFP, the overall health and well-being of these seniors is improved.

Home Equity Conversion Mortgages

Many seniors take advantage of a Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) to supplement their income during retirement. This is the only type of reverse mortgage that is insured by the U.S. Federal Government. It is available through FHA-approved lenders only.

Related Article: Low-Income Senior Housing

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