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Reaching the break-even point

Last reviewed: December 2009

Below is the projected lifetime Social Security payout for a 45-year-old based on whether he or she decides to begin collecting benefits at age 62, 67, or 70. The point at which total benefits would be roughly the same is around age 80. Those who live longer will get the largest payout if they waited until age 70 to collect benefits.

Social Security payout chart

This article appeared in Consumer Reports Money Adviser.

Posted: November 2009—Consumer Reports Money Adviser issue: December 2009