Hegna's Hotseat

Show Your Clients Their Retirement Income Shortfalls Using Social Security


ccording to the Social Security Administration (SSA), in 2019, over 31% of men and 34% of women took their benefits at age 62, permanently reducing their monthly benefits for the rest of their lives. There is a lot of information available to your clients about Social Security, but you can educate them in a way that's so simple even a small child can understand it. Every year, I team up with Social Security expert Marc Kiner to update my guide to Social Security and Medicare using the latest research from the SSA and other sources. Let me share with you a simple way to talk to your clients about Social Security this year, and they could ask you about other sources of guaranteed lifetime income!

Start by discovering your client's full retirement age (FRA). You can even share page 14 from my guide with them. Then, tell them my short story about the "Wise Men" at your local diner. After you've provided some simple education, ask them to pick the age they think they want to take their benefit(s).

Calculate their benefit, and then explain how this impacts the rest of their life in retirement. Do this by asking them what sort of annual income they'd like to receive in retirement. What do they want their retirement paycheck to be? Then, work with them to list their basic living expenses like food, rent, utilities, and any other expenses they expect to have. Compare that with their estimated Social Security benefit. If there is a shortfall, talk to them about other guaranteed lifetime income like a lifetime income annuity! You can even use the two slides below from my "Paychecks and Playchecks" presentation to go through this exercise with them. If there is no shortfall, it's time to talk to them about PLAYchecks.

That's it! This is a simple way to start a conversation with your clients. Now remember, each client will have a unique situation that should consider other aspects of Social Security, and many of your clients will ask you questions during this conversation. Keep your first meeting simple, and be prepared with all of the recent Social Security material by using my guide. You can even purchase several copies, give them out to clients who meet with you, ask them to read it, and then talk about it at your next appointment.

The newest version of my guide has new numbers for 2022 COLA, who receives benefits, average amount of monthly benefits by gender, the earnings test for 2022, the windfall elimination provision, average benefits for 2022, Medicare part B surcharges, and case studies.

If you're ready to stock up on copies for 2022, pre-order them in bulk at https://tomhegna.com/socialsecurity/cart. The preorder price is discounted so you can stock up now! This new version is currently running off the printers, so my team will ship your order as soon as we have the inventory at our warehouse. We want to get them to you before the New Year!

If you have 2021 copies or if you'd like to order some of last year's version at a steep discount, call my office at 1-855-TOM-HEGNA. You can click here for a fact sheet with the updated numbers. You can even print this out and insert it into any old copies (even 2020, 2019, or older) to share the most recent research and set yourself up as a knowledgeable professional.

I hope this helps you start 2022 off strong,

-Tom Hegna

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