Social Security has a Calculator on Life Expectancy. Why?

Social Security has a calculator on their website that allows you to enter your year of birth and get results on your average length of life. Note that the system does not take into account medical conditions and lifestyle choices that may affect how long you will live. The data for the calculator is compiled by the Social Security Administration.

Link to the Life Expectancy Calculator to get a rough estimate of how long you (or your spouse) may live

Why is this calculator important?
The Social Security website offers the calculator as a tool to help those eligible for Social Security Benefits to determine when they want to retire and collect retirement benefits. However this calculator is not just about ssa retirement benefits but needs to be looked at as an overall tool in planning and managing all of your assets as you age including Social Security Benefits, additional pensions and investments.

According to data compiled by the Social Security Administration:

  •  A man reaching age 65 today can expect to live, on average, until age 83.
  • A woman turning age 65 today can expect to live, on average, until age 85.
  •  About one out of every four 65-year-olds today will live past age 90.
  • About one out of every ten 65-year-olds will live past age 95.

Where this research is going …

After using the calculator, reading the articles and reviewing your assets you need to evaluate your financial situation. Basically do you have enough money to retire or not? Do you have enough assets to cover a long term stay in a nursing home? If you don’t know or if you are not sure then start planning now. Some options are:

  1. Look for educational classes in your community on planning for retirement. Be sure to attend classes from different groups so you can learn more about what is available. Classes can be found at local junior colleges, senior centers, local senior housing locations and local professionals serving seniors may offer educational seminars.
  2. Look for a financial advisor that could provide guidance and once again interview different companies and individuals so you can learn more about different approaches to retirement planning.
  3. Learn about Long Term Care insurance
  4. If your income and assets are low, start investigating resources for low to moderate income older adults and seniors and start planning now.
  5. And always, always check references and credentials of anyone you are considering working with on financial matters.

A good resource to learn more about consumer protection is the U.S. Federal Trade Commission Consumer Information site