Financial Literacy Month is perfect time to plan for future: Vonda VanTil Social Security Public Affairs Specialist
With April being Financial Literacy Month, there’s no time like the present to begin saving for your financial future. The earlier you start saving, the more you can accrue in a 401(k) individual retirement account and other types of IRAs. Social Security helps secure your future, but Social Security is only one part of a more complete retirement plan.
Financial literacy includes having access to not just the correct general information, but also to your personal financial information. You can open your own personal My Social Security account at Social Security.gov/myaccount/ and quickly have access to your information from anywhere. There, you can do many things, but the most important thing is to view your Social Security Statement.
Your Social Security Statement is an easy-to-read personal record of the earnings on which you have paid Social Security taxes and a summary of the estimated benefits you and your family could receive, including potential retirement, disability, and survivors’ benefits. Once you have an account, you can view your statement at any time. You’ll want to verify that your recorded earnings are correct, because your future benefits are based on your recorded earnings.
We also offer the online Retirement Estimator at Social Security.gov/benefits/retirement/estimator.html that provides immediate and personalized benefit estimates based on your earnings record. The Retirement Estimator is an interactive tool that allows you to compare different retirement scenarios like future earnings and different retirement ages.
One sure way to stay on top of your financial future is to join the more than 38 million people who have opened their own My Social Security account at Social Security.gov/myaccount/. The sooner you start planning for retirement, the better off you will be.
Vonda VanTil is the public affairs specialist for West Michigan. You may write her c/o Social Security Administration, 3045 Knapp NE, Grand Rapids MI 49525 or via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.