Few people who claim their Social Security early regret their choice, despite being aware of the financial benefits of waiting, according to a new report in the Journal of Aging Studies.
"This doesn't mean they thought it was the healthiest decision financially," said Lila Rabinovich, a co-author of the study and a researcher at the Center for Economic and Social Research at the University of Southern California. "It just means that it was the best decision at the time for them — that they couldn't have done things any differently."
The researchers held focus groups in Los Angeles, Virginia and Washington, D.C., in which they asked retired Americans who had already claimed their Social Security to reflect on the timing of their choice. Were they remorseful, or satisfied?
Most people were content with when they pulled the lever. The retirees often said the decision was highly personal, and unable to bend to any broad prescription.