How Much Social Security Will I Get at Age 63?

You can begin receiving Social Security retirement benefits at age 63, but it may come at a cost.
Roberta Pescow
By Roberta Pescow 
Published
Edited by Tina Orem

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This influences which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money.


The investing information provided on this page is for educational purposes only. NerdWallet, Inc. does not offer advisory or brokerage services, nor does it recommend or advise investors to buy or sell particular stocks, securities or other investments.

At age 63, workers born in or after 1960 receive 75% of the Social Security retirement benefit they are entitled to at age 67 (full retirement age). Social Security benefits vary with earnings and when a worker retires; in 2023 the maximum is $3,627 at full retirement age

Social Security Administration. Frequently Asked Questions. Accessed Apr 17, 2023.
.

Estimate your Social Security retirement benefits

Your actual benefit may be lower or higher than estimate made with this calculator, because it does not take into account your actual earnings history.

We assume you have earnings every year until you begin receiving Social Security benefits. If you had several years of noncovered employment or your earnings changed significantly from year to year, this calculator will overestimate or underestimate your benefit.

Desired age to begin Social Security

You will qualify for benefits at age 62.

What’s my full retirement age and how does it affect my benefit at age 63?

Full retirement age is the age at which you’re entitled to 100% of your Social Security retirement benefit. For a long time, 65 was considered the “normal retirement age,” and many people still may assume they’ll receive full Social Security benefits at 65. However, for people born in or after 1960, full retirement age is 67.

Full retirement age for Social Security

Year you were born

Full retirement age

If you start receiving benefits at 62, your retirement benefit is reduced by...

1943 through 1954

66.

25%.

1955

66 and 2 months.

25.83%.

1956

66 and 4 months.

26.67%.

1957

66 and 6 months.

27.5%.

1958

66 and 8 months.

28.33%.

1959

66 and 10 months.

29.17%.

1960 and later

67.

30%.

Source: Social Security Administration

If you start claiming Social Security before you reach full retirement age, the Social Security Administration reduces your benefits. For example, people who claim benefits at age 62 (the first year you can claim Social Security retirement benefits) receive checks that are as much as 30% less than what they would receive if they wait until full retirement age.

It’s important to understand that no matter what year you were born, you will not reach full retirement age by 63. This means that if you begin claiming Social Security at age 63, your benefit will also be significantly lower than it would be if you wait. The actual dollar amount you’ll receive at any eligible age is based on your unique earning history.

AD
Zoe Financial
Managing your wealth is hard. Zoe Financial makes it easy.
Find and hire fiduciaries, financial advisors, and financial planners that will work with you to achieve your wealth goals.
Find A Financial Advisor

via Zoe Financial

Paid non-client promotion

How exactly does early retirement reduce my Social Security benefit?

The Social Security Administration has a very specific formula for how much your retirement benefits will decrease if you claim retirement benefits before your full retirement age:

  • For every month before full retirement age that you start claiming benefits (up to 36 months), your benefit amount drops by 5/9 of 1%.

  • Additionally, for each month before retirement age that you start claiming benefits that exceeds 36 months, your benefit drops by 5/12 of 1%

    Social Security Administration. Early or Late Retirement?. Accessed Apr 17, 2023.
    .

For example: if your full retirement age is 67 and you begin claiming benefits at age 63 (48 months early), the Social Security Administration reduces your benefit by 36 times 5/9 of 1%, plus 12 times 5/12 of 1% for a total of a 25% benefit reduction.

🤓Nerdy Tip

Did you know that Medicare Part B premiums are usually automatically deducted from your Social Security retirement checks? Learn more about how much Medicare actually costs.

» Want to bump up your Social Security benefit? Here are 8 things to try

How is my Social Security benefit determined?

A number of factors determine exactly how much Social Security you’ll receive:

  • Your income. The more you earn during your working years, the higher your benefits are. The Social Security Administration adjusts (or “indexes”) each year’s earnings for inflation and then calculates your average indexed monthly earnings for your 35 highest-earning years. It then applies a formula to this figure to determine your “primary insurance amount,” which is the amount you’ll receive if you claim benefits at full retirement age.

  • Your age at retirement. If you retire before you’ve reached full retirement age, you’ll receive a reduced benefit, and if you delay retirement beyond full retirement age, your benefit increases incrementally until age 70.

  • Cost-of-living adjustment. You become eligible for Social Security’s cost-of-living adjustments at age 62, and from then on, all cost-of-living increases apply to your benefit amount — even if you don’t actually begin receiving Social Security until 70.

  • If you’re eligible for a government pension. If you didn’t pay Social Security tax on your government earnings, a different formula that reduces your benefits may apply.

Does it pay to delay retirement?

If you wait until after full retirement age to claim Social Security, your benefit amount increases by a predetermined percentage every month, and it keeps increasing monthly until age 70.

  • For those born in 1943 or later, this increase is ⅔ of 1% per month (8.0% annually). 

  • After age 70 there are no further increases to your benefit amount, no matter how long you wait

    Social Security Administration. Delayed Retirement Credits. Accessed Apr 17, 2023.
    .

  • If you do decide to delay retirement beyond 65, remember to still sign up for Medicare at 65.

How to apply for Social Security

You can apply for Social Security online, in person at your local Social Security office (you have to make an appointment) or by calling 800-772-1213 (TTY 800-325-0778). If you live outside the U.S. or one of its territories, contact your closest U.S. Social Security office, U.S. Embassy or consulate.

Get more smart money moves – straight to your inbox
Sign up and we’ll send you Nerdy articles about the money topics that matter most to you along with other ways to help you get more from your money.