Ways retired couples can curb their spending

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Welcome to Retirement Scan, our daily roundup of retirement news your clients may be talking about.

Ways retired couples can curb their spending
Setting aside a portion of their retirement earnings is one way for retired couples to preserve their savings, according to an expert in this MarketWatch article. Retirees are advised to shop more wisely to lower their food costs and reduce their entertainment and dining-out expenses. Taking advantage of discounts and sales can also help retirees curb their expenses and prevent overspending.

When to file a restricted application for Social Security spousal benefits?
A retired couple who turned 66 last year can file a restricted application for Social Security spousal benefit on the same day that the spouse files for his or her own retirement benefit, according to this article in Forbes. "However, whichever one of you files the restricted application for spousal benefits cannot claim those benefits in any month prior to the later of a) the month they reach full retirement age (FRA) or b) the month the other spouse chooses to start their retirement benefits," an expert writes.

Avoid these 3 hiccups with your clients’ HSAs
Pre-retirees who intend to continue saving in an HSA are advised to read up on a few rules, according to this CNBC article. For example, older workers who opt to collect retroactive benefits from Social Security while contributing to an HSA will face a 6% excise tax plus income taxes on these excess contributions, according to the article. “Take the excess contributions out before you file your tax return. That includes the contributions and the earnings associated with them.”

Here’s why so many clients claim Social Security at 62
Although delaying Social Security past the full retirement age would mean bigger benefit payouts, many seniors opt to file as soon as they qualify for the benefits at age 62, according to this article in Motley Fool. Some of these seniors opt to start collecting Social Security benefits as early as they can because they believe they don't have a long life span, or they are afraid of uncertainty in the future. Others are also compelled to file early because of unforeseen life events, such as job loss and serious illness.

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Finding the best rates for fixed annuities
A fixed annuity comes in a variety of types, and clients who consider owning one should understand the unique benefits and limitations of these options before making a purchase, according to this article in TheStreet. "You should always base your buying decision solely on the contractual guarantees of the policy," according to the article. "Never buy an annuity on a hypothetical, theoretical, back-tested, hopeful agent return scenario."

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