Online Services, Retirement

Make Your Future a Good One with the Retirement Estimator

December 7, 2015 • By

Last Updated: December 7, 2015

photograph of a couple looking at the blueprint of a house, planning for their future.If the alternate 2015 of the Back to the Future film series were accurate, we’d be easing along on hover boards, navigating skyways in flying cars, and enjoying the luxuries of self-lacing sneakers and self-fitting jackets.

In 1985, after making it back to the future from 1955, Marty joined Doc for a drive 30 years into the future. That future is now.

In that imagined 2015, we conduct business by fax and watch multiple channels of entertainment on the wall.

In some ways, the real 2015 is far more advanced than the imagined one of the movies. You don’t see any computers or online services in the movie — let alone the computers most of us carry around with us in the form of smartphones and tablets.

In the real 2015, you can do a far better job of predicting your own future. Just visit the Retirement Estimator. With the Retirement Estimator, you can plug in some basic information to get an instant, personalized estimate of your future benefits. Different choices in life can alter the course of your future, so try out different scenarios such as higher and lower future earnings amounts and various retirement dates to get a good prediction of how it can change your future benefit amounts.

As Doc said in the final moments of the film series, no one’s future has been written yet. “Your future is what you make it. So make it a good one.”

With the information you get from the Retirement Estimator, you’ll have a better idea of what types of savings and pensions you may need, and at what age you should consider retiring — to make your future the best it can be.

You don’t need a converted DeLorean or flux capacitor or even a team of creative filmmakers to predict your future. Just visit the Retirement Estimator and predict your own!

And, when you’re ready to put that future in motion, apply for benefits online.

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About the Author

Jim Borland, Assistant Deputy Commissioner, Communications


  1. Mildred M Banks

    Why when one call SS they never never call you back?
    My God help us all.

    • Ray Fernandez, Public Affairs Specialist

      Hi Mildred, we are sorry to hear that you are having difficulty reaching someone by phone. We are experiencing higher than normal call volume. When calling our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213, is generally best if you call later in the week. Our representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. We also respond to questions and provide general information through our Blog and Facebook page. If you have a general question, we encourage you to ask here. But remember, never post personal information on social media. Thanks!

  2. Lic. Pierre Millet

    Happy Holidays everybody, and special to the our Acting Commissioner of Social Security, its specialist, and workers in general.
    God bless America!
    God bless Social Security!



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  4. PatriciaFrancois

    I am about to turn 64. Can I retire at 65 or do I have to wait?

    • Ray Fernandez, Public Affairs Specialist

      The earliest age to apply and receive Social Security Retirement Benefits is 62, but if you decide to get benefits before your full retirement age, your benefits will be reduced. At age 64 and if you are ready, you can complete your application for retirement benefits online. Also, you can create a My Social Security account to review your earnings record and get an estimate of your future benefits. If you have specific questions, you can call our toll-free number, 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) for assistance. Representatives are available between 7a.m. and 7p.m., Monday through Friday. You will generally have a shorter wait time if you call later in the week.

  5. Mboyle

    Why. Does the estimator not show 8% increase between the age of 66-67 ?

    • Ray Fernandez, Public Affairs Specialist

      Annual delayed retirement credit percentage varies from 3% to 8% by year of birth, If you cannot use the Retirement Estimator, please use one of our other benefit Calculators. Which calculator you choose depends on what you want do. In your case you may need to use our Early or Late Retirement Calculator. Thanks!

  6. pedro baggio

    thank you for your letter

  7. Kim Boyd

    Does ssi help with burial when married and how much with my husband get

  8. Donna soares

    I don’t understand why you raise the age to 67 are you guys crazy? Then you give it to drug babies there parents are druggies then you give it to illegals bullshit give us our money you theives

    • Former Employee

      Ms. Soares is just spouting ignorant babble. She knows virtually nothing about Social Security and should not be giving anyone advice. CONGRESS made the law raising the FULL retirement age, depending on your birth year, but you can still apply and receive reduced retirement benefits as early as 62. A surviving spouse can apply as early as age 60, 50 if he or she is disabled, and at any age if she has a child of the deceased worker in her care who is under 16 or who became disabled before age 22. Don’t allow someone to deprive you of benefits by listening to their misinformation! That is the same type of person who hears something from a friend or relative and comes in to argue with a Social Security representative who has training and years of experience. It is very aggravating to those of us who have the knowledge to have people misled by an uninformed person who just wants to gripe about something they don’t understand.

  9. Margarette

    I was married to my ex husband for 25 yrs. I was told that I can collect through my ex husband social security instead if mine. Since I am collecting that they made me collect on myself .why I found out is the statement they send was an amount then plus 30. From my ex. I am totally confused . Can somebody help me out on this pls. So confused. And thank you for everyone’s help.

    • Donna soares

      Cause your not 67 or older

  10. Benny Beebe

    A friend of ours , whose husband died three weeks ago, asked a questions about what to expect from social security benefits.
    Can anyone give me an answer?
    Thanks for your help.
    Benny B.

    • bruce

      social securty pays 255.00 in death benefits.

    • Donna soares

      No money for her till she is like 67

    • Ray Fernandez, Public Affairs Specialist

      We are sorry to hear about your friend’s loss. If the husband worked long enough to be insured under Social Security, your friend may be eligible for Survivor Benefits. She may also submit an application for a Lump-Sum Death Payment. At this time, we do not offer an online application for survivors benefits. Your friend should call 1-800-772-1213 to report the death and to apply for benefits. Representatives are available between 7 AM and 7 PM Monday through Friday. You can also contact your local Social Security office. An appointment is not required, but if you call ahead and schedule one, it may reduce the time you spend waiting to speak to someone. For more information on this, please read How Social Security Can Help You When a Family Member Dies.

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