A little queasy about starting everybody’s week on a downer but I would like to compare notes with fellow seniors about perceived life expectancy with T1/LADA. The context is: I just turned 62 and am trying to rationally decide whether to start taking social security early (at 62) or waiting. The monthly check is a bit of a rip off at age 62 but increases significantly until about age 70 for those who delay. The break even for delaying is somewhere around age 77 to 80+ depending on which chart is used and depending on how long one waits (assuming the WA DC crowd does not change the system). So those who take SS early and live into their 80’s or 90’s end up with less money coming in. There are other factors such as extra taxes taken out of SS checks based on W-2 earnings and things like that, but I am pretty comfortable I have that part of the equation figured out.
Prior to diabetes I had always assumed I will make it close to 100 based on many relatives who were healthy into their 90’s. Example: my father made it to 98 and my mother is still walking every day at 98. However I am reconsidering that from financial planning view…should I roll the dice and assume I will make it into advanced old age despite needing insulin to stay alive? Wondering how other seniors have looked at that question.
Are you still working and have an income that’s meeting your needs now? Do you have a spouse that will receive your benefits after you die? Are they in good health? There’s a ton that goes into the SS question… might be good to talk to a real CFP…
Sam, I’ve done all that and we keep getting stuck on the life expectancy (mine) question. It’s the #1 unknown left to assess and makes a huge difference in how smartly one handles the SS.
‘There are known knowns. There are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say, there are things that we now know we don’t know. But there are also unknown unknowns. There are things we do not know we don’t know.’
If you’re still in good health overall at 62 and have no immediate known complications I’d probably approach the equation as if you don’t have diabetes. There is just no way of knowing and anything else would just be wild guessing… but that’s just me
I’m a few years behind you, but doing the same analysis. One option I’m considering is using IRA/401K funds for fixed annuity, to help supplement SSA as regular monthly income. There is one called QLAC (funded from IRA) you can defer, and start monthly payments at date you choose. There is potential advantage to it, along with RMD distributions.
Many start SSA when start MC, with MC premiums deducted. If start SSA later, some think it’s a hassle to set up MC payments.
Ha…Thanks for the Rumsfeld quote (who was senior when he said it) but I’d like to point out that you’re not a senior more like a young whippersnapper! I think along similar lines as you but am hoping that some perspectives from fellow seniors will help me mentally validate whatever I decide to do. I have a quirk in my attitude…I hate leaving money on the table.
Trust me this quirk can develop long before your ripe old age
Be sure you understand how much the annuity is going to cost you. Annuities are notorious for being expensive with a lot of fees and commissions.
I think genetics counts for a lot.
My suggestion. If you end up stuck and unsure which way to go, let your family guide you.
Just having diabetes doesn’t mean I’ll die young. Since I don’t have any reason to think I’ll die young, I’ll wait til 70 to take social security, because the gains in monthly payout are huge, much more than any other safe investment.
Two more questions. How long have you had diabetes and age at diagnosis? And what will you do for health insurance if you retire before you’re eligible for Medicare?
I agree with one caveat…If one dies at 71 the gain was never realized. In fact, a little over 200k was never taken since age 62. That’s the factor I’m trying to think through.
I was diagnosed 4 1/2 yrs ago at age 57 1/2 and have no complications. The only predictable health glitch I can see down the road is if I am ever bedridden I don’t expect to be able to control my BG in a state like that.
I’ve got private health insurance I can keep until Medicare provided that I do enough consulting work for my old company to maintain eligibility. It’s good coverage on its face but the insurer is pretty archaic with some of their medical policies.
Yes, I’m aware that some are, and have done a lot of investigating and learning. And yes there are horror stories of people being taken advantage of.
So, I am not the right person to ask about financial planning at all. But the way I would think of this is not “what’s the average life expectancy of a person with T1D”? But rather: What’s the typical life course for diabetes? I don’t remember where I read about it, but I’ve heard that the typical disease course for T2 is about 20 to 30 years and I’ve also read that T2 has a more aggressive disease course than T1 – it’s just that people typically it later in life so that difference gets obscured. So I would estimate that, on average, I’d have 20 to 30 years from diagnosis.
But that could be the wrong thinking. What you want to see is something like a “survival plot” of T1 from time to diagnosis, or something like that.
Right, but unless you have special information, the best guess is that you’ll have a more-or-less normal lifespan. Something could go wrong, but that’s not the likely outcome unless you have special circumstances. They used to say that you should only expect 20 good years of life after diagnosis, but these days we’re doing much better than that.
Well that puts me at 77 which is not too bad. I googled around and found varying numbers but overall googling caused me to go ahead and place my marker on age 86…meaning delay SS. Talk to you all in 24 years and we’ll see how good of a guesser I am!
Puts me in the grave 25 years ago.
But I think I’m still alive and expect another 25+ good years.
@John58, it seems that, for people diagnosed 30-40 years ago, it was a reasonable expectation to have 15-20 years without problems, then to start seeing complications. Our endo is quoting a -8 year life expectation compared to glucose normals, with old data. For people diagnosed recently numbers are likely better.
You were diagnosed VERY late, so your sickness may be much slower to worsen than most others. And you are physically very fit. So these are major advantages compared to the average condition.
So, altogether, given all these facts, I would tend to believe that your likely decrease in life expectancy is no more than 3-4 years compared to glucose normals. if your family genes tend to see people live to 100, odds are you may not be much shorter than that as well.
One caveat about using old timers data: they already self selected as long lived, btw.
@John58 I don’t know if I’m qualified to speak about it because I’m still a kid ( only 67 years old, but feel 35).
I had been counting on working until 70, but a hemorrhagic stroke put a kebosh on that. So I took it at 66 because I thought that my days were numbered.
But a funny thing happened. I made a full recovery and I wanted to work. Social Security made it so I could work just 1 day a week.
And honestly, it doesn’t make much difference if I get $3600/mo or $3000/mo.
Well @Michel has me making it to 95 so we’ll see how it all works out!