What Age is a Senior Citizen?
What it means to retire is much different today than it was in decades past. Traditionally, once a person turns 65 they are defined as a “senior citizen”, but the meaning of what it means to be a senior citizen is much different today. There are a couple of ways to define entering the “senior” stage of life. It can be defined by milestones based on age and it can be defined by attitude.
For age-based milestones, one could say that they are a senior citizen as they cross any of these thresholds.
- 62 is the minimum age to start collecting Social Security
- 65 is the minimum age to qualify for Medicare
- 65 is the age when the standard deduction for federal taxes increases and also the age when a person can take the Elderly or Disabled Tax Credit
- 72 is the current age to start taking Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) from IRAs
- If the SECURE ACT which passed the House of Representatives is enacted into law. the RMD age would be raised to 75 and people would be able to make “catch-up” contributions to 401K plans of $10,000 at the ages of 62, 63, and 64
But a person’s attitude can also be the defining factor for their age. For example, Mick Jagger is 79 and continues to tour the world rocking out to audiences of all ages. William Shatner is 91 years old and he literally went to outer space last year on a Blue Origin spacecraft mission. These and many other people over the age of 65 don’t let a number define them because instead they are driven by purpose, attitude, healthy living, and a refusal to accept anyone else defining them as “senior citizens”.
It’s never too late to start planning for a well-balanced retirement. Listen to my podcast, Retirement Genius. Listeners will learn the practical strategies that have worked for others in a conversational style that destigmatizes aging and insists the best is yet to come!