15 Things You Can Afford on the Average Social Security Check

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When you’re drafting your budget for retirement, it’s always useful to know what you can pay and how much you can stretch your Social Security check. The average Social Security benefit in 2021 is $1,543  per month but it very much depends on where you live and how savvy you are in terms of your finances.

Social Security is designed to cover about 40 percent of your earnings, so it’s not meant to become your only source of income during your golden years. Still, you might be more than surprised to find out what you can and can’t afford on the average Social Security check.


A place to live for under $1,000

According to a recent study, 20 cities were found suitable to rent an apartment for under $1,000. Here’s where the average Social Security check covers rent:

Akron, Ohio

Dayton, Ohio

Yuma, Ariz.

Jackson, Miss.

Kansas City, Kan.

Birmingham, Ala.

Evansville, Ind.

However, if Social Security is your only income source during retirement, you probably should not spend it entirely on rent. A better idea would be to downsize or choose an apartment that’s less redundant.

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