A Fruitful Retirement: Social Security Benefit Taking your Social Security benefits at the right time may help maximize your benefit. Share | Related Content 18 Years’ Worth of Days The average retirement lasts for 18 years, with many lasting even longer. Will you fill your post-retirement days with purpose? When Should You Take Social Security Monthly Social Security payments differ substantially depending on when you start receiving benefits. An Inside Look at Retirement Living A number of questions and concerns need to be addressed to help you better prepare for retirement living.