LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — Starting in January, Social Security recipients will be getting a boost in their checks, but the increase is smaller than in past years.

Reporter Jill Schlesinger has tips for those who are deciding whether they can retire.

Social Security’s annual cost of living adjustment is based on inflation and with inflation now under 4%, next year’s increase is going to be 3.2% — an average of about $50 a month. That’s far less than the last two increases when inflation was much higher.

For those who are nearing retirement, one of the best defenses against an uncertain future, one that could see inflation rise or markets tumble at the wrong time, is to work longer — even if it is just a few years or part-time.

Not only does this allow your nest egg more time to grow, but it also means that you might be able to wait to claim your Social Security benefit.

The current maximum monthly payment at full retirement age is a little over $3,600, but at age 70 it would be more than $4,500.