Millions of seniors today collect Social Security, and despite rumors that the program may be on the verge of bankruptcy, you can generally count on those benefits to get you through retirement, too.

Now this doesn't mean that you should aim to retire only on Social Security. Doing so might leave you short on income. But you can, and should, bank on getting something from Social Security once your time in the workforce comes to an end.

Meanwhile, you're no doubt aware that when you collect a paycheck, a portion of your earnings are earmarked for Social Security. And so it stands to reason that you'd want to score the largest payday possible once you're ready to start collecting benefits.

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You'll often hear that the best way to get more Social Security is to delay your filing until the age of 70. Doing so will result in a minimum 24% boost to the benefit you would've otherwise collected at full retirement age.

But let's face it -- delaying Social Security until age 70 could easily mean having to work until age 70. And that may not be ideal. Even though Americans are generally living longer these days, you may want to end your career sooner so you can start to enjoy retirement while your health is relatively strong.

The good news is that there's another key step you can take to boost your Social Security benefits. And you don't have to push yourself to extend your career to make that happen.

It's a simple matter of tracking your earnings

The Social Security Administration (SSA) bases your monthly retirement benefit on a couple of factors: your lifetime earnings and the age at which you sign up. That's why it's so important to make sure the SSA has accurate records of your earnings.

Each year, the SSA issues all workers an earnings statement summarizing their wages. If you're 60 or older, that statement should come in the mail. Otherwise, you can create an account at and access it online.

It's important to spend a few minutes reviewing your earnings statement every year. If the SSA has you listed at a lower income than what you actually earned, it could result in a lower retirement benefit -- for life. But if you're able to correct errors on the part of the SSA, you might end up with a boosted benefit.

As one example, let's say you switched jobs one year, earning $20,000 at one for a couple of months and $85,000 at the next because you held it for most of the year. If the SSA is somehow missing your $85,000 of earnings for that year, it could result in a lower monthly benefit down the line. But if you spot and correct that mistake, you stand to score a higher payday.

Set yourself up for a financially secure retirement

Ideally, you'll enter retirement with a nice amount of money in savings. But you might still end up heavily reliant on Social Security to some degree.

That's why it pays to do what you can to boost your benefits. And checking your earnings record annually is a pretty painless way to make that happen.