Now that you’ve made it to retirement, being frugal and saving every penny might be important to help your retirement account last as long as possible. You’ve spent years saving and making plans for all the things you would do when you finally retired but, until you adjust to your new circumstances, it can be stressful wondering if you’ll have enough to get you through.
My parent’s who have both since passed away were terrible at saving for their retirement. They were born during the Great Depression Era and as such didn’t have the same outlook on retirement as people are age and younger. For us, it’s been drilled into our heads to prepare for retirement.
Hopefully, if you’re at retirement age, you’ve heeded the warning and have enough money tucked aside to cover your expenses for the remainder of your life. In general, people are living longer than ever before so you may experience some fear around your financial circumstances.
With these money saving tips to the rescue, you can let go of that fear and know you’ll be okay.
Let’s take a look at some great money saving tips for retirees that will help ease your worries about having enough to live on.
15 Of The Best Money Saving Tips for Retirees
DECREASED LIVING EXPENSES
Some of your living expenses will naturally decrease without you having to make any adjustments.
You will no longer need to have a work wardrobe so you won’t have the expense of suits, uniforms, and dress shoes.
Since you’re no longer commuting every day, you won’t have the added expense of parking or public transportation. You’ll also be driving less so your gas and toll expenses will be reduced. Depending on where you live and how far you travel to and from work, this can save you anywhere from $5,000 – $10,000 a year.
Chances are if you’re retired, your kids are grown and living on their own so you’re no longer paying their tuition, health insurance, car insurance and other expenses like food and groceries. And with fewer people living in your home, your utility bills will go down too.
If you’ve been in the same home for the last 20-30 years, you’ve probably paid off your mortgage as well.
These reductions in your usual living expenses mean more savings for you.
FRUGAL LIVING TIPS FOR SENIORS
Even though your living expenses have been reduced, there are still plenty of money saving tips for seniors to help you reduce expenses even further.
Before renewing memberships, stop and think about if you still need them. Do you still need that gym membership or can you work out at home? Signing up for a class at the community center or local YMCA is less expensive than the gym membership. What other memberships can you cancel?
Review your cellphone plan. If you’re not commuting as often and you’re spending more time with your spouse, do you need all the data and minutes you’re currently paying for or can you reduce your plan. It may even be beneficial to convert to a less expensive pre-paid plan with month-to-month service. You can find a great smartphone for less than $100 and keep your bill under $50 a month per line.
Don’t be ashamed to ask for the “senior discount”. Many businesses offer a hefty discount for seniors and every little bit helps. Amtrak offers a 15% discount on train travel. AT&T and Verizon offer $30 monthly plans for seniors over 65. And Chick-Fil-A offers seniors a free beverage with their meal. Many museums and national parks offer discounts as well.
Reevaluate your insurance needs. Can you auto insurance be reduced since you’re no longer commuting? Don’t forget to ask for the senior discount with your insurance company, it can save you hundreds every year. Look into your insurance company’s roadside assistance program; it’s probably less expensive than membership to an auto club.
Now that you’re retired and spending more time with your spouse, you may want to consider getting rid of a car. You may no longer need two cars and selling one will not only put some money in the bank, it will also reduce your insurance and maintenance costs.
Now that you’re empty-nesters, you may want to consider downsizing to a smaller home or even a condo where there’s a maintenance crew to handle any issues for you. You can add the money you make from the sale of your home to your savings to build your financial cushion.
If you’re planning on traveling, keep in mind that you no longer have a work schedule that you have to plan around. Traveling mid-week often times means less expensive airfare. You can also travel during the off-seasons to avoid the crowds and get a better rate. All those hotels at the beach will be reducing their rates in September and October when everyone’s back at work and school. If you’re planning on traveling a lot, buy a used trailer or mobile home and take your home with you on the road. Even brand new, you can find a very comfortable mobile home for under $50,000. This can save you tons on travel expenses over the years.
Review your cable bill. How much TV are you watching these days? Do you need 10 different movie channels? Can you let go of the DVR? It may even make more sense to cancel your cable bill altogether that averages $100 a month and switch to a Netflix account for $8 a month.
Keep doing the things you love to do, just a little less frequently. If you’ve been going out to dinner three nights a week, take a cooking class to learn how to make your favorite dishes and eat out only once a week.
Consider taking a reverse mortgage on your home. This allows you to access your home’s equity while still living there. The mortgage is repaid when the home is sold. In the meantime, you can take a monthly payout which offers you several hundred dollars per month, or you can take the money in one lump sum. The choice is yours.
One last thing to consider about your retirement finances, you can consider taking a part-time job or starting a side business. This will allow you to increase your monthly income while only working when you want to.
These money saving tips for retirees will keep thousands of dollars every year in your bank account while you’re still enjoying a wonderful retirement lifestyle. Just because you’re retired, doesn’t mean you have to live on beans and rice and stay home every night.
You’ve worked hard to get here, enjoy every moment of it. Travel the world, be adventurous, take chances, and try something new. Just remember to keep your finances in check and save money where you can so your nest egg lasts.
MY FAVORITE MONEY-SAVING TOOLS
EBATES: Want to earn cash back when you shop online? Ebates acts as a shopping portal offering coupons and cashback from over 2,000 online stores. I always check on Ebates first whenever I shop online! You can join Ebates for free and get a $10 welcome bonus when you sign up through this link.
DIGIT: Like the idea of saving but need something automatic? Digit is the perfect solution if trying to automate your savings strategy. In essence, what Digit does is use an algorithm to detect spare money and then transfers it to a secure savings account – so you’ll always have something to fall back on. Sign up for free!
GROCERY BUDGET MAKEOVER: Is your grocery budget giving you a serious kick in your families spending plan? Grocery Budget Makeover helped my family slash $6,000 a year from our food bill! Learn more about how Grocery Budget Makeover can help you save money too!