Saving money is important no matter your age or income level, but seniors often find themselves needing a few extra dollars here and there to make retirement work. Fortunately, there are practical ways to stretch a dollar, without breaking the bank.
Downsizing to a smaller home, getting rid of cable television, sharing expenses with friends and taking advantage of senior discounts are all effective ways to save money in retirement.
Larger homes cost more to heat, cool, furnish and repair, which is why downsizing the square footage makes a lot of sense for seniors. Moving to an assisted living community can amplify the cost savings, depending on the circumstances. Specifically, downsizing can reduce gas, electric, insurance, property taxes, and water bills, while minimizing upkeep costs like new carpet and landscaping.
Cut Back on Cable
Cable television isn’t cheap, especially when you factor in premium channels such as HBO, Showtime, and Cinemax. While it’s fun to have all of the sports and specialty channels, they aren’t always necessary, and they can cost more than $100 a month. Netflix and Hulu are much more cost-effective, allowing seniors to stream content via the Internet on their televisions. Both services combined allow retirees to watch movies and television shows at a fraction of the cost of cable.
Whether it’s carpooling to bingo, the movies or to the store to get groceries, ride sharing among seniors is an effective way to cut down on fuel costs. Transportation isn’t cheap, especially in areas of the country where cities are decentralized, or in the countryside where it takes some time to get back to more populated areas. Thus, lower fuel costs can help seniors. Ride sharing also cuts down on the wear and tear to older adults’ vehicles, extending a car or truck's useful life and reducing maintenance costs.
Moving into an assisted living facility like Vista Springs can also help seniors spread the cost of entertainment, activities, and medical care among fellow residents, enhancing the quality of life for everyone involved. The costs of independent medical attention, food preparation, and daily entertainment is often-times cost-prohibitive for seniors living alone. Finding ways to share expenses among a group provides new and exciting possibilities for aging adults.
Movie theaters, fast-food restaurants, fine-dining restaurants and similar establishments typically offer senior discounts at particular times, or on specific days of the week. Taking advantage of these opportunities can yield cost-savings and an active retirement, which is beneficial on multiple levels. The goal of retirement is not to stop spending money, but to enjoy the fruits of one’s labor of many years of working. Senior discounts allow seniors to get out and do more for less, which is positive for everyone in the community.
Seniors living off of a fixed income usually need to be cost-conscious to ensure a comfortable and rewarding retirement. But when you find ways to save money in an efficient, practical and common sense way, older adults can live a fun and enjoyable retirement.