You’ve worked your whole life to get to the time when you no longer have to work. While being retired has its perks, it also brings with it some stress and anxiety. Living on a fixed-income can be daunting, especially without a budget. Even with a budget, you may find it hard to pay for your needs while also living your life to the fullest. The good news is that there are plenty of ways to cut costs and keep more money in your pocket.
Compared to decades ago, mortgage rates have dropped significantly. If you still own your home, now may be a good time to consider refinancing. With a lower interest rate, your overall monthly mortgage payment will decrease. Of course, before refinancing, be sure to talk to your financial advisor. You want to ensure that the costs and fees are worthwhile. If you plan to stay in your home for at least another 5 years, refinancing usually makes sense.
- Shop & Eat Healthily
The more trips you make to the grocery store, the more money you’re likely to spend on food. Impulse food buys are not only expensive, they can also negatively impact your health. Have a goal of making one trip to the grocery store and buying enough food to last you throughout the week. This will push you to carefully plan out your meals. Less trips to the store also means less gas used, which also saves money!
To get the most bang for your buck in the grocery stores, shop wisely. Shopping tips include:
- Creating a grocery list
- Using coupons
- Buying in season produce
- Avoiding the center aisles
With these tips, you’ll not only save money, but you’ll also boost your health. Eating a healthy and wholesome diet can minimize your risk of some of the most common health conditions.
- Save Money on Medication
Medication can be a costly monthly expense, even if you have insurance coverage. Having to spend hundreds of dollars on medication can greatly impact your budget. To stick to your budget, find ways to save money on your prescription medications and supplements. One of the best ways to save money is to ask for generic brands of your medications. Generic medications are just as effective but are less expensive because of the lack of a name.
You will also want to talk with your doctor to determine other prescriptions that can be used to treat your conditions. Sometimes lesser popular brands are cheaper than those that are well-known. For upfront savings, discuss coupons with your doctor.
If that doesn’t turn any results, ask the internet. There are all sorts of saving options, including online Viagra discount coupons that save you more on your pharmacy copay. Even if you can’t find one now, it’s a good idea to check frequently online to see if new opportunities become available.
- Use Your Age Discounts
Remember the days when you yearned for those AAA and senior discounts? Well, now they’re here! You will find that many stores offer some sort of senior citizen discount. Saving 10% or 20% here and there may not seem like much at first, but the dollars do eventually add up.
No matter if you’re eating a local restaurant or spending time socializing with friends, don’t hesitate to look for and use your age discounts. You’ve worked hard to earn them, so don’t let them go to waste!
- Sell Your Vehicle
If you live in a relatively walk-friendly community, consider selling your car to increase your available funds. As a senior, driving can be difficult and the cost of owning and insuring a car may be unnecessary costs. By selling your car, you can walk to nearby stores or buddy up with a friend to carpool. This is a win/win for everyone. Selling your car will also indirectly increase how much physical activity you get each day. Brisk walking improves the health of your heart, joints, and bones. This is a win/win all around.
- Ask for Help
If you’re committed to setting a budget and sticking to it, you don’t have to do all of the number crunching and decision making on your own. Discuss the topic with your family members to make sure that you’re comfortable with your budget. You may even want to nominate someone to be the overseer of your finances. This way there is a second set of eyes available to make sure your budget is on track.
Be sure to discuss debt payments, monthly bills, medical costs, and more. Ensuring everyone has a big picture understanding of your financial situation is best.
Living on a budget with fixed-income can be difficult. But, once you create your budget and find ways to save money, the stress of managing your money will be long gone. Keep these tips in mind to avoid financial pitfalls and difficulties during your senior years.