One of the biggest questions that new retirees face is, “How am I going to afford retirement?” Living without a constant stream of income forces every retiree to examine their finances, go through their expenses and determine just how much money they’ll need to pay their bills and enjoy their retirement.
Being able to afford retirement doesn’t mean you need to live off of ramen noodles and water. There are easy ways to save money that can cut back your expenses and help you save money.
Cut unnecessary expenses.
There are certain things that you pay for on a monthly or yearly basis that you truly don’t need. For example, since you’re retired, you may no longer need to pay for disability insurance. If you are single or widowed without any dependents, you may not need to pay for life insurance. Plus, you may be paying extra for cell phone service or cable expenses that you don’t use. Go through a list of your expenses with a fine-tooth comb and determine where you can make cuts.
Take advantage of senior discounts.
Many restaurants, grocery stores and entertainment venues provide discounts for senior citizens, so make sure that you ask about these promotions when you’re out and about. Some companies offer these discounts every day while other companies only offer senior discounts on a certain day of the week. Make sure that you know what discounts your entitled to and use them to your advantage.
Get a part-time job.
You can easily supplement your income by getting a part-time job after you retire. You can decide how many days a week you want to work and for how long and find a company that is willing to accept your requests. You can then use the money you earn from this job to help cover some of your expenses or use it for leisurely spending. You just want to make sure that your part-time job is doing something that interests you, otherwise you will not want to go to work on your scheduled days, and this is not a good way to start your retirement.
If you are paying for a home that is too big for your needs, it may be time to relocate. Use your retirement to move to a new town that has cheaper living expenses, and downgrade your large home to a smaller apartment or condo. You may even want to consider moving to a retirement community, as these tend to be much more affordable than living on your own.
Eliminate unnecessary purchases.
Did you stop and grab a coffee on your way to work everyday? Now that you’re no longer working, you should start making coffee at home instead of buying one everyday. Did you always go out to lunch while at work? Now, make sure that you always have groceries in the home and start making more meals at home instead of dining out all the time. This will save you a great deal of money in the long run.
About the Author: Jessica Brown lives in Boston and works at a senior center. She enjoys writing and is currently giving advice to seniors on cutting retirement costs.