Powerful Money Saving Tips for Seniors
For seniors on a fixed income, making ends meet can sometimes feel like an impossible task. At the same time, seniors may also face health problems or disabilities. These can be costly in their own right and can make the process of saving money that much more difficult. Thankfully, there are a number of approaches that you can take.
For seniors on a fixed income, making ends meet can sometimes feel like an impossible task. At the same time, seniors may also face health problems or disabilities. Such challenges make money saving tips for seniors an important topic.
After all, health problems, disabilities, and other challenges can all be costly in their own right and can make the process of saving money that much more difficult.
Even if you are managing to live successfully from one week to the next, finding ways to cut your expenses may still be an important goal. In particular, you don’t want to be in the situation where one bill or one crisis puts you in a financial situation that you can’t recover from.
Thankfully, there is a range of different ways that you can go about decreasing your expenses and saving money. In this post, we’re going to cover many of these approaches and show you multiple money saving tips for seniors. Some of these are simple, while others may be more complicated. You may also find that some of these suggestions are not relevant to your current situation, while other ones may be a perfect fit.
Many of these ways to cut expenses will apply to just about any lifestyle or financial situation. After all, even if you have no financial issues, finding ways to cut down on your expenses is always a good thing, especially if you can do so without impacting your lifestyle.
Money Saving Tips for Seniors
Cutting Down Spending
The simplest advice that you will hear about reducing costs is to simply cut down your spending. Now, we all have expenses that have to be paid, but many of us also spend on frivolous things.
Cutting down our cuts is often more difficult than it sounds. Let’s face it. Some purchases make us feel better emotionally. So, how do we get around this?
Well, there are some tricks that you can use to cut down spending effectively that actually work.
At the same time, there are also ways to cut down your essential bills. After all, no matter what we do, there are always going to be some bills that we have to pay. But, sometimes, we end up paying more than we actually need to.
Rely on Cash
Nowadays, it’s easy to pay for just about everything using a card. But, regardless of whether that card is credit or debit, that process makes it easy to spend money.
One problem is that when we spend money off a card, it doesn’t seem to have as much significance – probably because we aren’t physically handing over money.
At the same time, it’s very easy to lose track of just how much money we spend from a card. Even if you try to keep a tally in your head, it’s easy to forget or miscount.
One simple way around this is to rely on cash instead of money off your card.
By doing this, you have a better idea of exactly how much you have spent and know more about how much money you have left. You may also find that you are less likely to spend money as a consequence.
Some people also choose to just take as much money as they need with them. For example, you might take $50 with you if that is your grocery shopping budget.
However, if you choose to do this, it’s probably a good idea to have some backup on you because things don’t always turn out how we expect them to.
Go Without a Car
For a couple with multiple cars, selling one car is a sensible way to reduce costs and also earn a little money.
If one or both of you is retired, then you may be able to figure out ways to meet your needs with only the one vehicle.
In some cases, it may also be possible to go without a car altogether, especially if you live in a very walkable neighborhood. In theory, not having to pay maintenance and other costs for a care can be an area where you save a considerable amount of money.
However, this is a decision that you have to be very careful about.
Many seniors struggle with the issue of not having good transportation options, which can end up compromising both their physical and their mental health. At the same time, there is also the risk that your circumstances will change in some way and you will need a car in the future.
For example, you might have to move to a different neighborhood or you may have a family member who gets sick.
Additionally, you may find that alternative methods of transport end up being just as expensive as having your own car. This might not be an issue if you rely mostly on buses and there are some alternative forms of transportation that can help as well. Nevertheless, the cost of transportation in your area is something to seriously consider.
So, going without a car can be a good way of cutting down costs but only if it suits your situation and lifestyle.
On a side note, you can also decrease your costs simply by cutting down on how much you use your car.
For example, if walking isn’t a problem for you, there may be some places that you can walk to instead of driving. Likewise, busing may be an option in some situations or even carpooling with a friend.
On the plus side, opting for your sneakers instead of Uber or your car can lead to more exercise and new friends, which may be an additional reason to avoid using your car all of the time.
Look for New Medicare Coverage
Many people assume that their current Medicare coverage is still going to be the best deal but often this isn’t the case.
Instead, it’s worth taking the time to look at the different options available and find out which one is best suited for your current situation.
If doing this seems a little overwhelming, then you may want to find a friend or a family member that understands the concepts and can help.
Pay for Services Annually (If Possible)
Many services offer the option of paying annually. Insurance is one example of this but there are also countless others.
Paying annually does mean a larger cost up-front but typically you end up paying less than if you were paying week-to-week or month-to-month throughout the year.
Nevertheless, this is something to be a little careful with.
You don’t want to be paying a lump sum if doing so means that you cannot pay other bills. Likewise, you need to plan for this payment so that you can make it each year – which will typically mean putting some money aside each month.
Don’t Buy New Books or Movies
Books and movies get expensive quickly and most of the time you only get one use out of them. Now, this doesn’t mean that you can’t read or watch movies, it just means that you need to do it in a different way.
For example, libraries are a great place to get books to read. Likewise, there are services that rent out movies. If you are up with technology, there are also ways to stream movies online and even read books this way.
But, there are still options even if you want your own physical books and movies.
In particular, you can often buy them second hand, such as from garage sales, second hand stores or fairs. In many cases, you may end up paying almost nothing for what you want.
You can also get books and movies through sites like eBay and Craigslist. With this approach, you may end up paying a little more but you also have a better chance of getting exactly what you’re looking for.
Regardless of what approach you take, all of these different ways end up being much less expensive than buying books or movies new. Plus, the process can be pretty fun.
Be Smart with Shopping
For many people, going into the grocery store almost always means that they’ll come out with at least one item that they didn’t intend to buy. Certainly, having a treat now and again isn’t a bad thing and we all need this to some degree.
However, if you are going to the grocery store multiple times in a week, that practice can end up getting pretty expensive.
Limiting your shopping to once a week (or even once a fortnight, if possible) and planning ahead can be a good way of decreasing how much food you buy and saving money.
You might also consider generic brands.
This is an area to be careful with, as some generic products are low-quality. Others aren’t that much cheaper than branded products.
But, many generic products are cheaper than branded options and are just as good. These ones are a fantastic way to save money.
One other thing is the idea of buying in bulk, especially from places like Costco.
In theory, buying in bulk can be a great way to save money. However, you need to be very careful about actually doing this.
One problem is that people often end up buying more than they intend to when they start going to stores like Costco, which negates the whole purpose. Likewise, people might buy things like candy in bulk because it’s a good price, then eat it much faster than they would normally.
If you take those approaches, you aren’t saving money at all.