Managing Money as you Age
Finances are something we all worry about throughout our lives, but particularly so as we age. Typically, as you get older income decreases but expenses stay constant or sometimes increase. However, with the right strategies and plans in place, you should stretch your budget and still live comfortably in retirement.
Change up your Savings: As you hit your 40s and 50s, start rethinking your savings. How is your retirement savings looking? It can be worthwhile to put more of your income into a savings account or bonds. Don’t forget to take advantage of matching contributions by your employer. Seek out a financial planner so you make informed decisions with your hard-earned money.
Evaluate Monthly Expenses: Track where your money is really going. As much as you want to help others, consider your own needs. Look for unnecessary expenses or areas where to cut back. Can you cut costs by going with another provider, consolidating, or refinancing any loans? Consider downsizing your home if you have unused extra space with high maintenance costs just eating into your budget. You can still live well on less!
What daily or weekly activities are eating away at your savings? You also have to weigh these items with what gives you the most joy in your life.
Look for ways to Save: Take advantage of discount and savings programs on things like prescriptions, travel, and purchases. Look for sales, use coupons, and ask for senior discounts when possible. Memberships at Costco, AAA and other club-like companies offer many savings incentives.
Hold out on Social Security: If you can wait a few more years to start drawing Social Security, you may receive higher payments. This may help stretch your income as you age and help your savings last a little longer.
Stay Active: Cut back on healthcare expenses by staying active and becoming proactive about your health. Maintain a healthy diet and engage in regular physical activity to stay in shape and ward off illness and injury. Schedule maintenance visits to the doctor and don’t ignore any warning signs of illness or disease.
Think Ahead: Be realistic about the future. If you know you won’t be working for another 10 years, don’t plan your finances around the idea that you will. Weigh the costs and benefits of aging in place, downsizing, or moving to an assisted living community. Look at all of the associated expenses to decide the optimal time to buy and sell or to make other major transitions. Selling furniture and property you no longer need can also be a way to provide some extra income.
Have an Open Discussion: Invite your children into your financial world and share your fiscal information. They are probably going to be helping you down the road so why not give them any monetary surprises. Make sure they are clear on your plans for your home and any other large assets.
Practicing good financial skills can allow you to maximize your savings and get the most out of your retirement. Just because you are on a fixed income doesn’t mean you can’t live comfortably. The earlier you start planning and managing your money wisely, the better off you will be. Saving a little bit at a time can add up over the years.
If you’re weighing your options and looking toward senior services or assisted living, contact Always Best Care today to schedule a free consultation. We can also assist you with referrals as necessary. It’s not too early to start planning for your future and lining up the supports and services you may need as you age. Call David Baim at Always Best Care (267) 217-7059 Or email [email protected] to get started.