Today, many retirees don’t have 401(k)s or any other pension plan. As a result, many senior citizens will have to get by using just their Social Security earnings. For those who had been accustomed to living well beyond that income bracket, making the necessary adjustments can be a tough process. Yet, with the right information, it is possible to get by comfortably when making less than $1500 a month.
Here are a number of tips that can help seniors budget on a fixed income.
Eliminate Home Maintenance Costs
A senior’s money might be better spent renting a house than trying to maintain their homes. For seniors, the cost of maintaining a home is usually far greater than the cost of renting. In addition, the stress of rising interest rates can also be overwhelming to seniors. A one bedroom apartment would be more than enough for a senior, or they could consider getting a roommate and renting a decent two-bedroom apartment. If they take the time to look around it is possible to get a two-bedroom apartment at around $700 a month. You can search easily at either ApartmentGuide or Craigslist.
Get Rid of the Car
For seniors living in the city, there is no reason to insist on holding on to their cars. The public transportation system can serve them just as well. The situation in the rural areas might be a little difficult though since they might need the car to get to doctor appointments and other important undertakings. For city dwellers, the cost of maintaining a car can easily be $300 per month. This is just not practical for someone living on a fixed income of less than $1500 a month. In addition, the possibility of getting involved in traffic accidents increases as people get older. Taking these things into consideration, it might be best to get rid of their car.
Eat Healthier Food
It may seem difficult to find healthy food alternatives when living on a limited budget, but it is possible with the right planning each month. Foods like oatmeal and farina for breakfast is a cost effective and nutritious way to start off the day. Quinoa is a great food to help you get a lot of nutrition for a small price tag, and it provides omega fatty acids, protein, and many of the essential minerals for an aging adult’s body.
On top of feeling better from eating healthier, you can also spend less on doctor’s visits if you work harder to take care of your health through the foods you eat. Taking advantage of supermarket sales and coupons is necessary and can make eating good every day much easier.
Cut Out Unnecessary Spending
This often ‘goes without saying’ but it is good to go over once more. Take out expenses that you simply do not need to have anymore. Perhaps you have magazine subscriptions that you do not read, or movie and cable packages that never get watched. You may even indulge in some vices like the occasional lottery ticket or pack of cigarettes. Cutting those small things out of your budget can go a long way towards helping you establish a budget that has enough room to cover all of your needs. It just takes a little thought and creativity over where your funds are currently going to give you a little more wiggle room.