With most seniors living on a fixed income, it’s important to be mindful of your financial decisions to make the most of your money. Everything should be considered, from significant monthly expenses like mortgages, health care, and transportation to more minor, everyday purchases. Laying out your finances and taking a deeper look into your spending can reveal how you may be able to save money and stretch your dollar! Let’s explore several areas where you may be able to shave off some fluff to get more bang for your buck while eliminating unnecessary spending.
If you are looking for assisted living and memory care services in Wichita, don’t hesitate to contact Comfort and Love Senior Care Homes. We are located in East Wichita, one mile off K-96 at East 21st Street North, near shops, restaurants, medical offices, and churches.
First and foremost, let’s begin by taking a closer look at the non-negotiables, including all your monthly expenses that cannot be avoided and are necessary to live. Such items include housing, food, electricity, and health care. While we cannot eliminate these costs, it’s possible to reduce them if you are willing to make changes or do some research.
Shelter is one of the most basic human needs and one of our most significant monthly expenses. With that being said, it is easily one of the first places where we can most drastically reduce our spending. There are a few ways we can go about doing so. The most obvious option is to downsize; this cuts costs in many areas, including, but not limited to, our monthly mortgage payment, utilities, insurance, and property taxes. If we reduce the size of our home, we will see the rates drop in all other areas as well. For example, it’s less expensive to heat and cool a 1,000-square-foot house, apartment, or condominium than a 2,500-square-foot residence.
Refinancing is another way to shave down your monthly expenses. If you still have a mortgage, now may be the time to speak with a lender and explore your options. Though we are starting to see interest rates rise again, they’ve been at an all-time low for the last year. Check with your lender to see if you can lock into a lower rate and reduce your monthly mortgage payments.
If you are in a position where having a roommate makes sense, this is another way to cut down housing costs. Sharing a space with a friend or family member allows both parties to reduce their expenses by splitting the costs drastically. Although having a roommate may not be the ideal situation for all, it may benefit many seniors. Aside from the financial benefits, it may also provide company and companionship that may be otherwise lacking, especially to avoid social isolation.
We need food to live; there’s no way around it! Groceries, or food in general, are usually one of the top 3 monthly expenses in every household. Although food costs cannot be cut out completely, they can be controlled. There are clever ways to lower your grocery costs without drastically changing how you eat or sacrificing quality or quantity. Creating a weekly shopping list and making just one visit to the store is the best way to avoid unnecessary spending and consolidate your food bill. Using store flyers to meal plan and shop sale items allows you to shave down on extra costs. You can also grow your own herb and vegetable garden to have fresh produce at a low price. It’s also a fantastic way to get some outdoor exercise.
Meal swapping with friends and family is another excellent way to get the most out of your grocery budget. You can coordinate with a group to each cook one day of the week; the idea is to cook in batches and then divide the meal into smaller servings to distribute amongst the group. Similarly, you can also make cooperative grocery lists with those near you. Perishable items such as eggs, cheese, bread, and milk often go bad before you have the opportunity to consume them all. However, splitting these items with neighbors allows you to take a fraction of the cost and eliminate the waste.
Preventative healthcare can help lower healthcare costs by treating and preventing diseases before requiring emergency care. Something as simple as attending regular annual checkups and routine dental visits can prevent more considerable expenses later on. You can even practice preventative care at home by brushing and flossing daily, exercising frequently, and eating a healthy, balanced diet filled with nutrient-dense foods. Also, taking steps to prevent a fall-related injury will save a trip to the emergency room and thousands of dollars in healthcare costs.
While our basic needs must be met and prioritized, there are still many non-essentials that we desire to fit into our budget. Entertainment, hobbies, travel, and shopping are a few of the most common areas to spend lagniappe funds. We highly recommend taking full advantage of senior discounts for any of these items. You will frequently see them available for movie or theater tickets, restaurants, travel accommodations, museum admissions, etc.; if they are not advertised, inquire about any special rates they may have for senior citizens.
We hope the article above inspires you to get a hold of your finances so you make the most of your golden years. If you or someone you know needs assisted living or memory care in Wichita, Kansas, contact Comfort and Love Senior Care Homes at 316-260-4330. Our expert caregivers are excited to meet your family and make them a part of ours!