Retirement should be something to look forward to. After decades of hard work, you probably can’t wait for that day when you are no longer a wage slave. Unfortunately, many seniors have nothing to look forward to because there are financially destitute.
Imagine living on the breadline, too old to work, reliant on a state pension, and with zero savings to help out if things go wrong. Sure, you could ask your family to help, but not everyone has family who wants to help. So, what are your options?
First of all, work out how much you need to be comfortable. For the avoidance of doubt, comfortable means enough money to put food on the table, pay the bills, pay for some leisure activities, and some extra to put aside for a rainy day or a vacation. What you don’t want is to be barely scraping by. That’s no fun at all.
Work out what your daily living expenses are and compare the final figure to your current income from benefits, pensions, etc. If there is a significant shortfall, you need to work your way through the following tips.
Check Your Benefits Entitlement
There are numerous social security benefits for US citizens, but around $20 billion in benefits go unclaimed each year. That’s a huge pot of money!
If you or your partner/spouse are suffering from chronic health problems, check your benefit entitlement. There could be something you aren’t claiming that might make a real difference to your monthly finances. Government assistance packages are there to help, but you have to be proactive and claim them. Speak to your local social security office to find out more.
Downsize to a Smaller Home
Are you still living in a huge family home? If so, it might be time to downsize to a smaller property. This will release some cash and reduce your day-to-day living expenses. You could also move into a senior living village and enjoy all the advantages of that, including 24/7 assistance, a social life, and healthcare access.
Release Equity in Your Home
If you have no desire to move to a new home and your property has a significant amount of equity tied up in it, investigate reverse mortgages.
Reverse mortgages are a financial product aimed at seniors with equity in their home. You relinquish the equity in return for a monthly payment. You can use this money to supplement your retirement income. It’s basically a loan, so the money doesn’t last forever, but it can be a useful tactic if your retirement income is not enough to support your needs and you have no kids waiting to inherit your home.
However, this is not a decision to take lightly, so seek advice from an independent financial advisor from a reputable company such as American Advisors Group.
Take a Part-Time Job
If you’re in good health, look for a part-time job to earn some extra money. With your experience and skills, there is bound to be an employer who would be happy to have you on board!
Retirement is something to look forward to, not dread, so plan ahead and make the most of your senior years.