Most of us look forward to the day we can retire from our jobs—maybe kick back, relax and take it easy for a change. Or, for those who can’t sit still, maybe this is a time to check off bucket list items.

No matter how you plan on spending your golden years, you’ll likely need to save some money for when it’s time to cash in. With some careful planning, you can find ways to enjoy this time—without the constant worry of finances.

5 Money-Saving Tips for the Dream-Chasing Retiree

  1. Don’t be afraid to ask for the senior discount!

    Enjoy access to a world of discounts by becoming a member of AARP or American Seniors Association for a nominal annual fee—$16 and $15, respectively. Free apps like Senior Discounts Club or Flipp can help you easily discover savings at your favorite restaurants, travel, and stores like Target, Walgreens, and Walmart.

  2. Declutter or downsize your home!

    Retirement is the perfect time to take on new projects. Get rid of unwanted items in your garage or storage unit, then have a yard sale or donate it to a family in need. If your kids have moved out, look at the empty nest phase as an opportunity to start fresh with a smaller home. Consider the savings you could generate—lower property taxes, utility bills, maintenance costs and homeowner’s insurance premiums—just to name a few!

  3. Consider donating or selling an extra vehicle.

    Now that you’re no longer commuting to work, perhaps you can get by with just one car instead of two. Sell the car for extra cash or donate the vehicle to a charity. Plus, it will save you on car insurance bills, maintenance and gasoline expenses.

  4. Keep doing what you enjoy, but less frequently.

    If you’re in the habit of eating out five times a week, try cutting back to three. It’s not a dramatic change, but you will notice the savings to your wallet. Think of the other ways you could cut back. How about golfing two days a week instead of four?

  5. Treat your Special Pay Plan or Health Reimbursement Arrangement as a rainy day fund.

    If you currently have retirement benefits through MidAmerica, it makes sense to hold off on distribution or reimbursement requests until necessary. Why? Because your benefit funds are invested for potential tax-free or tax-deferred growth. This means the longer your funds stay in your account, the more money you could potentially end up with down the road. Your 403(b)/401(a) Special Pay Plan and Health Reimbursement Arrangement is there when you need it, but it has the potential to keep growing when you don’t.

These are just a few simple ways to save money as a retiree, which we hope make you realize that saving money doesn’t need to be difficult. Living the happy retirement you deserve can be as simple as sticking to your budget, keeping track of what you spend, and appraising your spending for any savings opportunities. If you have questions about financial planning or need personalized advice, please consult your financial advisor.

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