How to Adjust to Low Income in Retirement

You are ready to retire now! You have made up your mind, told the boss, had your farewell dinner, and now you are terrified. Even with all the preparations you have completed before you left your  job, you are concerned with your ability to survive. It is most important that you set up your priorities for the future. These are concerns which are very different than the ones which plagued you before. 

You no longer have to worry about your children’s education, their car, or their wedding. Essentially, the concerns which you must consider involve you and your spouse. Examine your living expenses and evaluate how you can reduce some of your financial obligations.

– Pay off your mortgage. Eliminating this burden will afford you more spending money each month. If this is not possible then try to add extra money to your payments to pay it off earlier. If your home is too expensive for you to afford with your reduced income, consider downsizing and moving elsewhere. In selecting a new area to live, keep in mind areas with a more reasonable cost of living. Living above your means is impossible.

– Eliminate credit card debt. With a limited amount of money coming in, you cannot keep a large balance on your credit cards. Paying the minimum has been shown to be the worst decision you could make. Own your car and keep it in good condition. A well taken care of vehicle will run better and cost you less in repairs.

– Cut out unnecessary expenses. Before you make these decisions, ask yourself if you really need these items, or could you do without them. Do not have your newspaper delivered if you never get to read the weekly papers and only read the Sunday issues. Instead, go to the store for the issues you want. The same goes for books from book clubs and magazine subscriptions as well. The library can provide all the books and magazines you want. In fact, you can even take out movies and music in CD’s and DVDs.These small savings do add up.

– Travel plans…part time job. There may be certain trips you have always wanted to take, but never had the time. Now you have the time, but are cautious about spending the money (remember, do not charge it unless you can pay it off at the end of the month). There is nothing wrong with finding a part time job which will make it easier for you to pay off your trip. Don’t immerse yourself in a job which will return you to the rat race you just left. An easy part time job in a local shop, tutoring, completing seasonal work in local areas, or working at your previous profession part time in a new environment would be helpful.

– Coupon cutter. We do not expect that everyone will become an extreme coupon-er, however, it would be foolish for you to not take advantage of these little slips of paper. Check out the newspapers for their weekly specials and stock up on the items you need. There are coupons for discounts in restaurants, and department stores, cut them out and use them proudly.

You are a lucky person, blessed with the ability to enjoy the next few years of your life without the stress from your job. Keep active doing the activities which challenge your mind and bring you joy. Enjoy every moment with your family and friends…and keep yourself in good health.