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Not Saving Enough for Retirement?

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4 Simple Ways to Reduce Spending


Almost everyone looks forward to retirement. The thought of leaving behind a 9-to-5 job and getting to do whatever you want every day is very appealing. The only thing that can sometimes temper your excitement is when money worries get in the way. However, it is actually possible to make simple, practical lifestyle changes to lower overhead after retirement and stretch that pension or 401(k) enough to ease those worries.


When it looks as though retirement income may not be enough to support the overhead costs of an existing home, downsizing can be a very effective solution. Many people end up staying in homes that are much too large after their children grow up and move away, so they are left with the expenses of utilities, insurance, taxes, and upkeep on a home that no longer fits their needs. Looking through new homes for sale could turn up a result with all the amenities the future retirees could want, with less expense and maybe even some equity to cash out of the old house.


A good first step is to review utilities usage. Some simple steps to improve energy efficiency can drastically cut bills for electricity and gas, but other options can do even more. Reviewing cell phone plans, particularly data usage, can go a long way. TV cable packages also provide opportunities for savings. Research bundling packages for TV, internet, and phone. You may find a deal that provides all your needs for a much lower price.


Cars can be a big source of expense. Investing in proper maintenance can head off big repairs later on, so following the manufacturer’s recommendations for service and inspections can help. Good upkeep also lowers fuel consumption, which can be further reduced with good route planning and carpooling. Calculations should also reflect the elimination of daily commuting costs after retirement and the subsequent reduction in wear and tear on tires and the car in general.


It is very important not to skimp on insurance, but it is also wasteful to overpay. By discussing their needs with insurance providers, working people can often find ways to adjust deductibles, alter coverage, and bundle services to reduce costs while still maintaining adequate insurance. A periodic review of all insurance plans is always a good idea, regardless of how soon retirement will be coming along.

Financial management in retirement is all about being prepared. Workers who find ways to maintain a comfortable lifestyle at a lower price, coupling their wise investments and savings with reductions on expenses, will be well-positioned to avoid sacrifice when their working days are over.

Lizzie Weakley is a freelance writer from Columbus, Ohio. In her free time, she enjoys the outdoors and walks in the park with her three-year-old husky, Snowball.

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