Understanding Financial Benefits Available to Seniors
Planning for retirement takes strategy, patience, and hard work. It can be very intimidating. Some older adults put off retiring because they fear they will run out of money. While social security and Medicare are well-known senior citizen benefits, there are other ways older adults can save money during retirement.
Senior Citizen Assistance Programs and Discounts
Here are a few money-saving ideas you can explore:
Financial support for energy bills:Utility expenses can take a bite out of an older adult’s budget, especially in regions where the climate is extreme. Seniors on a tight budget might be eligible to receive assistance with energy bills or home weatherization. In addition to exploring programs your local utility providers might offer, read “Energy Assistance Benefits” on the National Council on Aging’s website.
Maximize your Medicare benefit:It can be tempting to skip exploring health insurance options during Medicare’s open enrollment period and just sticking with what you have. The process can indeed be overwhelming and time consuming. But you might be paying more than you need for health-care expenses. Start early during the Medicare annual open enrollment period, which runs from October 15 through December 7, and thoroughly evaluate your options. If you need assistance, schedule a free, in-person appointment with a Medicare expert. You can search for one using your zip code at gov.
Learn about reverse mortgages:If you have a significant amount of equity in your home, a reverse mortgage is another option to consider. Sometimes referred to as a home equity conversion mortgage, these loans allow adults, age 62 and older, to convert part of their home equity into cash. You can continue living in your home, while putting the equity you earned over the years to use in your everyday life. If you are considering a reverse mortgage, it’s important to work with an experienced, trustworthy financial advisor.
Dig in to discounts:While it’s something many people associate with early-bird specials at restaurants, a wide variety of businesses offer discounts. Restaurants, coffee shops, grocery stores, fitness clubs, and even clothing retailers often have a senior discount or senior day. Other discounts, including for hotels and travel, are available to older adults who belong to AARP. Over the course of a month or a year, these small discounts can add up to big savings for seniors.
Carefully manage bills:As you are planning for retirement and after you retire, keeping a close eye on your expenses is important. This includes paying bills on time to avoid late fees. If you are able, paying premiums like car and homeowner’s insurance annually, in lieu of quarterly, might also earn you a discount.
One final suggestion is to remember that where you live matters as you grow older. Some areas of the country are less expensive for retirees, as are some senior housing communities.
If you would like to learn more about retirement communities, call us today at 800-304-8061. One of our experienced care advisors can help you explore your options.
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