Downsize – Retirement is a good time to evaluate your living situation. If you have an extra couple of bedrooms that are only used when the family comes to stay at Christmas, you could be sacrificing your own weekly spending power to keep those rooms for one week in 52.
If you’re living in a space that’s larger than you need, consider downsizing to a smaller place. This will not only reduce your housing costs but also potentially your utility bills, rates and maintenance costs.
Reconsider your cars - If you have two cars, consider selling one of them. This will reduce your petrol costs, as well as insurance and maintenance. If you live in location that has good public transport links or is walkable to local amenities, you could ask whether you need the hassle of a car at all, particularly in your later years. And don’t forget the transport benefits offered by your SuperGold card!
Shop around -Grocery shopping and everyday purchases can quickly add up. To reduce spending, consider buying in bulk, particularly when items are on sale, and take advantage of senior discounts. Many supermarkets offer deals to SuperGold card users one day a month, often a Tuesday.
Additionally, plan your meals, make shopping lists, and avoid impulse purchases. Take the same approach to services. You might be able to find better deals for TV, internet, phone and power by switching providers or negotiating with your current provider.
Review insurance plans - Insurance is essential, but it can also be expensive. Review your insurance policies, including health, car, and home and contents insurance. Shop around for competitive rates and consider raising your excess to lower your premiums. Don't forget to ask what discounts are available.
Explore affordable hobbies - Retirement is the perfect time to take up new hobbies and interests, but they don't have to break the bank. Swap more expensive entertainment like dining out, movies and concerts for affordable or free activities that align with your passions. Consider taking up gardening, hiking, or bridge, or joining local clubs and organisations. These activities can be enjoyable without costing a fortune.
Be mindful of utility usage - Reducing energy and water consumption can have a significant impact on your monthly bills. Invest in energy-efficient appliances and lighting, and make a habit of turning off lights, electronics, and appliances when not in use.
For more energy-saving tips, revisit this article.
Know your benefits – Make sure you know exactly what benefits you’re entitled to, which could be more than just NZ Super. Perhaps you’re eligible for a community services card, help with housing costs, a rates rebate, or disability-related assistance. And remember to make the most of all the offers and discounts available through your SuperGold card.