Are you a senior trying to survive retirement? You aren’t alone. AARP reports that 48% of seniors over 55 have no retirement savings and have to live as frugally as possible. They often think that they have to stop worrying about saving the environment if they want to make ends meet.
There is an absurd misconception that eco-friendly living and saving money are incompatible. In reality they go hand in hand, because sustainability starts with consuming fewer resources. Therefore, sustainable living also means spending less money.
Implementing a sustainable lifestyle and saving money are two very compatible life changes. Money plays an important role in everyday life and many people are afraid to spend more money if they pay attention to sustainability. Retireees on tight budgets are no exceptions.
However, misconceptions about the green lifestyle need to be put to rest. It is not for the privileged, but for conscious people, as well as seniors trying to survive retirement. Going green can help you save money on a fixed retirement savings.
Seniors Can Be Eco-Friendly and Save Money at The Same Time
Are you a senior on a tight budget? Do you want to live an eco-friendly lifestyle? The best way to save money is to act wisely, not to buy things with eco-labels and more expensive. But acting wisely means reflecting on your own needs and always thinking about the medium and long-term consequences for your own health, for other people and for the planet.
Organic food and fashion may be more expensive than conventional options, but the key to saving money is to buy only what you really need. You will have an easier time making it through retirement if you keep this in mind.
1. Take Out A Reverse Mortgage Instead Of Moving
Are you having trouble living in a larger home than you can afford? You might be tempted to sell your home and move. However, this has a lot of downsides, such as the fact that you have to buy a new home and pay for moving costs.
A better option is to use a reverse mortgage calculator and see if you can get money from a reverse mortgage instead. You won’t have to pay it back while you are alive as long as you keep your house!
2. Use Public Transportation
The cheapest part of driving a car is getting a driver’s license. The other expenses really add up: car maintenance, parking, insurance, maintenance and gas are very expensive these days. You could save a lot of money if you did without a car! You don’t have to travel as much during retirement and might not be able to keep your license as you age anyways. You will also protect the environment in the process!
3. Buy Second Hand
The vintage look is in! You will also save a lot of money if you rely on used clothes, furniture and household utensils.
There are numerous exchange platforms where you can find almost anything you need and you can give an outlet to those you no longer use.
Thrift stores and flea markets are other options. There is a reason that lots of frugal seniors use them while living on retirement.
4. Take Your Own Bags with You When You Go Grocery Shopping
Plastic bags, even if they are compostable, and paper bags don’t just cost money. They are also an unnecessary burden on the environment. They also break down faster than the old jute or cotton bag. There is no excuse not to be carrying your own bag at all times. Think of it like underwear or footwear, which you would never go out without.
5. Online Shopping Is the Last Resort
A growing number of seniors are using the Internet these days. But is it really good for the environment? Also, is it always best for your wallet on a tight pension?
The sustainable economy is local. Do you want to live in an environment surrounded by people who can make a living? Do you care how your neighbors fare? If you are concerned about the local economy, then leave your money the closer to your home whenever possible.
Take an interest in the neighborhood stores, look for what you need and only buy on the Internet if necessary.
You will probably also save more money than you think. Lots of local retailers have great deals that don’t get advertised often, which gives you a lot of opportunities to live more frugally in your Golden Years.
6. Save Money and Waste with Meal-Prep
Whether you are buying coffee to go in the morning, getting a snack for lunch or a quick pizza in the evening, fast food is not cheap or healthy. It is also terrible for the planet. A alternative is preparing your own meals. This is a new habit that has become very fashionable, especially for traveling seniors. It also makes more sense to prepare your own food if you are retired, since you will be spending more time at home anyways.
Also, you save tons of waste and minimize your carbon footprint by cooking your own food.
7. Don’t View Consumption as A Reward
Did you pass a test, ace a job interview or just have a tough day? Reward yourself with a walk, time with your loved ones or a nice evening with your favorite book. Because if you reward yourself with a shopping tour, you will regret spending the money and the “happiness” will have only lasted a short period of time. You will also leave a larger carbon footprint in the process.
8. Use Reusable Coffee Filters
You may still drink coffee during retirement. If this is the case, please give up coffee capsules. Traditional filter coffee or coffee from the Italian coffee maker tastes better than that of the coffee machine.
However, you should use washable cotton coffee filters. They save money and, above all, a large amount of unnecessary packaging waste. A pound of coffee capsules is much more expensive than organic coffee beans or ground coffee.
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