If budgeting and saving are not things you’ve had much success with in the past, it’s important to make changes so that you can continue to enjoy your life as you get older. Read on to find out how to budget for life!
We tend to become more set in our ways as we age, whether it’s settling into certain spending habits or defining our personal style – we tend to become more ‘ourselves’ as time goes by. It can be good and bad news when it comes to money though. For instance, if you’ve been a champion saver all of your life, you’ll likely maintain these habits as you age.
However, you can easily fall into difficulty in your later years if you haven’t developed the habits required so you can live your life as you envisaged.
Keep reading to learn how budgeting and spending habits might need to switch as you get older.
#1 – Budgeting to accommodate new priorities and commitments
Many parents who send their children to private schools say that when their children graduate, they’ll continue to practice budgeting so they can put the money they paid on school fees aside to get ahead in their savings.
Well, this doesn’t always play out in reality, mostly because our priorities and commitments change as time goes on. It can become hard to stay committed when the circumstances around you are no longer as relevant.
For example, whether you’re exploring a new place to live, whether that’s your first rental or a retirement villages in Sydney, you might find your current expenditures are working against you.
Budgeting smartly means that you will map out where you want to be in one, two, five and ten years’ time and evaluate your current spending to see how you can better support yourself to fully realise your future plans.
#2 – Budgeting out subscriptions and memberships
So many of us have subscriptions and memberships to programs and loyalty services that are simply not serving our values or needs anymore. Does this sound familiar?
Maybe you were once an avid news reader, but these days you prefer to read fiction or listen to podcasts. It might be time to review these services when you are budgeting to see whether you still need to be paying for them.
Similarly, your diet and exercise as a senior might look a little different to what it did in your 20’s – for instance, you may need to invest in different food choices and new medications or alter your exercise expenditures.
And a tip: if you’re like most people and have lost track of what memberships you are paying for, take a careful look at your monthly bank statement or join one of the subscription tracking apps that can do the work for you.
#3 – The need for financial planning and advice
You could argue that financial planning and good advice is important at any stage of life, although they grow increasingly important as we get older.
Seek an expert financial planner or adviser to help you understand what investment or other financial opportunities you have, ie where to invest your savings and income, what tax advantages are available and so forth.
There are so many ways to clean up your financial health, and it is difficult to identify them all on your own. This is why consulting a financial professional should be considered a top priority for anyone, especially if you nearing retirement.
Remember, financial advisers are not just for people with lots of money or no money. Everyone can benefit from expert advice, at any time in their life.
#4 – Different entitlements
There are different government benefits or entitlements available for different people. For example, students can access study benefits, whilst Australian seniors can access a pension payment and seniors concession card – as well as other benefits, which might influence how they save and spend their money.
Look out for deals and offers from the services you use to see if there are any that are tailored to your situation. Utility providers, internet providers and insurance companies (to name just a few) are known to give favourable deals to different demographics. This might also shift how you spend your money and who you invest it with.
A financial advisor might also be able to direct you to entitlements and benefits, which is yet another reason why enlisting their expert assistance is highly recommended.
#5 – Budgeting after the empty nest
When one or all the children in your home move out of home, it can leave your finances looking very different. Similarly, even if you don’t have children but a partner departs, leaving you on your own, this can have major impacts on your savings and spending habits.
For example, it’s common for empty nesters to downsize after just a few years without their children, simply because they often find that they have no need for their family home and all of the maintenance and costs that go with it.
These are just some of the ways our spending habits and budgeting needs change as we get older. What changes do you anticipate happening to you and your own spending habits as you age? Considering this question will help you feel excited and informed about the next chapters of your life.