Many retirees are worried about their income. In Australia, for example, workers are putting their retirement on hold — with the average retirement age now at 62 (previously at 55). Several factors can affect the state of your retirement finances — however, you can take measures to fortify your savings and ensure a comfortable retirement.
Diversify Your Investments
Having all your eggs in one basket is potentially risky. Recent developments have come to light regarding the vulnerabilities of the financial market. Consider placing a part of your savings in managed investments, government bonds, or precious metals. You can also run a business if you have the acumen and inclination — just make sure you’ve done your research and know the market. One of the best investments you can make is a residence. Paying a monthly rent can be taxing on your pension — a home eliminates that problem and even opens up opportunities to earn money. Rent out a room or two or put them up on Airbnb. You can also build a granny flat and lease your main house.
Curb Your Spending
Once you retire, you’ll be left with limited finances. Life in the big cities might be a little too costly — so consider moving into the suburbs. Property rates are down and now is the best time to look up houses and land that are for sale. Melbourne’s Northern and Western suburbs are good options — keeping you close to the CBD without the high cost of big city living.
Consider installing an 8-kW solar power system in your house. A system like that can cover the energy needs of your house and send a little extra to the grid as a buffer for your nighttime use. An 8-kW system should cost around $8,000. Proper financing, even at green loan rates (7 percent on a 7-year term), should only cost you $120 a month — which should be covered by the savings you’ll get to your electricity bill. Solar power systems last 35-45 years (most have a 25-year guarantee of 80 percent efficiency ratings), so you’ll have free electricity and a saving of more than $100 a month.
One of the biggest drains on retirement funds are medical costs, and one of the easiest ways to avoid them is to maintain a healthy weight. Obesity figures prominently on most medical problems and hospitalizations — figuring prominently in cases of heart conditions, diabetes, high blood pressure, cancers, strokes, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, and even mental problems like depression and anxiety. A healthy diet and a bit of exercise can do wonders in securing your future. Find a diet that you can maintain or just cut your portions. As little as 30 minutes of exercise a day can keep the weight off — so go for regular walks or do a bit of gardening in the morning.
No retiree should worry about drying up their retirement fund. Take steps to cut your spending and do all you can to secure your sources of income.