Simple savings in retirement

these savings may seem simple but it's good to have a reminder.

Simple savings in retirement

The old saying, ‘a penny saved is a penny earned’ is an adage still relevant today. With interest rates low and the cost of living not getting any cheaper, many people on a fixed income are looking to reduce their expenses. The first step should be to budget regularly – but what about other practical ways we can save? Below, NICRI’s Craig Hall lists nine ways you may be able to save your pennies… er, dollars.

Take advantage of discounts available through government-issued Concession Cards. Anyone in receipt of Government Income Support (GIS) is automatically entitled to a Pension Concession Card (PCC). The PCC may provide discounts on council rates, utilities, car registration and driver’s licence fees; among other things. For those who don’t qualify for an Age Pension but still meet an income test, there is the Seniors Health Card which assists with pharmaceuticals and some other expenses. For those above a certain age (usually 60) and not working full-time, states and territories offer a ‘seniors card’ which may entitle holders to discounts for public transport and other state-based services.

1. To receive discounts, consider buying in bulk, and/or purchase items together with friends, family and neighbours.
2. Look for better banking deals to save on fees and earn more interest. Speak to your financial institution and others to compare fees, interest rates and accessibility. Avoid automatic teller machines fees by using those that offer free transactions.
3. Refer to YOURLifeChoices enews, website and forums for special deals, and to discover what other retirees are experiencing and where they are saving through online forums.
4. Take advantage of shopper dockets and loyalty cards, but avoid unnecessary expenditure just to achieve rewards.
5. Consider funeral bonds as an investment alternative for your ‘final expenses’. Funeral bonds of up to $12,500 are exempt under the means test which may be beneficial to GIS entitlements.
6. Consider energy efficiency in your home. Good insulation; efficient heating and cooling; skylights; energy efficient lighting and solar energy can all contribute to reducing energy consumption and therefore utility bills.
7. Check phone, mobile and internet plans for better pricing and/or those which suit your requirements. Look at your past bills to understand your usage, and shop around for the packages that best suit.
8. Barter where possible. Trade your skills and knowledge for goods and services you require. For example, you might be handy in the garden or in the kitchen, while a neighbour may have worked in the building industry. You may offer to tend their garden in exchange for them patching up a wall or fixing a fence.
9. Don’t be afraid to ask for a discount. Cars, electrical goods and other products are often negotiable and the price shown is frequently a ‘starting point’. Paying by cash may get you a further discount off the price. The worst that can happen is that they say no.

Do you have a tip you would like to share?





    COMMENTS

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    MICK
    20th May 2014
    12:47pm
    Craig: this article was obviously written before the federal budget. Some of the concessions are about to disappear so maybe you need to update the article with a few 'maybes' or 'watch this spaces' so that it reflects the game in play.
    Aurora60
    20th May 2014
    1:09pm
    I thought that too, as concessions are being reduced on all govt charges, elect etc
    particolor
    20th May 2014
    2:51pm
    I threw My Piggy Bank in a Garbage Skip last Wednesday !!..
    PS...Empty
    Rob
    21st May 2014
    1:33pm
    All these tips are fine, Sir. The simple fact is, and has been for a long time now, that people over a certain age who are no longer paying big taxes are expendable. Does anyone think for a minute that the proposed Abbott/Hockey budget savings plan will ever change after a certain time? Perhaps more people should apprise themselves just how much the Treasurer is worth. A person who enjoys this type of wealth/security, not only for himself but for the future university education of his children hasn't a clue what pain will be inflicted upon families and children who wish to gain a university place in the future.
    MICK
    21st May 2014
    3:47pm
    Worse still Rob the next slogan from Abbott about fixing the nation is another lie. The truth is that this will NOT be used to repay the debt but rather be re-allocated, mostly to the rich. That was always the intention.

    You are right that pensioners are never going to get a run out of this government. That is why we ALL need to vote as a BLOCK for a good Independent in our respective electorates. This is what both sides fear more than anything else....being voted out!!

    If this government has anything to say about it seniors will be put outside of the igloo in winter. That will be after they bring back Death Duties.

    We want an election.
    bubyshka
    22nd May 2014
    9:47am
    rob i just read that abbotts girl got into university free, talk about being looked after by mates??
    MICK
    22nd May 2014
    9:57am
    Can you provide the link if Abbott's family are getting a free education. I find this a bit hard to believe as Abbott may be an egotistical despot but even he knows that the line in the sand would be well and truly crossed if he had done a deal for a free education for his own family. Look forward to reading the story so please send the link.
    bubyshka
    22nd May 2014
    9:46am
    well i do wonder why indeed they send this out to ppl when shortly it won'[t be relavent??
    fredlet02
    23rd May 2014
    1:14pm
    all these bludgers that winge about us pensioners wich they say we shouldn't be getting should go back 2 the old days when I was a young bloke I/e when the doller first came in I was payin nupwards of 60 c in the doller and it usta say on my pay slip sumthin 2 do with pension + when we were little people there was no dole that I can remember
    carmencita
    24th May 2014
    6:39pm
    Buying in bulk is impractical...sometimes it just go to waste. As pensioner we are already doing everything mentioned in this article plus depriving ourselves of recreation which costs money. Hockey mentioned about the cost of beer and cigarettes...I don't smoke and I don't indulge in any alcoholic beverage...What else is there to cut ?.....
    unicorn
    12th Jun 2014
    10:25am
    Ounr house is insulated our electricity is as cheap as we can get it {solar panels) at our cost save us a bit, non use of most electricals when ever possible inluding the stove. what else can we dio the state government is now going to sell off the poles & wires to give them money to waste, what else may we do except to make sure that Liberals do not get in again.
    unicorn
    12th Jun 2014
    10:43am
    Mick you asked about a link to the story of abbots family getting educated for free. There wa a stpry not long ago about it on here maybe if yo ask about it on this forum.
    MICK
    12th Jun 2014
    7:17pm
    Thanks unicorn. I googled this and got the story.
    The ICAC needs to have a close look as the scholarship 'awarded' to Tony Abbott's daughter as there is no evidence that the scholarship was made on merit. Comments from students in the class appear to support this.
    The scholarship appears to be little more than payment from somebody wanting favour: payment for services yet to come.
    If our system is in any way fair (it isn't) then this 'gift' needs to be looked at by the ICAC for the illegal instrument it clearly is.

    21st Dec 2016
    12:16pm
    A helpful article, Debbie, but I think it is just a shame such an article is on a retirement site. Our retirement, I believe, should not have to be so focused on watching budgets, but more on enjoying our latter years. But, with having the financially inept government that we do we are being FORCED to make economic sacrifices because of their budget bungling by changes THEY make with punitive legislation. This is NOT democracy, but more like a dictatorship!
    MICK
    21st Dec 2016
    12:27pm
    Streuth eddie...........are you in a time warp mate? Still pertinent of course.
    Tarzan
    21st Dec 2016
    1:53pm
    Tips for saving in retirement was the question and all I can see so far is the normal political whining. I buy petrol when it is on the downcycle, I walk and ride a bike, this keeps me out of the Doctors and saves on fuel, I negotiate on all insurances, make sure that I am getting all of the pensioner subsidies on rates, electricity, and car rego, I use train concessions and Aust post concessions, I have a funeral bond [don't fall for insurance]. and hearing services are free. I have a diesel car[54 l gives me 1000 k's on a trip] I holiday during school terms, not school holidays. I don't give myself an ulcer grizzling about political party's, anything I do say is designed to put a smile on my face, live life folks you can't change anything but your attitude, get on with it.
    East of Toowoomba
    21st Dec 2016
    6:07pm
    Thanks Tarzan, it is refreshing to read a contribution that is relevant to the topic.

    Mick, Frank, Trebor, Old Geezer et el - about your continual political jibing and stiring, I know you have a right to express your opinions and are passionate about doing so, but I often skip over a lot of your posts because they are getting like TV advertisements - repetitive with nothing new to say. It would be lovely to be able to read mainly relevant and thought provoking posts and spirited discussion, rather than the same old, same old that you love to go on about. Please change the record..
    KB
    21st Dec 2016
    1:58pm
    One thing will never c change and that is the system of budgeting.Governments will change over the years and hopefully bring back concessions and better Medicare rebates.
    KB
    21st Dec 2016
    1:58pm
    One thing will never c change and that is the system of budgeting.Governments will change over the years and hopefully bring back concessions and better Medicare rebates.
    sybilla
    21st Dec 2016
    3:30pm
    Shop around among all health care providers and specialists. Fees and gap payments vary massively, this info is available from a quick call to the doctor or practitioner's receptionist. Your health fund and or medicare rebate does not vary (though of course funds do vary depending on the table you are on) but the fees of the various practitioners do, by over 100%. I've been doing this for years without noticing any proportional drop in the quality of the care I enjoy.
    Birdwoman
    21st Dec 2016
    4:35pm
    Good attitude and comments Tarzan.
    CindyLou
    21st Dec 2016
    11:12pm
    I've been doing a bit of financial tidying up - contacted energy supplier and got a 20% discount paying on time - just about to switch heath funds and should save $100 per month there, next thing is house insurance - it's time consuming but I'm committed to budgeting a bit better in future. (shop at Aldi now and save heaps).


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