Special Report

What You Can Do If Coronavirus Is Threatening Your Retirement

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16. Join AARP

Anyone over 50 can join AARP (American Association of Retired Persons). It has 38 million members, and a membership costs $12.50 a year. Because of its membership size, AARP regularly lobbies the government for better benefits for seniors.

More important to most members is the leverage the association has with companies and its ability to negotiate discounts on products and services that range as widely as eye glasses, Medicare supplement insurance, and pharmacy. AARP also offers discounts for the more daily costs, from cell phone service discounts to food shopping deals.

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17. Cut household expenses

People don’t often review their electric, heating , cable, or even home insurance bills, but finding ways to reduce the costs of these bills can help at any time, and especially now. For example, lowering the thermostat a few degrees for about a third of the day can cut electric bills by 10%.

It is not unusual for people to have a cable TV service that dates back decades. Ending those subscriptions and watching TV over the internet can save as much as $100 a month. Free energy audits can also be a way to give you information on how to save money.

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18. Look at your cellphone bill

People of all ages ignore the costs of cellular phone subscription plans. They also often upgrade to new phones when they become available even though their current phones are advanced enough and operate well. There are several ways to cut a bill by as much $100 a month. One change that is easy to make and can cut charges sharply is by using Wi-Fi when possible. It is a less expensive way to connect to the internet. Finally, don’t upgrade to that expensive new iPhone if you can’t afford it.

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19. Take senior discounts

Many discounts for seniors are available at all kinds of places. People who qualify for these are usually 60 or older. Huge movie chain AMC offers discounts of as much as 30% on ticket prices. Utilities companies like Georgia Power offer some seniors discounts on their energy bills. Big retailers, including Walmart, CVS, Home Depot, and Target, regularly have discounts on popular items.

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20. Plan your funeral

A funeral can cost people money long before they die. So called “final expense insurance” covers the cost of coffins and burials among other expenses. Like most insurance, payments are based on what the insurance company will have to pay out. According to the National Funeral Directors Association, the median cost of a funeral is $7,200. By sticking to the essentials and forgoing the limos, flowers, and food, the cost of the insurance declines. It is worth noting that a cremation costs $1,000 less than a traditional burial.

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