To retire at 65 is to achieve part of the American dream. While it seems easy to save a little each year and eventually retire on it, your circumstances may not have allowed for it. While retiring at 65 without retirement savings is possible, it isn’t ideal. On top of that, it certainly isn’t easy. Despite this, it can be done, so long as you have the know-how. Your retirement may look different than most at the beginning, but getting rid of your day job is still on the table. You just have to take the right steps to get there.
Utilize Your Social Security
This one is sort of a no-brainer, but still important to add. If you have lived and worked in America for a long time, then you have probably paid quite a bit into Social Security. So, it is important to apply for your SSA retirement benefits as early as possible. This will allow you a fixed income every moth that you can live off of. It isn’t much, but it is a start. If you truly have zero saved for retirement, then it is absolutely vital to sustain yourself in retirement.
Rent Out Your Home (If You Own One)
This may be a touchy one for most, but can really help you sustain a long-lasting retirement. If you own your home, and have no savings, renting the home out is a great way to get a little extra income and evaluate how much you actually need in a home. Not only that, but someone else will be paying your mortgage. Once you are starting to run low on money, you have the option to sell your home and use the money as your retirement savings. Investing this money in a decent stock account or even municipal bonds (if you get enough money) will allow you to add to your annual income without taking a job. This shouldn’t reduce your Social Security benefits, so it will all add to your current standard of living. This is made especially effective if you also lower your costs.
When you retire, your needs at home are typically reduced. Odds are, you don’t have kids in the house anymore. As people get older, they don’t use as much space at home as before. Whether you rent or own your current dwelling, consider renting out a smaller space to reduce costs.
Another great tip is to try cooking at home more, since you have more time to do so. This will help you not only learn a valuable skill, but also keep your food costs low. You’re retired, so you’ve earned a few nights out here and there; just don’t go overboard.
Cutting costs wherever possible is going to be your main goal, as not having retirement savings really puts a damper on your standard of living in retirement. Once you start to be more frugal, you will find yourself with more money to do the special things you couldn’t do while you had a job. So, be responsible, and make your retirement as enjoyable as possible!
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