Thursday, October 1, 2015

Using Experiments in Retirement Planning

It can be extremely difficult to know what retirement is truly going to be like before you get there.  And once you’re there, it’s going to be too late to prepare.  However, there are some relatively simple – and cost-effective – experiments you might try well in advance to your golden years in an effort to better ready yourself for retirement.  While these experiments could be designed to prepare you for a future that may be decades away, they might also have significant ramifications in cutting your costs in the here and now.

Saying no to expensive coffee
While it might seem difficult for those who crave that fancy gourmet coffee from the local coffee shop each morning, avoiding such temptations can lead to big savings and carry over into purchases for things like donuts or pastries, fast food, and similar convenience-type items.

CNN Money noted in 2011, “Americans spend an average of $8.43 each time they stop at a coffee shop, according to data compiled by With caffeine fiends filling up an average of 46 times last year, this adds up to a total annual bill of $385.97.”

Making these items an occasional treat rather than a regular buy can cut costs substantially and help make such items more special if you do indulge just once in a while. 

Dining in
According to, “The average monthly cost of Dining Out for people in the U.S. is $281.”

Reducing meals out – and the additional expenses that come along with them like taxes and tips – may act to push you to make tasty treats of your own at home and as a family.  Learning how to create your own delicious pizzas, get creative with pasta dishes – adding new herbs and seasonings – and cooking other delectable meals at a substantial cost savings as compared to going out can substantially reduce your dining budget and provide you with an extensive menu to carry with you into retirement.

Reducing the family vehicle fleet
Reducing the family fleet by just one vehicle could equate to substantial savings and help prepare you for retirement at the same time.  By reducing costs on things like a car payment, fuel, parking, insurance, maintenance, and repairs, savings in this area could equate to thousands dollars each year.  Not only this, but it can help you learn how to function with one less vehicle so that come retirement, it will be no great hardship to continue on this path should you desire to continue these savings.


The author is not a licensed financial professional.  This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute advice of any kind.  Any action taken by the reader due to the information provided in this article is solely at the reader’s discretion.

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