Not many Americans have saved up enough money to live out the rest of their days on retirement.
If they’re fortunate enough, the average household has enough to get them through a few years before things start looking dire. Though hopefully living on a budget with fixed income, sometimes what you’ve saved up and your social security benefits just aren’t enough to make ends meet.
Before deciding to return to the 9 to 5 cycle, there are some things you can do to supplement your income during retirement.
1. Look to Government Programs
If you’re aged 62 and older, there are a lot of government programs for you.
Many of them free and easy to access, these state and federal programs can help you with everything from housing costs and utilities to health insurance and groceries.
Since your income is limited and you’re a senior, you can get approved for many programs that can reduce your out of pocket costs for things you need.
2. Downsize or Relocate
One of the biggest costs for any adult is housing. Accounting for more than 30% of your overall income, paying a mortgage as well as other housing-related expenses can be a bit much when your checks aren’t as big as they used to be.
If your home has some equity in it, but it’s bigger than what you need for retirement, you could consider selling it and relocating. There are actually areas in the US you can relocate to and afford to be an entrepreneur, and, of course, they have very limited budgets, too.
If your home isn’t paid for and won’t be anytime soon, you may want to consider downsizing. Moving to a senior community or an apartment can be a lot more affordable and also includes a few amenities like community centers, gyms, and lawn care services which saves you more money.
3. Rent Out Your Room or Your Home
If you have a lot of space in your house but don’t want to sell it just yet, you can always advertise for someone to move in with you. Renting out a room and shared space like the kitchen and bathroom to a college student, a single career-oriented person, or another senior can be a great way to put a few extra bucks in your pocket.
If you’re not keen on the idea of having to live with someone else in the home, but you could still use the cash, you could also become a full-fledged landlord and rent out your entire house. You can keep it as one unit or if allowable, turn it into two units and get double the money.
4. Start a Business or a Side Hustle
Have you ever had something you were passionate about, but life just wouldn’t let you explore it further? Well, now that the kids are adults and your daily work schedule is over, you can turn to those passions to make yourself some extra money during retirement by starting a business or a side hustle. Whether you were a manual laborer and want to lend your hands to a contractor, an accountant who would love to consult with other firms, or a painter who would love to sell their art to interested parties, it only takes a few simple steps to get set up and begin drawing in new business.
If you don’t want to start a full-scale business, a side hustle is also a good idea. You can search the classifieds like Craigslist for locals in need of a helping hand. Mow lawns, walk dogs, babysit, or help a family move and make some money on the side without dedicating as much as you’d have to if you run a business.
When the funds start to run short of your retirement budget, there are ways to bring the balance back up. You can find ways to save money during retirement such as cutting back on unnecessary spending, downsizing, or moving to an area with a lower cost of living. However, you should also look for opportunities to earn money during retirements like renting out a property, starting a business, or a side gig. Doing a combination of both will allow you to supplement your retirement income without having to return to the grind of 9 to 5.
Originally appeared in MoneyMiniBlog