There’s nothing wrong with being frugal. In fact, it’s an admirable quality that is common among Baby Boomers. However, there can come a point where frugality becomes so severe that it keeps you from enjoying your life. When that’s the case, it may be time to revisit your budget and priorities. With that in mind, here are some tips for the Baby Boomers out there who want to strike a good balance between saving and spending.
Look Into Long-Term Care Insurance
It’s easier to live it up when you know you’re taken care of, and most people end up needing some level of long-term care in their golden years. Since Medicare doesn’t cover many of the costs associated with assisted living or nursing home care, long-term care insurance is one of the best purchases you can make for peace of mind. In a way, taking that step will enable you to live your life to the fullest.
Spend on Experiences
Living a full life doesn’t mean squandering all your hard-earned money away on useless pleasures — it simply means doing things that fulfill you and bring you happiness. For many people, this means spending their money on experiences rather than material things. For instance, instead of going on a shopping spree at the mall, perhaps saving that money and putting it towards a weekend getaway will bring you more happiness. Or, maybe you would find fulfillment in taking a class (art, music, sewing, etc.) or seeing a play at the local theater.
Hit the Road
One way to have a great experience while also saving money is to travel. However, rather than spending your money on a flight or cruise tickets, consider driving to your destination. There are numerous benefits to going on a road trip, a few of which are:
You save money when you’re with a group (even considering factors like wear and tear and gas).
You can arrange your car to pack pretty much anything you want.
You decide when to depart, arrive, and explore.
You have more flexibility to leave a boring location or to stay longer at a place that intrigues you.
You can better engage in local activities and take your time with historic sites, natural wonders, and so on.
You can pack your own snacks instead of relying on that mediocre airplane food!
Another great way to spend your money and time is to volunteer for an organization you believe in. Not only does volunteering give you a chance to help other people and better your community, but it also comes with many personal benefits. For one, it connects you with people in the community, giving you the opportunity to meet new friends and improve your social skills. Also, it comes with physical and mental health benefits. Volunteering can go a long way in reducing stress, anxiety, and depression; it can add purpose to your life; it’s a fun way to add physical activity to your routine; and it can add vitality to your life.
Some ways of spending your money are more beneficial and fulfilling than others. Add peace of mind by purchasing long-term care insurance, which will give you a platform to live it up in many different ways. Consider buying experiences rather than materials, and try going on a road trip instead of throwing down cash for a plane or cruise ticket. Finally, start volunteering in your community to reap the countless benefits that come with helping and connecting with others.
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Jim is a retired banker with almost 30 years of experience. He created MoneywithJim.org to share his advice and other resources on a variety of financial topics.