Retired - do you watch every penny

DH and I have always been careful with our money. We have had hard times in the past so had no choice.

DH retired 10 years ago and mines coming up 7 end of March. We have got savings not vast amounts but enough to get us out of trouble if something breaks down or needs renewing.

We do caravanning quite a lot in the good weather and generally go abroad once a year for a holiday. Somehow we managed to maintain the savings at the same level more or less and to honest I don't how we've managed it but am if course thankful this is the case.

I realise we are in a very fortunate position and it's not the same for everyone . Old habits die hard so we don't throw money away, however at 71 and 75 I feel if I want it, I buy it.


  • Farway
    Farway Posts: 12,998
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    I realise we are in a very fortunate position and it's not the same for everyone . Old habits die hard so we don't throw money away, however at 71 and 75 I feel if I want it, I buy it.

    Good for you, I'm very similar position regarding age & financially, and like you I don't chuck money about, old habits, remembering 15% mortgage rates etc, but will buy what I want and feel I can afford

    There may come a time when our lives change, maybe due unforeseen circumstances, like health and then regretting something not done in order to stockpile money

    Once rainy day money is secure that is
    Eight out of ten owners who expressed a preference said their cats preferred other peoples gardens
  • pollypenny
    pollypenny Posts: 29,389
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    edited 12 April 2020 at 3:21PM
    We are amazed at how comfortable we are after the years of struggling with high interest rates on mortgage and kids in university with no grant.

    There also seems to be far more offers around than in the 80s. We had to spend a fortune on paper, paint, carpets etc when we moved into this very run down property. A loyalty card and discounts would have helped.

    Where there ever offers on meals out then? I can't recall any, but I have emailed offers every week.
    Member #14 of SKI-ers club

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  • robinwilliams
    robinwilliams Posts: 1
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    edited 18 February 2020 at 9:29AM
    Many people who delay their retirement planning are usually caught off guard when reaching their retirement age. Instead of enjoying their golden years in peace, they find themselves struggling to meet expenses with reduced earnings. In my opinion, everyone should avoid any kind of retirement planning mistakes, to enjoy retirement in later years.

    Usually, people underestimate the need for retirement planning. They fail to set up savings early, or don’t save an adequate amount, or lack the financial knowledge of making smart investment choices. However, It’s crucial to take charge of your retirement plan and consider making savvy decisions to reap the benefits in your golden years.
  • MoneySeeker1
    MoneySeeker1 Posts: 1,229
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    edited 18 February 2020 at 1:54PM
    I live very modestly anyway (no car/children/grandchildren/pets/can't recall when my last holiday was - other than it was before retirement, etc). So, with that, I'm not going to scrimp on food, heating or social life at my age and take the view "If I can't have it now, then just when? (given my age)". This and the fact I had to spend the first couple of years of retirement on job pension only (thanks to a revised State Pension Age) means that, now I have all my pension belatedly, then I won't scrimp on those 3 things and have what I decide I will. It means I have very little savings and that is more than counterbalanced by debts (which are slowly going month by month with automatic payments). I had to take out a loan for the new kitchen the house needed and did so, rather than wait years to scrape together the money for it - but, at my age, I'm very aware of the fact I won't have that many years of "use" of anything I get and have to think differently to the way I did when younger, in order to try and get my "moneys worth" out of any money I spend on possessions/work on the house. Don't like the fact £25 approx is literally going down the drain on interest charges on that loan each month and will repay it at some point before it's due to finish anyway hopefully.

    Fortunately, all my pension is secure (including against inflation) and one of the blessings of retirement is the money just keeps automatically coming into the bank account and there is no risk of an employer going "redundant or sacked and you're about to be unemployed for a while" at me and my income can't be touched basically.

  • badmemory
    badmemory Posts: 7,509
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    Watching every penny is a very hard habit to get out of.  I resent paying more for something than I need to, but get lots of steps in going round various supermarkets.  I was left what can only be described as gobsmacked when going shopping with a friend who happily paid £1 for ginger biscuits when I had been getting them for 25p.

    I don't have a lot of income but do have plenty of savings, certainly enough for things like the roof blowing off & enough to say when I bought my last car (I buy new but keep for about 12 years) heated seats oh yes.  Best things about retirement, being able to say MY WAY or the highway, just hanging up the phone when you CBA, sorry I can't hear you.  But not hearing you are about to be made redundant at 60ish has got to be top of the list.  Who knew you had to be pushing 70 to get real financial independence?  Although I do worry about those not able to own their own property, it would be bad enough at any age to not know how soon you are going to be forced to move but to be in your 70s or 80s & find your landlord needed you out - terrifying even life threatening.
  • MoneySeeker1
    MoneySeeker1 Posts: 1,229
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    edited 20 February 2020 at 12:20PM
    I do indeed think things would be rather different if I'd never had the chance (finally!) to buy a house. The mere thought of even trying to retire at my retirement age (ie 60) knowing that my revised State Pension Age wasnt until some years later!!!! That would have meant, in the event, that I'd have been made redundant a few months into 60 and then being officially unemployed/looking for a job for the next couple of years, but in actual fact I would have been retired in my own mind. It would have been even worse to be "officially speaking unemployed/hunting for work" when I knew I was actually really retired than it was to be "genuinely unemployed and genuinely looking for work" during the spells of unemployment I had whilst working age. 

    As I did own a house, then I was able to have official retirement and actual retirement match, as I was struggling to manage on half pension, but not having to try and claim benefit from still having rent to pay (as I would have otherwise).

    EDIT: Though...I'm with your friend on the £1 biscuits LOL and guessing you'd be horrified I was checking out bars of chocolate costing between £2-£3 today and the only reason I didnt buy one is because I'm on a diet at the moment.

  • Absolutely not!  I ensured by deferring and working extra years after pension age that I would be comfortably offand not have to worry about spending.  
    The con was that maybe would have been more inclined to travel if younger.  

  • gwync
    gwync Posts: 3
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    edited 26 February 2020 at 4:24PM
    Our situation is very similar to the above comments, we deferred retirement and invested some extra earnings into pensions to avoid paying too much income tax.  We are in our late 70's, have been retired for +/-10 years now and for the first few years we went on some nice overseas holidays, but travel insurance companies increase the premiums for even minor complaints so we are planning to go abroad only once this year and take advantage of more holidays in the UK.  ISAs were one of the best investments and are there for rainy days if required.
  • Pennylane
    Pennylane Posts: 2,707
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    My OH does all the financial stuff as I am useless at it.  We both now get the state pension but OH still works full time (self employed).  I consider myself a good housekeeper though and can make a meal from almost nothing.  Most of our meals I cook from scratch and we don’t waste anything.  I have never been a penny pincher and if I want something now I buy it which I wasn’t able to when we had a young family.  Neither of us smokes and we seldom drink alcohol.  We used to have just a week abroad but last year I managed to persuade OH to have two holidays and hopefully this will be a permanent thing now.  We eat out quite often.  

    We both took out private pensions years ago but they were losing money so we cashed them in before they disappeared altogether.  Our pension pot is now in bricks and mortar. We bought a second (small) house about 10 years which we rent out.  We have what we want, when we want and we don’t owe anybody a penny.  My philosophy is that you never know what’s round the corner so have what you like and don’t stress about saving because I have seen too many people having to sell their homes to pay for their care whereas people who have very little get it mostly paid for. 
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