The Financial Perks of Being a Senior

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Growing older often comes with an increased cost of living[i]. New health issues might prompt costly prescriptions and treatments, but aging also has plenty of monetary benefits to offer! There are certain benefits to growing older, including age-specific deals. These discounts and programs are typically geared toward seniors above the age of 65, but some begin when you turn 50. 

A fixed income or senior budget may at times be difficult to navigate, but your senior status also comes with many financial benefits. Getting older can actually save you money[ii] in some cases. The benefits don’t stop at coupons and discounts. Seniors qualify for tax deductions and other financial boosts, too.

Alert1 Medical Alert Systems also values seniors and provides budget-friendly solutions. Personal safety and maintaining one’s independence shouldn’t come at a prohibitive cost. We offer medical alert systems to seniors at affordable prices and with flexible payment options. 

Senior-Specific Savings Opportunities

Ready to save some money? We’ve compiled a list of several money-saving opportunities for seniors, including municipal senior services, tax deductions, senior discounts, investment discounts, travel discounts, more affordable health insurance, free college, and more. Keep in mind that this is a non-exhaustive list, and many companies and organizations will have some sort of price-adjustment for seniors. Don’t be afraid to ask!

Municipal Senior Services

Some communities offer reduced cost van or taxi services for seniors. These services are typically used to get groceries or go to doctor's appointments. In lieu of van and taxi services, some communities offer discounted or free public transportation if you meet the municipal age requirement.

Additional senior services may include reduced-price community classes or entertainment. Some communities might organize senior meet-and-greets or other activities for seniors to socialize and connect. Community-sponsored affordable meal programs are another perk of being a senior. 

Contact your local municipal government regarding possible discount rates for seniors. These discounts are based on either age or financial need. For example, Georgia Power offers seniors up to an $18 discount on their metered service based on some income qualifications. The City of Chicago allows homeowners over the age of 65 to opt out of sewer service charges if the homeowner applies for the discount.  

Tax Deductions

Once you reach the age of 65, you become eligible for a host of tax deductions. Seniors enjoy larger standard deductions then taxpayers under the age of 65. Each spouse who is over the age of 65 receives a standard deduction of $1,300. If both members of a married couple are over the age of 65, then the standard deduction is $2,600. In 2020, seniors could raise their standard deduction by $1,650. 

Eldercare Locator

The Administration on Aging offers a free national service called the Eldercare Locator. This tool is offered to seniors and their loved ones. Using the Eldercare Locator, seniors in any U.S. community are connected to resources in their area. The goal of this resource connection is for seniors to be able to live independently within their communities. This resource is also for seniors’ loved ones because it provides potential support for the caregivers in seniors’ lives.

AARP

AARP is an American non-profit organization that offers hundreds of programs, services, and discounts for senior citizens. Joining AARP can provide you access to several financial benefits. One of the best parts about AARP is that its age requirement is much lower than many of the other groups that offer senior benefits and discounts. You only have to be 50 or older to be eligible for a full membership with AARP. Seniors can get a membership, with all of its related discounts and services, for as low as $12 per year with auto-renewal. 

Senior Discounts for Retail and Entertainment

Retail companies and restaurants will often provide senior discounts. If you are looking to spend a day out on the town, movie theaters, museums, and other fun places will likely offer reduced admission costs for seniors.

Some stores even offer senior discounts on essentials like clothing and groceries. Keep in mind that not all stores and companies are open about their senior discount policies. You might have to request a senior discount or provide an ID to show that you meet their age requirement.

Your AARP membership may entitle you to retail and entertainment discounts. Dave Austin, the former vice president of marketing services at AARP, says, “There's a lot of money to be saved if you are willing to ask.” A small request could translate into big savings.

No Early Withdrawal Penalty

After you turn 59½, you no longer have a 10% penalty to withdraw money from your IRA. If you stay at your job until you are 55 years old or later, you can take penalty-free 401(k) withdrawals from the account linked to a job that you left at an earlier age. However, you must wait until you turn 59½ to circumvent an early withdrawal penalty on distributions from 401(k)s that are linked to prior jobs.

You are not penalized for withdrawing money if you are 55 or older and you get terminated from your job. You will still pay tax on the withdrawal, but the 10% penalty will no longer apply to your situation.

Travel Discounts

Your AARP membership might come in handy on your next vacation. Some rental car companies or hotels will provide an AARP member discount. You will not always need an AARP membership to receive senior discounts on your travels. Amtrak offers riders 65 and older a 10% off discount. Greyhound offers riders 62 and older a 5% discount. Travelers who are over the age of 62 can purchase a National Park Service lifetime senior pass for $80 in person. This pass is available online or through the mail for $90. A National Park Service lifetime senior pass grants you access to over 2,000 federal recreation sites.

More Affordable Health Insurance

Seniors do not need to job hunt to find health care coverage. You can avoid many high out-of-pocket costs for health insurance plans after the age of 65 because you are eligible to sign up for Medicare at that age.

Many seniors pay nothing for Part A hospital insurance. Medicare Part B’s premium is $144.60 per month (as of 2020), a fee that is deducted from your social security check. Part B covers medical services and doctor visits. It is possible that some beneficiaries will pay more than $144.60 for their monthly premium. 

You have the option to buy a supplemental plan to meet some co-payments and deductibles. A supplemental plan might also cover prescription medications under Medicare Part D. 

Free College (sometimes)

The high cost of college in the U.S. puts many young students in debt. As a senior citizen, you could enjoy a unique educational and financial advantage. Seniors are often able to take college courses at a reduced cost, or even for free in some cases. Public colleges and private institutions sometimes offer tuition waivers to seniors. Not every college or university offers senior discounts. If there is space available in a course, some schools will allow seniors to audit classes for free or at a reduced cost. There are also Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes on over 100 college campuses. These Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes sponsor affordable classes for seniors.

Social Security Payments

Once you turn 62, you can sign up for reduced Social Security payments. At your full retirement age, usually 66 or 67 depending on when you were born, you are able to claim the full amount you have earned. You can choose to delay your payment claims past that full retirement age of 66 or 67 until the age of 70. If you delay payment claims, you earn delayed retirement credits that will increase your monthly benefit.

Essentially, the longer you wait to claim your payments, the higher your monthly benefits will be. These payments continue for as long as you live. They are adjusted for inflation every year.  

Alert1 Offers High Value, Budget-Friendly Medical Alert Systems for Seniors

The best part about all of these discounts, deals, and deductions is that you simply have to grow older to claim them. Some of these savings can help make it an easier and more enjoyable transition. 

Alert1 caters to the financially savvy senior. Our medical alert systems offer an invaluable sense of safety for affordable prices. If you compare Alert1 to competitors, you’ll see that Alert1’s prices are some of the best in the industry.

Our monthly plans offer financial flexibility. If you choose our 10-month plan, we’ll give you an 11th month for free. We also have plans that allow members to pay month to month for those who prefer a monthly option. We also never lock members into contracts or charge for “false alarms” or multiple button-pushes. Alert1 is a great option for older adults who live with an eye toward finance. 

An Affordable Medical Alert System Keeps You Safe

Alert1 medical alert systems are customizable for your unique senior experience. If you are ready to get out on the town and take advantage of some of the money-saving opportunities in this article, consider using an Alert1 On-the-Go medical alert system. The In-Home medical alert system is perfect for seniors who plan on keeping their activities largely within the home or who have adequate support when they leave the home. 

Our cost-friendly medical alert systems come with the option of fall detection technology. The Alert1 emergency Command Center is staffed 24/7 with agents who are highly trained. We take your safety seriously. If you press the button after a fall, or fall detection technology senses a fall and sends an alert, a member of our emergency response team will stay on the line with you until help arrives.  

Seniors Can Save Money Without Sacrificing Safety and Comfort

Aging is not without its financial stressors, but there are several discount opportunities for seniors. Many stores and restaurants will give you an age-related discount. You might even receive free or reduced-cost municipal services based on where you live. Seniors receive tax deductions, avoid early withdrawal penalties, and qualify for Social Security payments. There are senior-specific financial discounts available to help you manage your money. 

Services like Eldercare Locator and organizations like AARP connect seniors with money-saving resources in their communities. Alert1 is dedicated to seniors and their safety and well-being. Our medical alert systems keep seniors safe without breaking the bank. 

 

 

 

[1] Craft, Matthew. (2015, April 9). Growing old is getting more expensive. BusinessInsider.com. Growing old is getting more expensive.
[2] Hoyt, Jeff, Stanley, Maureen. (2021, July 30). Senior Discounts and Savings. SeniorLiving.org. Senior Discounts and Savings.