Ways to Save Money #1

One of my biggest problems with retirement planning is that it’s done backwards. The traditional method goes something like this…”Mrs. Smith, you have $400,000 in your portfolio, thus you can withdraw $16,000 a year and not worry about running out of money. Isn’t that great!

To which Ms. Smith says “but, I need $50,000 a year.”

The advisor then responds by suggesting other ways they could get to a closer amount of withdrawals from the portfolio.

All the while, it turns out Ms. Smith has significant waste in spending that, if she were to focus on, would reduce her income needs to $40,000 a year!

Remember this folks, it’s the SPENDING that should drive your retirement planning. Not the income your portfolio can produce. The income you need is of utmost importance. So, we have to define what that is…and then find ways to reduce it.

In this podcast, I discuss 3 easy ways to reduce your spending.
1. Change to LED light bulbs
2. Insulate your house
3. reduce insurance cost

Here are some LED candelabra lights from Amazon you should consider to replace your incandescent bulbs with.

Get your home insulated. Around the windows, doorways. Go into your attic where the light fixtures are. Have some heavy insulation sprayed into your crawlspaces and attic.
Remember, cold air chases warm air. So, in the summer when your air conditioning is on, the cool air in your home is trying, desperately, to escape to the outside where it’s warmer.

In the winter, when you’re heating your home, the cool air is trying desperately to come inside. The cool air wants to be warm too!

So, creating barriers that makes it harder for the cool to mingle with the warm is what we want t accomplish.

Lastly, if you have life insurance, when was the last time you actually checked your cost?
Can you reduce your expenses? Well, I did when I dropped weight and greatly reduced my triglycerides. I read Gary Taubes book and that changed everything.

Here is my article on why you need to understand your life insurance.


Hope this podcast helps.  Comments are always welcome.

Song of the day:
Black Sabbath  – Into The Void


I’m a financial planner. That’s pretty much all I know how to do. So, keeping track of my cash flow is near and dear to my heart. I don’t like losing or wasting my hard earned money. Thus I don’t gamble.  However, three weeks ago, I changed the air filter in my attic A/C unit and forgot to turn the light off. My wife gently mentioned this to me yesterday when she turned it off for me.

As a financial planner, leaving a light on sickens me because it is money down the drain. A 60 watt bulb on for 3 weeks equals 30.2 kWh of energy consumed. At say $.09 cents a kWh that equals $2.72 of lost resources.

You might say, “Scandlen, what’s the big deal that’s just a couple bucks!” However, that’s MY money and simply due to my laziness I am out that amount, which I don’t like.

But, let’s also look at this. I used to leave my outside lights on at night. Each Candelabra bulb is 60 watts. I have 6 light fixtures each has 4 bulbs in them. So, I have 24 bulbs at 60 watts each on for 8 hours a day. That runs me 11.52kWh a day, or 345 kWh a monthly billing cycle. 345 x $.09 = $31 a month in cost.

Now we’re starting to talk REAL money lost from doing nothing more than leaving lights on. Because I like my money, no I actually NEED my money, I decided to do something different.

Now I turn off my lights when I am not using them. I also replaced lights with  LEDs in case I do want outside lighting at night. Finally, I bought some solar lights that turn on when something goes by the sensor. (I am amazed at how many squirrels light up the sensor as they climb up my back porch to get at my veggies!). Obviously, there’s an upfront cost to purchasing the latter so you have to take that into consideration in your cash flow.  But for me, the one time hit to outflow was more than worth it as, like I said earlier, I don’t like wasting my hard earned money.

Happy financial planning!

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