17 Things People Should Stop Buying When They Retire

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By Jonathan Trent

Retirement is a time for wise financial decisions; as older individuals detach from the working world, it isn’t a good idea to make unnecessary purchases or buy clutter. To help you budget, here are 17 things people should stop buying when they retire.

Overly Expensive Cars

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It may be tempting, but spending money on luxury sports cars isn’t a good idea in retirement. These cars tend to lose their value quickly and are also associated with costly maintenance, excessive fuel consumption, and pricey insurance, all of which can detract from your retirement savings.

Designer Clothing and Accessories

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There’s no need for those who have reached retirement age to buy expensive brand-name clothing, as they will no longer be required to dress to impress so often. These trendy fashion items have short lifespans, and their value tends to go down over time, so unless you really like a piece, save your money!

Costly Subscriptions and Memberships

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Life can get lonely when you retire, which is why many retirees purchase premium streaming services to keep themself busy. However, as Business Insider notes, a fifth of Americans 50 and up have no retirement savings, so if that sounds like you, it’s better not to go overboard with purchasing unnecessary subscriptions.

Large Family Homes

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Large family homes aren’t necessarily suitable for retirees as they require a lot of maintenance. When you are retired, it’s best to take time off to enjoy these years instead of having to grapple with higher utility bills and property taxes. As these properties are bigger, retirees may even feel more lonely!

Excessive Gadgets and Electronics

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Extravagant gadgets aren’t as attractive in retirement as they are costly, meaning that they can take a toll on your savings. It’s also no longer necessary for retirees to keep up with the latest tech trends unless they have a passion for tech! As the saying goes, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

Expensive Dining and Fine Wines

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While it can be tempting for retirees to consider fine dining at upscale restaurants, this may be foolish in the long run. Splashing out on rare or premium wines at these establishments, as well as expensive gourmet food items, can undo all your hard work by draining your bank account!

Expensive Travel Packages

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Reaching retirement age means taking time to relax, unwind, and enjoy the pleasures of life without stress. For this reason, many retired individuals spend all their money on luxury cruises or first-class flights. While this may be fun in the short term, it could be financially destructive; budget options are more sustainable.

Trendy Home Decor and Furniture

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When retired individuals withdraw from work, they may start transforming their homes by purchasing trendy furniture pieces or home decor items from upscale boutiques. However, sprucing a living space up during retirement can be done on a budget without breaking the bank, so consider your options.

High-Maintenance Pets

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As the BBC highlights, retirement means being with your partner all day, or alone all day, without the traditional structures of work. As a result, retirees may turn to purchasing exotic pets to keep them company. However, what they often don’t realize is these pets may require expensive specialized care, so be careful! 

Expensive Hobbies

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Participating in activities such as walking and spending time with family is incredibly gratifying for retired individuals. Instead of engaging in expensive hobbies like golfing or sailing, they can unwind by doing low-cost activities that don’t strain their fixed income. We’d recommend the former option unless you’re loaded.

Fine Jewelry and Watches

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It’s nice for retired people to treat themselves occasionally, but purchasing high-end diamond jewelry and luxury watches from renowned brands can be detrimental financially. It’s still possible for these individuals to treat themselves on a budget or even by purchasing second-hand items, but pricey products are not the way to fulfillment.

Costly Health and Wellness Products

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According to Forbes, older consumers are more likely to strive toward self-improvement. This may lead to buying high-priced supplements and vitamins, luxury skincare products, and expensive gym memberships or equipment. However, most of these products are essentially ‘snake oil,’ and they’ll all cause you financial stress in the long run.

Premium Beauty Treatments

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Nowadays, an array of expensive salon hair treatments lures retired individuals. These treatments, along with luxury spa services and high-priced cosmetic procedures, may seem appealing to older people, but they can quickly detract from their prized retirement savings pot. So, we’d recommend thinking twice or at least saving this for an annual treat.

Brand-Name Groceries and Gourmet Foods

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Individuals who are accustomed to purchasing cheaper items in the grocery store may suddenly find the urge to splurge on expensive organic products and specialty gourmet food items as they age. However, these products are very similar to other grocery items and do not live up to the hype; they’re a rip-off!

High-End Tech Upgrades

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The latest laptops, smart home devices, gaming consoles, and accessories are popular with the older generation despite being unnecessary. The Guardian reveals that the over-70s spend more time online than any generation besides Gen Z, but ask yourself this: do you really want to spend your twilight years staring at screens?!

Costly Financial Services

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Retirement is a time to be savvy with money, which is why many older people turn to high-fee investment management services and expensive banking services and accounts. However, this can be risky, so it’s better to stick to focusing on your retirement fund. If you’re determined to invest, at least seek financial advice first.

Luxury Leisure Activities

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Finally, it’s tempting to spend a lot on luxury leisure activities upon retirement, but make sure you think this through carefully. Extravagant activities may not bring as much enjoyment as you expect, and simpler, more meaningful experiences will likely be more fulfilling. You should certainly treat yourself, but is that extravagant helicopter ride really necessary?!