Make Ends Meet: Aging and Inflation

Some older Americans are coming out of retirement because they just cannot make ends meet.
Published: Jul. 15, 2022 at 6:27 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Some older Americans are coming out of retirement because they just cannot make ends meet.

Ongoing economic uncertainty and rising prices are enough to make almost anyone uncomfortable, especially those who depend on social security or live on a fixed income.

What does someone do when prices are continually rising, but their income is fixed and their savings are limited?

Sarah Ackerman, a benefits enrollment center coordinator for stressed there is help. All someone has to do is ask.

“This website finds lots of benefits they’re eligible for,” Sarah Ackerman said. “It can tell them how to apply. It’s a free service.”

The site is run by the National Council on Aging and connects millions of older adults and people with disabilities with benefits programs that can help pay for health care, medicine, food, utilities, transportation and more.

”Older adults miss out on saving simply because they don’t apply or don’t have access to different benefits that could serve them,” Ackerman said. “There are services and benefits that they can use to assist in boosting their budget and getting money back in their pocket.”

Inflation is at a more than 40-year high, creating new challenges for Americans 65 and up. Census data shows they are already more likely to live in poverty than younger Americans still in the workplace.

“People are having to make those tough decisions on whether to buy certain groceries they may need versus medications or pay bills,” Ackerman said.

AARP just released its annual money saving guide for seniors with 99 great ways to beat inflation.

A few of the clever ways to cut costs:

  • Use ground chicken instead of beef. Beef and veal prices rose the most of main food groups this year, at 16%.
  • Americans waste a lot of food. Designate an “eat me first” spot in the fridge for all the leftover food or overly ripe items that should be eaten immediately.
  • Bake in the toaster oven instead of a full-size oven when possible. It keeps homes cooler and could slash the energy cost of cooking that dish by more than half.

For older adults or someone with disabilities struggling with day-to-day bills, click or tap here. People can check to see what is available to them by simply entering their zip code.

For those that do not have internet available, call 1-800-928-9093.

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