Image by Always at Home via Flickr Fort Lowell Neighborhood
Inexpensive living while still living in style is actually very easy. It just takes a while to figure it out. So here are some basic tips:
NEVER PAY FULL PRICE FOR GOLF.
There are links that you can connect to for discount golf in almost every resort area in the nation. Here in Tucson golfnow, and EZLinks INC. are the services my husband uses. You will find tee times afternoon are very reasonable but later in the season the very early tee time and the later afternoon tee time become more and more appealing.
We also buy a Wild Cat Trail Card that is good for some very good courses and will give you a free round for your birthday at places like Tucson National. I suggest you check that out if you are spending a season from Oct. to May. The card it not good during high season. If you birthday is during that time you can use it with a month of the date.
If you spend the whole season and can produce a bill from your RV Park for example you can get a residents card that gives you a discount on golf. Joining a men/women's club is a good thing because it will allow you to participate in local tournaments that have very good rates and wonderful prizes. My husband belongs at Fred Enke Golf Course and renews his resident’s card every year.
EAT AT THE BEST FOR LESS
I don't like sleazy, dark, dirty or shabby and will not go to a place just because you can get Mexican or steaks for less! It is just not any fun and it might make you sick! We do a couple of things to keep it under control and still eat at some very upscale place. Some of the best places in town have great happy hour (Urban Spoon) specials. For example, a place called Luna Bella on the corner of Fort Lowell and Swan has a beautiful outdoor patio and their happy hour is the best we have ever had. We also use Restaurant.com occasionally. This coupon service will make some restaurants affordable. I do, however, recommend that you check people’s comments online before you purchase. Some restaurants that are failing use this service to 'sucker' people in...at least that is what I think. NEVER FORGET THAT UPSCALE RESTAURANTS OFFER LUNCH FOR LESS WITH A WONDERFUL MENU!
JOIN A FRATERNAL ORGANIZATION
Believe it or not you fraternal organization have some wonderful benefits. The Elks Club for example offers great good at very reasonable prices. The club in Green Valley is absolutely gorgeous and has great bands playing in the lounge almost every weekend. The camaraderie and opportunities to volunteer may be just the medicine you need to keep you emotionally well. My husband reactivated his membership this last year and it has been a wonderful experience for us.
RV RESORT LIVING...
Even though the rental of a park model can be expensive living in an RV resort can help with the budget and still give you a beautiful place to spend your winters. Actually, you would never need to leave the park accept to get groceries. Activities, beautiful pool, and lots of neighbors to visit will fill your days. We will have our block party this Monday. I have organized a Western BBQ and we will all gather around BBQ's to eat sing and visit. It is loud and lots of fun!
Area potlucks (Northwestern States for example), dances, dance lessons, poker, card games of every kind, a pool hall, exercise room and a coffee room are just a few of the activities. You could be busy every minute of every day.
And there are little jobs that pay...if you are interested in working just a little bit. Get in contact with your resort office and see if there is anything for you to do. You may have to wait a while but something will turn up. Gate guards, custodial work, the mailroom and even the office may be able to use your talents. I suggest that you establish yourself as a volunteer and go from there.
If you want to earn extra money using your talents you can do that too. There is always the need for a carpenter, electrician, painters, etc. You could even set up a little business on the side helping a few people shop or meet doctors appointments. Once you have built a trust in the community you can offer your services. We have an Avon lady, a Sentsy representative; cake-decorating service, a guy that surfaces the roofs and the list goes on. Just be creative!
LIVING IN STYLE
Retirees live on a budget too...not because we are poor or even living on a limited income. We do it out of habit. There are those among us that even...gasp...wait until we have the money saved before we buy things. I am not sure whether it is what happens when we actually grow up or if most of us have always lived this way. These are just some of the example of how we manage to leave our REAL homes in the north and go south for six month at a time. It is, in fact, very doable!!