Wearable Medical Alert Systems

Helping Seniors Stay Independent

If you have an aging loved one who is still living on their own, there’s a good chance you’ve thought about a wearable medical alert system. Remember that awful commercial “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!”? There are so many services out there it’s hard to figure out what’s the best and most cost-effective solution. As a daily money manager who’s worked with both seniors and busy families, I’ve learned some tips that can help you navigate this important decision.

Communal Retirement Living… No Love Beads Required

Communal Retirement Living

For many of us, communal living conjures up images of the sixties… complete with fringed jackets and love beads. With memories of the economic meltdown during The Great Recession (2007 to 2012), many of us wonder if we’ll have the financial cushion needed to retire comfortably. Some of my clients are exploring their housing options as they age. Communal retirement living may just be the answer to that financial question.

Your Parents’ Estate: Sorting, Sifting, Shedding Stuff

A Lifetime of Memories & Accumulation

As a follow-up to my Estate Planning: Fairness & Entitlemania article, I wanted to touch upon what happens to our parent’s earthly belongings once they pass. This topic hits particularly close to home since I lost my father last year. The process of going through a loved one’s stuff is hard. Beyond the emotions of sorting through a lifetime’s worth of memories, there’s the reality of how to dispose of the “stuff.” Here’s what I learned in my journey.

Advice When Managing a Parent’s Finances

If you’re part of the sandwich generation — where you’re caring for children and aging parents — life can get pretty hectic. Especially if you’re managing your parent’s finances. Over the years we’ve seen what methods work best and what spells disaster.

When the Parent-Child Relationship Changes

The following is a guest post from a friend who is living what many of my clients’ families undergo every day. Helping our aging loved ones can be challenging. I hope the advice offered from this real story is of comfort and assistance.

Financial Scams Against Seniors

Wallet and Money, Financial Scams Against SeniorsAccording to a recent study, 37% of seniors have experienced financial abuse. On average those seniors lose $36,000! And the actual number of victims and dollars stolen are most likely much higher. Why? Because seniors are reluctant to admit to and are less likely to report fraud to the authorities.

My Recent Interview with AARP

Senior-citizen-dedicated-lineLast month AARP published an article about managing daily finances on a budget. I was honored to be interviewed and quoted in the article, providing my perspective both as a board member of American Association of Daily Money Managers (AADMM) and as a working daily money manager. Here are my thoughts on the article, the important points they made, and a few they missed.

Parent Personal Financial Management: Changing Perspectives

Vintage Portrait of ChildrenWhether your parents are growing old gracefully or not, most likely your parent-child relationship is changing. In helping my senior clients with personal financial management, I witness all kinds of familial relationships. Sometimes they are loving and supportive. Others are fiery and confrontational. Sometimes they are courteous yet distant. Regardless of where your relationship fits on the continuum, I invite you to look at your elderly loved one with a different perspective.

Aging Parents’ Home for the Holidays

Feeding the DogSome of my clients are returning from visiting their aging parents over the Thanksgiving holiday. For some, it was an annual trek out of state. The holidays can be a wonderful time of year. Yet for some families it can be a wake-up call. If a senior is struggling with their independence, it may come to light during a family visit.

Love and Money: Mixing Romance & Your Money

When you get married, you typically talk through things about personal values, career goals, raising kids, and your overall financial dreams. Things can get sticky if you have different attitudes or habits in managing your money. Living together and/or marriage is a romantic relationship (hopefully) but it’s also a financial partnership. Being faithful applies to many areas of your life together. In addition to the obvious, there’s running a household, paying bills, and saving for short- and long-term goals.

Your Money Attitude. It’s amazing what we learn as children about money, and it affects how we manage and respect it throughout our adulthood. For many of us, money is a scorecard; it’s tied to our self-worth, social standing and feeling of security. Are you compelled to spend every dollar in your wallet? Do you feel reluctant to spend money or have to find the best deal even if it means driving across town? A critical aspect of love and money is knowing your attitude, as well as that of your partner, is an important first step.

Working Together. Often one person in the relationship manages the bills. I suggest that couples talk about their expectations and who will take responsibility for specific money-related chores. Maybe one person is more comfortable with online bill pay and downloading updates into Quicken, but it’s important that both parties are kept up-to-date and involved in decision making. A good friend of mine abdicated control of his finances to his wife, and she hid her shopping addiction. Fast forward several years to a nasty divorce, he’s now responsible for half of the $70,000 of the credit debt she accumulated before leaving the relationship. Talking about finances during weekly meetings help keeps everyone in the loop and on track. Limit these discussions to 30 minutes so they are short, sweet and on topic.

Financial Therapy. If you can’t find middle ground, maybe you need financial therapy. As a daily money manager, I know many of the psychological triggers related to managing money. Avoidance typically compounds the problem, and outright confrontation can damage the relationship. Find ways to communicate clearly and respectfully. If you can’t, seek outside help.

Want help in talking with your sweetie about love and money? Then schedule a free 30-minute consultation with Fiscally Fit, Inc. Email me at Alison@fiscallyfit.us or call (650) 965-4090 for a no-cost, no-obligation appointment.