How does World Kindness Day relate to finances? We’ve covered the topic of helping elderly parents with finances before, but we figured we could tackle a few more questions on the topic so that you can show some world-class kindness to the parents that supported you through your formative years.
So without further adieu, here are a few more burning questions to answer about helping your parents with their golden years finances.
How can I protect my elderly parents’ money?
One of the easiest and most simple ways to protect your aging parents and their finances is to educate them on potential scams. In the digital era, this is much more possible than ever before. You might be capable of spotting these scams immediately because they seem too good to be true, but you are not the target audience when it comes to these scams. According to aplaceformom.com, “Fraudsters scam more than a million American seniors each year, costing them approximately $2.6 billion annually.”
If you are in your 40s to early 60s, your parents likely spent their strong financial years in an age when the door for invention and new money schemes was wide open. That theme still exists in scams today, where the “plan” proposed online or even in person seems like a simple and solid path to additional income.
To help your parents steer clear of this, frequently share scam stories and fake emails with them, so they can begin to recognize the patterns scammers use to trick their victims.
Is there financial assistance for seniors?
Social security is still in rapid decline, but that doesn’t mean it will be completely gone by the time the majority of millennials reach the age where they will need it. This means that your parents will still be able to utilize it in the coming years.
However, in addition to social security, there are other government programs that can help. In Housing, the section 504 Home Repair Program provides a grant of up to $7,500 to senior homeowners to repair damages that are deemed hazardous to safety and health. This can be a huge help to prevent your parents from having to cover this out of pocket when they have strict weekly and monthly spending habits with their social security stipends.
Debt.org covers the healthcare conundrum by detailing the medicare program: “Medicare is the primary healthcare subsidy for seniors and it comes in three parts:
Part A, which covers hospital stays, is free if you have paid Social Security for at least 10 years.
Part B covers outpatient services, like doctor visits and rehabilitation. The premium for part B is $135 a month, with a deductible of $185 a year. After meeting the deductible you’ll usually pay 20% of the Medicare-approved amount for most outpatient services.
(Part C usually isn’t applicable for most people)
Part D covers the costs of your prescriptions. The monthly premium for Medicare Part D in 2019 is $33.19.”
How do you take control of elderly finances?
So…this will not be an easy process. As we are sure you have encountered, the paperwork trail for applying for a loan, which covers things like a mortgage, buying a car, and covering payday issues, is massive.
When it comes to taking over finances from your elderly parents, the process looks similar. Bankrate wrote up an excellent blog covering this, with a list of the steps clearly outlined. Here is an excerpt:
- Find all financial accounts and documents.
- Collect and start paying bills.
- Locate power of attorney or living trust.
- Open your parents’ safe-deposit box.
- Become your parents’ guardian.
- Document everything you do.
- Consider hiring a financial planning team.
- Consider updating investments.
To complete Steps 1 and 2, you will basically need to start thinking of yourself as a financial detective. Your parents are most likely still keeping their finances on paper, preferring to receive paper bills in the same way they have done for decades. This means you will need to start putting the documents in order from oldest to newest to establish a payment history, but you will find most account numbers in the process, which is helpful.
Step 3 is part of the structure for controlling the estate of your parents after they have passed, or as they prepare to pass and have made the decision to sign over authority to you. EstatePlanning.com can walk you through this process and what you need to do to understand how this transfer works.
If you found our blog looking for financial advice or assistance with credit card debt relief or debt consolidation, call Golden Financial Services today at (866)-376-9846 or firstname.lastname@example.org. You can check out the rest of our blog here, and do your research on our services here. Let’s talk soon!