Mike is 85 years old and has always handled his family’s money and bills. Unfortunately, Mike recently had a stroke, is in the hospital and incapable of paying the bills. His wife, Sarah, has never handled their money so doesn’t even know where to start.
Maria is 90 and has lived alone for the past 15 years. She missed paying a few bills in recent months and is now receiving late notices. Her daughter was visiting and noticed the pile of late notices scattered among the bills. She also looked at Maria’s checkbook and found several errors.
The situations above are not uncommon. Although many of us think we can handle our personal finances throughout our lives without issue, unfortunately this is not typically the case. As we’ve reported previously, “financial literacy begins to decline after age 60; however, confidence in financial literacy remains constant over time,” according to a 2015 (revised) study by Finke, Howe and Hutson.
What’s more, recurring financial mistakes are one of the first indicators of dementia, noted an article from The New York Times. Financial mistakes can lead to many problems like bounced checks, extra bank charges and even scams, bankruptcy and identity theft.
Help with Money Management
So how can you prevent your loved ones from making harmful financial errors?
Sometimes all it takes is money management help from a trusted family member or a friend. That person might be all you need to keep an objective eye on your loved one’s finances. This requires regularly examining the checkbook to make sure it’s balanced correctly as well as the bills to ensure everything is paid for in a timely manner.
But sometimes family lives too far away or friends may not be available to help reliably. When that occurs, Life Managers & Associates (LMA) client managers can step in to help with money management to keep your loved ones living at home independently.
As a member of the American Association of Daily Money Managers, LMA client managers can help with:
- Paying bills, reconciling bank and investment accounts and organizing payment schedules
- Preparing and making bank deposits
- Managing mail, organizing paperwork, like tax documents, and other administrative tasks
- Referring to legal, tax and investment professionals and to community resources
- Preparing and managing a budget
Not only will one of our client managers get finances in order but these home visits can be at any interval you choose: Once a week or once or twice a month.
Having another set of eyes on your family member’s financial matters can also alert you to anything else he or she might need help with in the home like housekeeping, home organization, home safety or repair issues.
Life Managers & Associates manages the details of life with the same care as a loving family member to enable clients to live independently. We help them feel safe and supported — saving money and alleviating stress for all.