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Are you Ready to be a Caregiver?

Did you know that by 2060, there will be 92 million people aged 65 and older? According to the AARP, some 30 million households currently care for an adult over the age of 50, and that number is expected to double in the next 25 years.

Are you prepared to be a caregiver? Do you have a Caregiving Plan for your parents or your mom or dad or favorite aunt or uncle? Here are some ways to get started:

  • Meet with, Facetime or talk to other family members first to solicit their help and include them in the plan.

  • Create a list of topics you would like to cover as part of the Caregiving Plan for your relative(s), such as medical needs, power of attorney, monthly finances, investments and final arrangements. Come up with questions under each category you will need answered, like, “What is your monthly income between Social Security, retirement plans and other sources of income?” “Is your will up to date? Does it include a living will, medical power of attorney and beneficiary designations?”

  • Get everyone together in some way (in person, online or some combination of both) to meet with the relative(s) you want to create the Caregiving Plan for and start covering the topics you chose together as a group.

Be sure to really listen to your relative to learn their wishes. Do not make the decisions for them. Try to approach the Caregiving Plan conversation as gently as possible—Remember, it’s a hard conversation for all involved. There’s a lot to cover, so it might take several discussions before you have all your questions answered.

You can also have your family member write a Love Letter with their wishes to get started. Be sure to share our Peace of Mind Checklist with them as well. It is a great tool for organizing the most important documents in their life, such as birth certificates, Social Security cards, marriage license, investment documents and statements, bank statements, wills and estate planning documents, computer passwords, etc. This way if something happens unexpectedly, you have these important documents in one place and can access them easily. By knowing ahead of time what they want, you can carry out their wishes. Check out the “Prepare to Care” Planning Guide for more information, or give us a call!

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