One of the challenges many of my clients are facing as they age is how to handle their finances, both in the short term and the long term. For instance, my clients are dealing with questions like: As I enter retirement, how much do I need to save? If I lose my vision, how will my bills be paid? Who will assist me so I can stay in my home? These are difficult questions that are best addressed early, why you are still able to make these decisions. By looking at these challenges earlier, rather than later, you can maintain the maximum amount of independence for as long as possible.
One of the best ways to address these challenges is to build your team early. You team of trusted professionals, friends, and family members who will be there to carry out your wishes and plan. By working with your team early, you ensure that they understand what you want and how to carry it out. Additionally, the longer you work with a group of people, the better information they have to assist you and your family as you face the transitions of aging.
Think of your team as a table top: four legs with a flat surface. Having four legs keeps the top balanced and stable, allowing you to live abundantly. The four legs are your financial planner, accountant, lawyer, and insurance representatives. They can assist you in managing budgets, investments, and other assets to ensure that you achieve your short term and long term goals. Your and your family are the table top. When supported well by your team of advisors, you and your family can rest assured that your plan is balanced and provides stability moving forward.
The reason for this is because you get to select your team. You have the ability to pick who are going to be your professional advisors, build a relationship with them now, and connect them to your family and loved ones for the future. By building your team early, you can work with your advisors to create a plan for your needs and dreams, and then put the pieces in place to ensure the plan is carried out in the future. This will give you control now and into the future, maximizing your independence and helping you live abundantly.
The next few weeks, I’ll be offering ideas on how your team can work together to provide for your abundant living and rich legacies. I hope you will see how a well balanced team, created by you, and working with you early, can be one of the best tools you have to anticipate, plan for, and navigate some of the common challenges we all have as we age.
Cassandra Jones is an elder law and family law attorney in Gardnerville. She can be reached at 782-0040.