No matter how old you are or how young your parents might currently feel, there is no such thing as planning for the future too soon. In fact, the sooner you start your preparations, the better, especially in terms of ensuring that you have enough financial stability to provide them with the care and support they will need when your aging parents enter their silver years.
More often than not, age comes with a slew of health issues, whether they are as mild as restricted movement, or more severe, such as dementia. Either way, the following tips should help you establish a financial plan for both, your and their future, so that you can have a peace of mind when the time comes to find the ideal care provider and enough medical support to see them through their old age.
Meet their needs
Since your parents are the one in question, it makes sense that you will need to have a serious sit-down with them and discuss all the possible options. Putting this conversation off indefinitely will only lead to emotional stress when the time to take care of their needs finally arrives. To that end, have an open chat with them and pencil down what they would like to see happen in the years to come.
Your parents might already have a contingency plan you have not been aware of, or a savings account dedicated to their senior years. However, if their faculties diminish and you need to take over, you should be able to know their preferred senior lifestyle. Would they like to stay at home and have someone take care of their health on a regular basis? Or would they prefer to move to a different facility with other people of their age? Would they enjoy specific activities, social events, or a particular region to live in? All of these questions need to be answered before you can start making financial plans for their future.
Look into specialized services
Moreover, it is crucial for families in which parents might suffer from a medical condition or any form of dementia, to acknowledge that the rest of the family might not be qualified or capable of providing suitable care when their health deteriorates. Those parents will need continuous monitoring that will ensure they are getting the medicine and therapy they need, as well as ample emotional and physical support.
Luckily for you and your family, there are programs that provide aged care for the elderly in homes designed for such situations. Here, your parents will not only get the medical support they need, but they’ll also have access to a variety of activities, entertainment and social activities every day. In addition to caring for their health, these homes make sure your aging parents lead fulfilling lives in every possible way, without hindering their independence (as much as their health allows it).
Consider financial aid
Depending on your country, as well as your parents’ lifestyle, there are numerous programs and groups that are dedicated to helping certain people with their retirement and their quality of life. Your aging parents may be eligible for some form of aid, such as aid for veterans, or you as their caregiver could apply for financial help with your own tasks in various states.
Another option that requires early planning is insurance, especially long-term care insurance which you can opt for when your parents are still healthy and independent. By the time your aging parents require any form of help, the insurance will kick in and provide them with enough financial support to meet their needs.
Craft your personal plan
Once your parents face the need for a high level of care, it will be close to impossible to improvise a financial scheme in which both you and your aging parents will be covered with only your own income and budget. Based on your initial conversation, you should have an insight into their retirement funds as well as their intention on how to use them.
Based on your parents’ needs and desired lifestyle in later years, you can do the math and see how many of those needs their own funds can cover. Considering how pricey elderly care can be in most areas of the world, chances are that you will need to step in to a great extent. You can start your own savings account on the side, dedicated to this purpose, or look into some form of life insurance that will meet the needs of your aging parents.