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Preparing for senility, no kids??

Started by chinook9, March 11, 2019, 04:00:36 PM

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I am in my seventies and my wife is in her late sixties. I am starting to plan for the time when my wife and I may no longer be able to manage our own investments, pay our taxes and utility bills, or much else.

We do not have children and none of our loved ones has experience managing money.  Also, we do not live near any of our siblings.

We have substantial Traditional and Roth IRA investments but we live off our pensions.  I am a buy and hold investor and am not particularly concerned about maximizing my returns.

I would like recommendations on the financial services we are likely to need as we age.



This is a GREAT post! I'm a financial counselor and see this situation frequently but not in the manner you lay out. What I see, is the other side of this situation. Those who did nothing to prepare. When folks hit their senior years and have no one, they are called Elder Orphans and there are indeed people who work as conservators, who can help manage the finances. And it's an honor to fulfill such a role.

I encourage everyone to please, please have a talk with your senior loved ones. Getting a General durable power of attorney is easy when they are able to walk down that hall with the attorney and speak of their own volition, 'Yes, I trust so and so and Yes, I want them to make decisions for me." From what I understand, once dementia has set in (and 50% of >85 yr old will be diagnosed with some form of dementia according to latests reports) getting a POA isn't that easy.

So what you are doing is great and perfect and admirable. Look around you, my friend. Do you have a young and honorable relative or friend? It's easy to put utilities on auto-pay and same for credit cards but it's important to have someone savvy and street-smart to look over your credit card bills to look for any insane continuity charges (I found $275 per month on my parents'! - college classes, self-improve stuff, $75 magazines)

Look around and see if you find someone who loves you and has shown financial responsibility and speak to them about being a POA for you when the time is right. It's an honor to do this for someone.


Leigh's advice is spot on.  You might also consider consulting with an attorney in your area who deals with elder care and estate planning issues -- they can tell you what you need to have in place to protect yourselves in the event of cognitive or physical decline.
All the best,


Great advice from Leigh. Contact an estate planning lawyer who can give you recommendations as well.