How to Budget While Aging in Place
Aging in place is typically less expensive than nursing or retirement homes, but it is still important to make wise financial choices. Here, the experts at Avila Home Care share tips on how to budget while aging in place.
Create an Income You Can Live On
One of the most important steps in creating a budget for aging in place is to sit down with a financial advisor to ensure that the daily expenses of retirement can be covered by your income. In doing so, make sure that you have taken stock of your savings, investments, reverse mortgages, long-term care annuities, IRA’s and other funds with which you will be retiring. This will help to provide the advisor with the most realistic picture of your financial position. You should also speak with this professional about how larger expense such as in-home caregivers, home repairs and remodeling, transportation services, and medical bills will affect your income and accounts. Depending on your financial position, it may be advisable to defer your social security (SS) payments until you most need them, which can mean a larger SS income per month when you begin to receive them.
Remodel Your Home on a Budget
Depending on your physical capabilities, you may need to remodel your home to create an environment better suited to aging in place. Remodels can be expensive, so take the time to research your options carefully, but do not cut corners on what can be a vital part of comfortably aging at home. There are also small, inexpensive ways to make your home more aging-friendly. De-cluttering, removing slick floor mats, installing guard rails, and wearing non-slip shoes can all help prevent falls and slips, a major concern for the elderly, without costing a fortune.
Make Use of Community Services and Resources
There are often programs in your city or town catered to elderly people aging in place. Public transportation often has a reduced senior fare, which may eliminate the need for a car and keep transportation costs low. Churches and senior centers may hold community dinners and potlucks, reducing grocery costs and giving you a chance to meet other seniors in your area. Local yard and home maintenance services may offer reduced prices for seniors. Inquire about what resources are available to you at your local community center, senior center or church. Your local Area Agency on Aging, or town and state offices of aging will also provide information on federal and state resources available to you.
Ask for Help
We all need a helping hand at some point, and this is doubly true as we age. Reach out to friends, family, and neighbors to help with the day-to-day minutiae of aging in place. Need help with yard work? Perhaps the neighbor’s son can help. Need a ride to the grocery store? Call up a friend or relative. Want to know more about computers and smartphones, which can help keep you organized and in touch your community? Enlist a grandchild to bring you up to speed. There is no shame in asking for help, and it can be a great and inexpensive way to make aging in place a more comfortable and social experience.
With a little time, thought and ingenuity, budgeting for aging in place does not need to be an overwhelming task. For more tips on aging in place, contact the experts at Avila Home Care today!
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