Precious heirlooms or just stuff?

precious heirlooms
etsy.com

Three sets of flatware (we called it silverware when I was growing up). Each was service for eight in a wooden box. My daughter inherited these beautiful sets from her paternal grandmother and great-grandmother, but she doesn’t know what to do with them.  One set is silver the other two are sterling silver; one of those is a like new set.  She asked me what she should do with all of these heirlooms.  Should she keep them in the trunk she also inherited to pass on to her children or sell them?

The following article from Tom Verde might provide some answers to those of us wanting to pass on family heirlooms to our children…

Aging Parents With Lots of Stuff, and Children Who Don’t Want It

August 18, 2017, The New York Times

“Mothers and daughters talk about all kinds of things. But there is one conversation Susan Beauregard, 49, of Hampton, Conn., is reluctant to have with her 89-year-old mother, Anita Shear: What to do — eventually — with Mrs. Shear’s beloved set of Lenox china?

Ms. Beauregard said she never uses her own fine china, which she received as a wedding gift long ago. ‘I feel obligated to take my mom’s Lenox, but it’s just going to sit in the cupboard next to my stuff,’ she said.

The only heirlooms she wants from her mother, who lives about an hour away, in the home where Ms. Beauregard was raised, are a few pictures and her mother’s wedding band and engagement ring, which she plans to pass along to her son.

So, in a quandary familiar to many adults who must soon dispose of the beloved stuff their parents would love them to inherit, Ms. Beauregard has to break it to her mother that she does not intend to keep the Hitchcock dining room set or the buffet full of matching Lenox dinnerware, saucers and gravy boats.”

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Retirement income – do you have enough?

7 Places to Find Income Once You Retire

Try these sources of income in retirement to help cover expenses from health care to spoiling your grandchildren.

By Scott Hanson, CFP, for Kiplinger

July 2017

“Where are you going to find income once you retire? Even if you’ve got a trunk load of cash saved, you can’t just live off the principal. Because with interest rates stuck in low gear, just to keep up with inflation your money’s going to have to earn income.

And then there’s all those unexpected health care expenses, along with your grandchildren’s college educations.

What should you do?

retirement income
Getty Images

Here are seven places to find income once you stop working, with a tip added to each to help nudge your thinking toward the future.

  1. Retirement Savings Account
  2. Social Security
  3. A Diversified Investment Portfolio
  4. Reverse Mortgage
  5. Pension
  6. Work
  7. Inheritance

Read retirement income tips and other details

 

Have you received a financial wake-up call?

financial wake-up call
lifemeisters.com

Widows, divorcees face financial wake-up call when spouses are gone

By Erin Arvedlund, The Philadelphia Inquirer

July 21, 2017

“Widows and divorced women need to plan for retirement differently. That’s the advice from financial planners and studies by Allianz, Lincoln Financial Group, and the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College.

Women pay a higher economic price for divorce, separation, and widowhood compared with men. Older wives are doubly disadvantaged relative to their husbands because, among other factors, they’re less likely to recoup their losses from divorce by remarrying, according to a 2016 Center for Retirement Research study. Furthermore, men typically make more money than women, are more likely to have access to pensions, and are more likely to achieve financial security and live above the poverty line in later life compared with women, regardless of marital status.

About 65 percent of women save less than they need to, compared with 55 percent of men, according to the 2017 Lincoln Financial retirement survey, based on a national sampling of 2,509 full-time workers ages 21 to 70 who have been contributing to their current employers’ defined-contribution retirement plans for at least one year.

So what’s an aging American woman to do? First, seek out help, starting with a financial adviser, particularly one who is a fiduciary — the term means the adviser puts clients’ interests first, ahead of the paycheck.”

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Beware of SSA impersonators

SSA impersonatorsSocial Security Scam Targets Retirees

“The Acting Inspector General of Social Security, Gale Stallworth Stone, is warning citizens about a new Social Security Administration (SSA) employee impersonation scheme.
SSA and its Office of the Inspector General (OIG) have recently alerted citizens about an OIG employee impersonation scheme and a scheme targeting former clients of Kentucky disability attorney Eric Conn; the agencies are now receiving reports from citizens across the country about other phone calls from an individual posing as an SSA employee.  The caller attempts to acquire personally identifiable information from victims to then edit the victims’ direct deposit, address, and telephone information with SSA.”

 

Senior park pass price to increase on August 28, 2017

Do you enjoy visiting national parks like I do?  If you are 62 or over and don’t have a senior park pass yet, now is the time, even if you don’t know if you’ll use it any time soon.  The price is going up from $10 to $80 on August 28!  Too bad I’m not 62 yet!senior park pass

From the National Park Service Website:

Senior Pass

Retirement decisions

retirement decisions
thebalance.com

Getting the most out of your retirement dollars

by Larry Hungerford, Winston-Salem Journal

July 1, 2017

“Given that so many baby boomers are retiring as they age into their 60s, I thought that a column that provides some basic ‘money tips’ for them might be appropriate. Certainly, it is a huge adjustment to give up that regular paycheck to live off of Social Security, pensions and savings.

Of course, the best of all possible scenarios is to retire from a full-time job to work part time doing something enjoyable. It means you don’t need to deplete your savings as rapidly and you still have the opportunity to fund (up to $6,500 per year per person) your and your spouse’s Roth IRAs. (As of last April, 19 percent of Americans age 65 and over were still working, the highest rate since 1962.)

When I discuss the retirement decision with clients, there are always two key questions.

The obvious one is how much income will they have available to maintain their preferred lifestyle? The second question is: Do they still enjoy going to work every day?

If they are in their mid-60s and dislike their jobs, then I argue that we need to do everything possible to make the numbers work so they can retire. It may even mean taking Social Security early — giving up the yearly 8 percent raise (plus cost of living adjustments) as well as scaling back on planned expenditures after they retire. (The usual best strategy for Social Security is to draw on your spouse’s account while you permit yours to keep increasing until age 70.)

The amount of money retirees can withdraw from their savings and the way that is done to pay the lowest taxes possible are the two most crucial financial decisions they must make. Given how little safer investments pay (money markets, CD’s, government bonds, etc.), investing during retirement in the stock market is a must.”

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Contact Larry Hungerford, age 81, at 335-941-3164 or e-mail him at hhplanner@aol.com.

Are you going broke in retirement?

going broke
debtconsolidationusa.com

Three best ways to go broke in retirement

by Robert Laura, Forbes.com

June 28, 2017

“Nobody heads into retirement with aspirations of filing bankruptcy, becoming dependent on family and friends, or asking ‘why me.’  Unfortunately, some people end up in the poor house for a number of reasons.

One of the fastest ways to go broke in retirement is from medical bills.  I learned this several years ago when I was an approved bankruptcy counselor.  Basically, there was a requirement in my home state that anyone filing bankruptcy had to take a financial management course.

I set up my program with the expectation of being a light for young people who had made some bad financial decisions.  However, I was horrified when my primary audience turned out to be retirees who couldn’t afford their medical bills.  They were not only in bad physical shape, but no amount of financial counseling and budgeting would have or could have changed what happened to them.

In fact, A 2015 Harvard University study showed that medical expenses account for approximately 62% of personal bankruptcies in the US. To make matters worse, studies indicate that seniors are the fastest growing demographic in bankruptcy filings and a whopping 72% of those who filed due to medical expenses had some type of health insurance.

That makes it more important than ever for people approaching retirement to avoid putting off or delaying their plans to start eating better, establishing that exercise routine, and dropping a bad habit.”

Read about two more ways of going broke in retirement

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