Senior finances

Three Ways to Benefit from Low Interest Rates

Three Ways to Benefit from Low Interest Rates

Even if you’re not in the market for a new primary home, you can still cash in on the historically low interest rates we’re experiencing. Start with an online calculator (here’s one: https://www.bankrate.com/calculators/mortgages/refinance-calculator.aspx) to see whether it makes sense to refinance or take money out of your home. Here are three possible uses for your home equity. Buy a vacation or investment property. If you’ve been longing to be a snowbird or become a landlord, find the down payment for a purchase. Make your home age-friendly. Invest in some of the higher-ticket aging-in

Estate Planning, Financial Considerations for Multigenerational Households

Estate planning, Financial Considerations for Multigenerational Households

When you’re creating a multigenerational household, you focus so much on finding the right neighborhood and home and determining the renovations that will make aging in place safe for your loved ones. What often gets overlooked are financial and estate planning considerations. After all, just divvying up routine expenses like groceries, dinners out, home repairs, insurance, and utilities can be challenging and may entail uncomfortable conversations. A column by Ilyce Glink https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2021/07/12/family-living-multigenerational-household-seeks-advice-about-finances

Where’s My Second Stimulus Check?

Where’s My Second Stimulus Check?

Remember the coronavirus relief package passed by Congress in late December? It included a second round of Economic Impact Payments. According to the IRS, eligible individuals will automatically receive an Economic Impact Payment of up to $600 for individuals or $1,200 for married couples and up to $600 for each qualifying child. The money started landing in people’s accounts on Dec. 29, 2020, and paper checks started mailing on the 30th. But if you’ve not yet received a direct deposit or a check, you have a couple of options. First, visit the IRS’s Get My Payment site (https://bit.ly/35RO4cf)

2021 Retirement Plan Contribution Limits

2021 Retirement Plan Contribution Limits

Now is the time of year when you’re taking a hard look at your financial picture and developing a plan for the year. Before you start, check the all-important Internal Revenue Service (IRS) contribution limits for 2021. For details, visit the IRS site at https://bit.ly/3mUplK4 and https://bit.ly/2JpWZK5. For individuals contributing to a 401(k), 403(b), most 457 plans, and the federal government's Thrift Savings Plan, the contribution limits stay at $19,500. For those over the age of 50, the catch-up contribution stays at $6,500. The maximum contribution limits for individual retirement

Avoid reverse mortgage shopping scams

Avoid reverse mortgage shopping scams

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected many Americans’ financial and retirement plans. If you’re a homeowner over age 62, you may be thinking about a reverse mortgage. A reverse mortgage is a loan that allows older homeowners to use the equity in their homes. Unlike a traditional mortgage, there is no monthly mortgage payment, and the loan is usually repaid when the borrower sells or no longer lives in the home. As a result of the economic uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, scammers may be targeting older homeowners through reverse mortgage schemes. These schemes can include: A trusted

When Does Your House Stop Being Your Home if You Have to Apply for Medicaid?  

When Does Your House Stop Being Your Home if You Have to Apply for Medicaid?  

Medicaid is a state and federal program which pays medical costs for low-income adults with or without children. Medicaid also covers people aged 65 and older, blind or disabled, or pregnant and cannot pay their medical bills. However, most people do not realize that Medicaid also pays for nursing home care as well. For seniors who require long-term care and meet the financial eligibility criteria, Medicaid has a program which covers long-term care and pays for almost 100% of their nursing home costs. To qualify for Medicaid, you must have under a certain amount of non-exempt assets. In 2020

10 Questions to Ask an Elder Law Attorney

10 Questions to Ask an Elder Law Attorney

Elder law attorneys cover a wide variety of legal areas, potentially including guardianship, long-term care planning, knowledge of government benefit programs, powers of attorney, estate planning, advance medical directives, elder abuse issues, tax law, retirement and pensions, asset protection, trust planning, and contract law. The American Bar Association has approved the National Elder Law Foundation as the only certifying organization for Elder Law Attorneys in the U.S. At this time, there are just over 500 Certified Elder Law Attorneys (CELAs) nationwide. Other attorneys also cover

Facilitate Life Planning with 3 Vital Steps

Facilitate Life Planning with 3 Vital Steps

Life planning, like so many other things, is often harder to begin than to finish. Society shies away from discussing death and its impact on others. As a result, many things are often left undone until it's too late. In some cases, this just makes it harder for the person tasked with finding and pulling together all the necessary information. In today’s digital age, this can mean assets are lost forever. Step 1. Start the Conversation You can't finish what you never start. To get organized and select an approach that feels comfortable, review the downloadable guides and workbooks offered by

SECURE Act’s Implications for Inherited Retirement Accounts

SECURE Act’s Implications for Inherited Retirement Accounts

The SECURE Act (The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act of 2019,) a law aimed at improving people’s retirement security, was signed into law at the end of 2019 and has tax implications for those inheriting money from IRAs and 401k accounts. Before, those inheriting such funds could take distributions over their lifetime. But that timeframe has now been reduced to 10 years, meaning that if you’re inheriting an IRA or a 401(k) from someone who passed away on or after January 1, 2020, you’ll need to withdraw those assets within 10 years. They’re taxed as ordinary income and