Worrying isn’t always a bad thing. If your concerns can encourage you to take action, this anxiety can be a positive motivator. However, most of the time, stressing out will do you little good. Rather than stay awake at night dwelling on financial fears, make plans to solve problems proactively. Many seniors tend to worry about the following ten concerns, but these issues need not be as frightening as people think. While we address popular concerns below, a financial advisor can do a great job addressing your individual concerns.
1. Will Your Savings Last? – Nobody knows what the future will hold. While it is natural for most people to worry about their retirement savings, it isn’t healthy to become obsessed. Do some calculations, establish a budget, find where you can cut down on the excess, and give yourself room to breathe. If you do find yourself in dire straits, investigate all of your options thoroughly.
2. Should You Pay Off the Mortgage? – If an existing mortgage is weighing you down and keeping you from handling other bills, it may be time to take action. Paying off your mortgage will give you the security of knowing that your home is in your full control, but doing so isn’t always easy. If you hope to pay off your mortgage sooner rather than later, a reverse mortgage may be a viable solution. By getting a reverse mortgage, you can eliminate your monthly mortgage entirely. However, you will still be responsible for paying taxes, insurance, and home maintenance costs.
3. Can You Afford a Kid’s or Grandkid’s Tuition? – As the costs of college rise to extraordinary heights, many parents and grandparents struggle to help the younger generation. However, your kids and grandkids will have plenty of time to save up and find scholarships before going to college. For your own sake, take care of yourself first. Prioritize your own health and peace of mind.
4. Could You Lose Your Home? – If you’re struggling under a hefty mortgage and your retirement savings are drying up, you may want to consider selling your home and downsizing to something more affordable. However, if you would prefer to stay in your home, you may be able to do so with a reverse mortgage. Not only would you be able to eliminate an existing mortgage, but you would also remain the owner of your home. However, you will still be responsible for paying taxes and insurance and maintaining the home.
5. When Should You Take Social Security? – Although many seniors would love to draw on their Social Security as soon as possible, delaying these benefits may allow for even greater future savings.
6. Will Social Security Last? – While political climates shift and the federal debt continues to skyrocket, many people worry about the long-term survival of Social Security. Will Social Security be around long enough for you to take advantage of it? Chances are, it will. Either way, since there is very little that an individual can do to change the course of such a massive government program, it’s best not to worry about it. Instead, focus on taking advantage of Social Security when it will benefit you the most.
7. Can You Afford Healthcare? – As the quality of healthcare continues to improve, many seniors are enjoying longer retirements than their ancestors. However, healthcare and prescription drug prices also tend to rise over time. To prepare for medical issues, shop for insurance as early as possible and take advantage of as many government programs as possible – such as Medicaid.
8. How Much Should You Invest? – The answer to this question varies for every individual. How much can you devote to investments? What percentage of your total savings do you feel comfortable with investing? Which stocks should you pursue and why? If you aren’t sure where to start or don’t know how to answer some of these questions, we recommend discussing your situation with a financial advisor.
9. Will the Market Crash? – Investing could be a way to still allow you to access several opportunities for growth that you can’t take advantage of through other means. However, nobody can tell for sure what the stock market is going to do in a few years. But there are professionals who have an idea of where the stock is going and what is the best way to invest. That is why we recommend consulting a financial advisor.
10. Leaving Your Legacy – Providing for your loved ones isn’t only a matter of leaving as much money as possible in your estate. While money can help, it can’t buy happiness. For family and friends, good memories and strong relationships often mean more than money ever could.