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Top 10 Financial Issues Older Adults Should Consider

Planning for major events in our lives and sharing those plans with our loved ones is important. But sometimes people hesitate to discuss financial issues with family members until a crisis occurs.

Money often is at the center of many decisions in later life, such as on housing, health and long-term care.

 Here are 10 questions to help you start talking with family members:

  1. Do you have a will? If so, where is it?
  2. Do you have an advanced directive, such as a living will or health care durable power of attorney, and where is it?
  3. Who has your power of attorney or is the executor of your estate, and how can he/she be contacted?
  4. Have you selected a funeral home and planned or paid fora burial site?
  5. What is the location of essential personal papers (birth and marriage certificates, dissolution of marriage documents, Social Security and military service records)?
  6. Where do you keep life, health, property and long-term care insurance policies?
  7. Where is your checkbook, and what bank do you use?
  8. Do you have a safe deposit box? Where is it, and where is the key? Do you have a list of contents?
  9. Have you made a list of investments (savings accounts, certificates of deposit, stocks and bonds, etc.)? What are the names and contact information of the financial advisers/institutions that have the investments?
  10. Have you made a list of the personal and real property you own? Where is it?

Source: Jane Strommen, NDSU Extension gerontology specialist, 701-231-5948

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