Make things easier for them
A good way to start the conversation is to talk about your own daily management issues, such as:
- Staying on top of a budget—Do your parents have a budget in place? If not, you can help them get a clearer idea of where their money is going and determine if their income will continue to be enough to meet their daily needs.
- Paying bills on time—If they're having trouble keeping up with due dates and bill paying, maybe you can help them establish automatic payments from their bank account. That's a convenience at any age.
- Handling credit—Ideally at this time in life, your parents should be practically debt-free. If they're juggling credit card balances on a fixed income, you can discuss how they can consolidate to make it easier to pay off their debts.
- Basic banking—Getting to and from the bank and handling deposits and transfers may become a burden. Help them take advantage of direct deposit for things like Social Security payments, IRA distributions or other regular sources of income.
our two centsSenior citizens are increasingly being targeted by scam artists trying to con them out of their life savings. Remind your parents never to give out financial information or personal details such as their birth date or Social Security number over the phone. For more tips on protecting seniors against fraud, go to Federal Bureau of Investigation Fraud Target: Senior Citizens.