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Many of us have been where you are right now and it’s not a fun place to be

We were there last summer and had to come up with some innovative ways to get to the point where we are current on everything. Your priorities need to be with catching up on the utilities and with the sleep apnea equipment.
My suggestions are to call the credit card companies and see if you can get some reduced payments for a short time.
Call the medical places and tell them you are having some financial hardships and can you spread the payments out more. A lot of the places will give you a discount if you are having troubles paying, but you will have to fill out lots of forms with all your income, expenses and debt.
Call whomever did the sleep test on your husband and let them know that he needs the CPAP but cannot afford it and it will take a long time to get together the money to pay. They may have some ideas. Sleep apnea is very serious if not treated but not a big deal if he has the CPAP. (I have sleep apnea and my insurance paid 100% of the equipment and for all replacement parts as they wear out.)
Is there a possibility of a part time job for one of you? That could help you get on top of the late bills and get the BEF funded and going. It won’t be a permanent thing but after 6 or 7 months, you should be in a lot better shape.

Retirement

In 1989 I left a teacher job at a private school and left my retirement account with them there. AT that time if you hadn’t been there for 5 years and took the funds out, you would lose their matching funds. I had only been there for 3 years so I left it.

However, time went on and I forgot about it until recently. I have not gotten a statement from them in many years, it is still in my maiden name and I’m not sure how to find out what has happened to the account.

What is the best way to track down that account and update it? Do you hear about gshloans.com – bad credit payday loans website? Or roll it over into an IRA? In 1989 there was about $3,000 in the account, but with time and interest I would imagine that it is closer to $25K now.

Well, I think Maurice would say pay the “four walls” first

Food, rent, utilities, transportation. Get those caught up first. Maybe you could sell the cars, get rid of the payments and buy two garage sale cars. I would (and do) require my teenage boys to work and pay their own cell phones, car insurance, gas, clothing, fast food, spending money, etc. Is that why the cell and insurance is going down in July? Will your grocery bill also go down?
So you have stuff you could sell on E-Bay?
Could one or both of you get part-time jobs to increase your income?
Are the driving lessons and the graduation party necessary?
Maybe not much help, just a few thoughts…

YES!!!!!

We changed our budget constantly in the first three months. Primarily, because we really had no clue what we spent on stuff. All we knew was there was never any money. It was in budgeting and keeping track of expenses, that we came up with a working budget. When you’ve never worked a budget that works, it takes a while to tweak it just right. My husband thought blow money was rediculous and refused to budget it. He was a bear!!!! Two weeks of no coffee with the guys and even he accepted that he needed blow money and was willing to budget it. When feeling disciplined and on fire about financial peace it’s easy to say no to yourself. It’s when life happens, that you see the real picture and are more capable of spending a budget accurately. Tweaking it is so necessary!

Budget Question

I was so proud of myself a couple weeks ago when I sat down to write my budget and did really well. Things came up, though, and now my budget is already off…should I write a new budget based on where we are right now?

If both are having memory problems

and you are already getting a poa that will allow you to pay without being on the cc accounts. I have handled the accounts for various family members and that is what we did.

You might want to be appointed representative payee on their social security as well. That way you can protect them from accdentally signing it away. Like at the nursing home. If Mom has already simply take her to ss office tell them what is going on and they will help you fix it.

I paid all bills online or had the bank send payments. I was also designated as the one to call if there was the problem.

I wouldn’t worry about adding anyone to the credit cards

Just get an online account with username and password for each or get the statements mailed to your house.
My mom has alzheimers and my dad takes care of all the finances. I’m on power of attorney and my name is on the bank account. I have all the account numbers, names, and passwords in case something happens to him.
If something happened to my Dad, I’d pay off his credit card and get a debit card to pay for any incidentals my mom would need. Since she doesn’t need a credit card in the nursing home, it wouldn’t matter.
Taking care of their finances while they are both alive doesn’t mean you have to have your name on it. Just think of this as a bookkeeping job. You pay their bills, open the mail and keep things organized.
You are a very good daughter!

Does anyone have experience of helping their elderly parents with their finances?

Not talking about the horror stories. My parents are in their late 80’s and my brother and I are starting to shift things to help them manage their home and finances. Their finances are good. My parents have credit cards (2 or 3), but are the rare exception and they do not carry a balance. They dutifully pay it off each month. They own their home. They have savings and investments. Thankfully they have not gone the route of buying things on Home Shopping Network, etc.

The problem is they are showing poor judgement in other areas. Tip of the iceberg . . . My mother gets confused easily and has shown a propensity for signing on the dotted line without understanding what she’s signing. And my father was just diagnosed with dementia. He’s currently in a nursing home. Not sure if he’ll be moving back into the house. (Regarding my mom . . . she just told me she signed ‘some papers’ at the nursing home, but has no clue what they said, and didn’t get a copy of them. Don’t worry. I’m on it and will be at the nursing home today.)

Anyway, we are trying to have our names added to their various and sundry accounts, as well as getting the power of attorney (medical and legal). I’m doing my homework. So I feel informed on that score.

Here’s my question. I no longer have credit cards and don’t want any. BUT as we add our names to these accounts, I don’t want to be added to their credit card account. I think it would freak out my parents to suggest they close the account. They fear the debit card. So that whole argument won’t work (use debit or check card and not credit card). There’s no debt there, but I just don’t want my name on a credit card. Should I just add my brother’s (who is not in FPU)?

Can anyone speak to helping elderly parents and how you’ve helped? I’m not asking about the horror stories. Happily that’s not the case here, and we’re trying to make sure that doesn’t happen.

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