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6 Reasons for Poverty in Aging Adults

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No one wants to have difficulty with finances in their senior years, but poverty among the elderly has become a national epidemic. Many seniors rely on social security as their only form of income, which means a single unexpected event could result in overwhelming debt. Seniors who spend some time planning ahead can reduce their risk of a financial catastrophe taking place while they are living on a fixed income. Here are a few reasons seniors may face financial distress.

1. Medical Expenses

Medical expenses are among the top causes of bankruptcy across almost all demographics, including adults over the age of 65. Even with proper insurance coverage, certain diseases and injuries can exhaust a senior’s entire nest egg. This is why many seniors expand their coverage to include expenses such as palliative care.

With the help of professional caregivers, seniors can mitigate some of the challenges that come with aging. Bloomfield Hills home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.

2. Losing a Partner

After living with multiple sources of income for many years, it can be difficult to adjust to a single income. The surviving spouse will receive whichever social security payment was the highest, but he or she also needs to have a plan for downsizing. Moving in with family or renting a single room is more practical than staying in a bigger house. Married seniors should be ready to downsize their lives to prevent financial problems in the future. 

3. Rising Living Expenses

Seniors are now living longer than ever, which can strain their finances as living expenses continue to rise. After being retired for 15 or 20 years, living expenses might increase by as much as 50 percent depending on the local market and national economy. Moving to a town with a large senior population can reduce the risk of fluctuating monthly expenses. Those who try to stay in rapidly growing cities might have to handle huge increases in their property taxes, utility bills, and home insurance premiums. 

4. Being Too Generous

Some people take advantage of aging friends and relatives. These individuals might ask for small business loans or a little bit of extra money to pay rent, which can stretch a senior’s budget to its limit. Caregivers should keep a close eye on their senior loved ones’ finances so their generosity doesn’t hurt them in the future.

Helping a senior loved one plan his or her finances or manage other daily tasks can be a challenging task. Families who find it difficult to care for their aging loved ones without assistance can benefit greatly from professional respite care. Bloomfield Township, MI, family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties can turn to Home Care Assistance. Using our proprietary Balanced Care Method, our respite caregivers can encourage your loved one to eat well, exercise regularly, get plenty of mental and social stimulation, and focus on other lifestyle factors that promote longevity.  

5. Pensions Run Dry

Just like any other retirement account, a pension can run dry if the money isn’t managed properly. While pension funds tend to be stable, a single mistake could end up costing retirees millions of dollars. Instead of relying on a single source of income, seniors should try to make sure they have multiple accounts they can draw from at all times. 

6. Identity Theft and Other Financial Scams

Seniors often have a significant amount of money in their accounts, which makes them the perfect target for identity theft. Being careless with their personal information could end up costing them thousands of dollars before they realize a mistake has been made. As a general rule, seniors should consult with a trusted family member or caregiver before giving away their personal information or making large payments.

Performing daily tasks while simultaneously managing the symptoms of a serious illness can be challenging for seniors. The West Bloomfield Township live-in home care experts at Home Care Assistance are available 24/7 to make sure your loved one has the care he or she needs to remain safe and comfortable while aging in place. If your aging loved one needs assistance at home, call one of our friendly Care Managers at 248.283.0835.