Caring for a senior parent is a time-intensive labor of love. It may impact financial resources, as family caregivers may choose to take unpaid leave from work, reduce their hours, or stop working altogether.
It’s common for family caregivers to set aside their long-term financial plans in order to concentrate on a loved one’s needs. And, as many as one out of three family caregivers close to retirement are using their own savings to care for a loved one.
There are ways, however, to avoid compromising your retirement funds even when taking care of a family member.
How Can I Improve My Retirement Savings While Caring for a Loved One?
- Start with a spending plan. Work with a financial expert to create a plan that enables you to consistently put aside savings for retirement. It is important to make saving a high priority in your budget, even if you are unable to save the amount you did prior to taking on the role of caregiver. If you haven’t already, set up an IRA in order to take advantage of tax benefits. Find out if your employer offers a company match for retirement savings too.
- Consider alternative savings options. In the event that you decide not to work outside of the home, see if you qualify for a spousal IRA. You may want to explore an SEP (simplified employee pension) plan if you’re working on a freelance basis or running your own business.
- Whatever you do, do not wipe out your savings in order to manage a loved one’s care. Depending on the senior’s financial status, they could qualify for benefits programs like Medicaid or Supplemental Social Security. You might also have the option to claim the senior as a dependent to receive a break on your own taxes. Using your own savings should be absolutely the last resort.
While the immediate needs your family member is experiencing might seem to require your full attention, set aside time to make your own long-term planning a priority as well. Your financial advisor can help you create a retirement plan that includes consideration for future long-term care needs. A long-term care insurance plan, for example, can help with the cost of home care services whenever the need arises.
How Do Home Care Services Help Me Prepare for My Retirement?
Partnering with a home care provider, like Hearts at Home In-Home Care, a trusted provider of senior care in Kansas City, Lenexa, Leavenworth, and the surrounding areas, lets you achieve a comfortable balance between earning an income and caring for a loved one.
You can determine how much time to dedicate to working while knowing your aging parent is receiving excellent care, additional opportunities for fun outings and socialization, and much more.
Our fully trained and experienced caregivers are here to help as much as needed, whether just a few hours every week, 40 hours or more to allow you to work full-time, or even 24 hours a day, around the clock. Let us help both you and the person in your care set and achieve new goals. Call us at 913-440-4209 to learn more about how we can assist!