Financial Help for Seniors:
4 Effective Ways
In the ’90s, roughly half of all Americans expected to retire before the age of 65. That number has taken a dive since then with only 23% expecting to retire at or before 65. With the disappearance of traditional pension plans, shrinking 401ks, and rising medical costs, seniors are faced with less financial security.
What does this mean for the growing population of people approaching retirement age? Senior citizens are now looking into ways to earn extra income or stretch their dollar to live comfortably and plan for the unexpected.
So, what are some of your options if you’re looking to stretch your dollars into retirement or plan for the unexpected as you age?
Here are some great ways to plan for your financial needs:
1) Finding Assistance Programs
There are local and national assistance programs that can help with employment, medical care and even food.
- BenefitsCheckUp®: You can check out the National Council on Aging’s BenefitsCheckUp® to find local and federal programs that will help you with medical, tax relief, food assistance, transportation and number of other services.
- Benefits.Gov: Another option to find benefits in your local area is Benefits.Gov. Their site allows you to browse for benefits available in your state and determine what you’re eligible for.[/t]
2) Delaying retirement
This option is not possible for everyone, but here are a few benefits of delaying retirement to consider:
- Increasing Savings: Delaying retirement allows you to continue working to save up. Or simply stretch whatever savings you already have. With the average life expectancy increasing over the last few decades, many retirees are outliving their retirement savings. It’s important consider this when considering the appropriate age to retire.
- Better Social Security benefits: Postponing retirement to a later age can also help with Social Security payments. According to the Social Security Administration, delaying retirement can increase your benefit payments. The graph below displays the benefit payment based on the age retirement starts.
3) Putting Your Skills To Work (Or Finding New Ones)
With early retirement becoming less common, consider returning to work in some capacity. Traditional job sourcing for senior citizens can be found through your local or national organizations. These organizations can help with identifying ones most marketable skills, acquisition of new skills, and even with job placement.
- JobSource: Provided by the National Council on Aging, this resource offers a job sourcing tool that can help with locating and even training for jobs in your local area.
4) Crowdfunding: Using your network
Reaching out to close family and friends is a great way to get help in an emergency. Asking for help from the people in your network may be a great help if you’re facing unexpected medical expenses.
- GoFundMe offers a great way to get support for any unexpected medical expenses, living expenses, or other costs. Consider creating a GoFundMe campaign and sharing that with your network. It takes only a few minutes to create, and a GoFundMe campaign can provide substantial help through our proprietary technology. You can even ask a friend or a relative to do it for you.
You’ll find great campaigns like this one: Wood Man’s Widower fund. When Kenneth’s wife passed away after a long battle with cancer, he was left with not only medical bills but a very limited income. His daughter decided to help him by starting a GoFundMe campaign. Then, she rallied family, friends, and the broader community to help him.
Or, check out Norma’s story. When Norma saw her health declining, her wonderful neighbor stepped in and started a GoFundMe campaign to help her pay for 24-hour home care. With the funds raised from the campaign, she was able to pay for mounting health bills and living expenses.
Click here to find more fundraising campaigns for Seniors.
You can also use sites like GoFundMe to save your home or help with your living costs, such as household bills. Many GoFundMe users have started campaigns to help with their own living expenses or to help with the care of an elderly relative.
Take the example of Hank and Helen, an elderly couple who lost their home due to the unfortunate actions of a close relative. When their neighbor found out about their situation, they started a GoFundMe campaign to help the couple find a new home and pay for living expenses.
Whether funds are needed for medical costs, living expenses, or simply for your retirement, acting sooner rather later allows you to get a head start on your securing your finances, but also provides a cushion in case there are any unexpected developments. Take the next steps now to get financial help and contact your local benefits office, re-start your career, or leverage your network.
Start a GoFundMe Campaign Today
At GoFundMe, our community of donors and campaign organizers have raised over $4 billion for a variety of causes. We’ve seen seniors and their network raise funds to help with living expenses, medical treatments, retirement, and even long-term care expenses. Setting up a campaign is easy and only takes a few minutes. You can start your own campaign–or ask a friend or relative to start one for you. Click here to start a campaign now.