As your parents start getting older, it becomes imperative to start having those important conversations regarding their finances and healthcare. Here are some tips to help you get started and issues you should cover while having financial conversations with your parents.
TIME AND PLACE
These conversations are not fun and may even be uncomfortable, but it is so important to have them while your parents are still able. Start with small suggestions and be patient. Once it’s decided the conversation needs to happen, set aside a specific time and pick a comfortable location. Don’t bring it up casually during a family dinner or other event. Include all siblings that need to be a part of discussion and try to remove potential distractions, such as small children.
Do your own research and come ready with starting points. Not doing so may result in the conversation not happening. This topic is something that will most likely not be resolved in a single meeting. Be prepared for several meetings and have small goals to achieve during each meeting. Even one decision made gets you further ahead than you were when you started.
Facing your own mortality isn’t easy. Don’t pressure your parents to make several big decisions in one sitting. Be patient and listen to them. Take notes of any concerns or ideas that are presented during these conversations as this may help you make decisions later. There are many reasons why people may be apprehensive to have these conversations and getting to the root of the issue may help you have a breakthrough.
It may be helpful to reach out to a third party to help if you feel you aren’t getting anywhere. There are professionals out there whose sole job is to help create estate plans and select the options that work best for your parents.