Most of us could use some amount of financial planning advice, no matter what our situation – but for many seniors on fixed incomes, paying for it is off the table. If Mom or Dad could use some help but lack the resources to hire a paid analyst, there are many excellent free resources both online and in your community that you can help them connect with. Here are just a few options to think about:
- Start with Dad’s local bank branch. Most offer free financial advice by trained advisors, by appointment; and while they do get paid on any services you buy, it’s in their best interest to offer sound advice no matter what. It’s understood that Dad is under no obligation to purchase a thing.
- The AARP website has pages of substantive financial advice delivered by top names like Jane Bryant Quinn, as well as helpful tools like financial calculators and budget planners. Paying their yearly membership fee will grant access to more personalized advice from financial advisors who have a minimum ten years’ experience in the field.
- Mom’s local Council on Aging chapter may either host free financial seminars or be able to direct her to some at nearby libraries, universities, and senior centers.
- The IRS has a special section of its website dedicated to year-round tax advice for seniors and retirees. Topics include the ABCs of tax deductions; different retirement plans and their tax implications; military retirement pay and veterans’ benefits, as well as which social security benefits might be taxable. The government has also set up a program offering free in-person tax counseling for the elderly; you can find location and other info by clicking here.
- Financial planning sites like Mint and Dave Ramsey aren’t tailored to seniors, but have lots of excellent free information about budgeting and retirement planning, as well as creative ideas about how to stretch dollars and save.
Do you have a favorite site or resource we should know about? Tell us in the comments!