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Guest Contributor: Sharon Wagner
Getting married as a senior is far from unusual. Research indicates that seniors are getting remarried in record numbers, an increase of about 55% since 1960. Advancements in medicine and public health promotion have enabled seniors to live many more disease-free years than in the past. Why not spend those golden years building a fulfilling life with your new sweetheart?
Of course, senior couples need to consider a few important things before tying the knot. Where are you going to live? How will you handle finances? Are you prepared for long-term care costs? How are your estate plans going to change? And what are you going to do together with all your free time? In this article, we’ll explore some of these questions and help you plan for a long and happy marriage!
Talk About Long-Term Care
All senior couples need to have a conversation about long-term care at some point, preferably sooner than later. You just never know when an accident or illness could alter your ability to care for yourself or your partner. Long-term care takes many forms and it’s important to understand your options well before you need to make a decision. This is where Senior Living Concierge Services LLC can help! As professional senior living placement and referral experts, we can help you find long-term care solutions that fit your needs and budget.
When reviewing your long-term care options, be sure to consider location, proximity to loved ones, amenities, staffing, services, culture, and options for transitions to higher care and specialized memory care. This is also a good opportunity to consider long-term care costs and funding options. You might still have time to get a good rate on a long-term care insurance policy!
Consider Your Housing Options
While you might not need to move into long-term care just yet, you and your new spouse will need to decide where you’re going to live after getting married. Do you move into their house? Do they move into yours? Do you buy a new home together? And if so, what do you do with your existing homes? These are all important questions to discuss before getting married. Remember that this is as much a financial decision as it is a lifestyle decision. It may be in your best interest to sell both homes and downsize into a smaller space, putting the profits towards fun retirement plans like traveling the world or starting a business.
Find a Mutual Passion Project
Engaging in new, exciting activities with your new spouse is a great way to bond and keep your relationship strong. Life can get boring pretty quickly after retirement. Thankfully, there are countless ways to spend your time and build fulfillment into your golden years.
Starting a business, for example, is a great way to spend time together and bond over a mutual passion project. At the same time, your business can help pad your retirement income and fund your retirement plans. Running a business in retirement doesn’t have to feel like the regular 9-to-5 job you left behind. Come up with a business idea that interests and excites you! Just remember to draw up a business plan describing your company, how you’ll sell your services, how you intend to structure your business, and what funding you will need. Check out this great how-to guide on starting a business to learn more!
A solid marketing plan will further increase your chances of launching a successful business. Branding is key! To get started with branding your business, use online design tools to create your own logo. These tools make it easy to create custom business logos based on pre-designed templates, so your logo will always come out looking professional.
Discuss Combining Your Finances
When you get married, you’ll need to decide what you’re going to do about your finances. Will you keep them separate or combine them? MarketWatch explains that there are pros and cons to each option. While combining your finances can make money management easier, seniors who have been single for a long time may feel uncomfortable with the rules that come with sharing resources. If you anticipate that combining your funds will create tension in your relationship, it may be best to keep your money separate.
Think About Estate Planning
Estate planning is essential before getting married later in life. Marriage often means a blending together of two families, merging adult children and assets that need to be addressed in your estate plan. Discuss this with your partner to ensure you both feel that your wishes and objectives are met. Start by taking inventory of your assets and deciding how everything will be divided among your descendants. Next, talk about your end-of-life decisions, update critical documents, and set up a trust with a qualified estate attorney. These aren’t fun conversations, but they’re necessary!
Get a Prenup
Getting a prenup is a very sensible move, even if talking to your spouse about it is more than a little uncomfortable. Katie Courmic Media explains that prenuptial agreements become even more important for senior couples because people tend to acquire more assets as they get older. A prenup can further help to protect your pension payments, SS benefits, or medical insurance benefits. Prenups can also help you predetermine how you’re going to handle certain issues during your marriage. For example, you may want to outline arrangements like spousal support, inheritance rights, and property distribution.
It’s never too late to get married! As long as you plan ahead, your marriage can enhance your golden years and improve your life. If you’re thinking about tying the knot, sit down with your partner and discuss issues like long-term care, estate planning, finances, housing, and your business plans. Clear and open communication is key!
Are you looking for local long-term care options? Senior Living Concierge Services LLC offers professional senior living options and recommendations to fit your individual needs. Call today! (816) 666-7083