Stable Retirement Strategies for Family Caregivers

Family caregivers play a vital role in providing care and support to their loved ones. However, the responsibilities of giving care often leads to financial challenges and debt accumulation, making it crucial for them to take proactive steps towards improving their financial assets and addressing debt issues. 

A new report published from the 33rd annual Retirement Confidence Survey (RCS) finds that caregivers are more likely to have lower levels of assets and more likely to have problems with debt than non-caregivers. 

Over fifteen years ago, caregiving was my wake-up call to this "elephant in the room." Here are a few things I did to rectify the stumbling block:

  1. Evaluated the current finances: Took inventory of my assets, savings, and debts. Calculated income and expenses to get a clear picture of my financial status. The evaluation served as a foundation for creating a roadmap to make improvements and achieve long-term stability.

  2. Created a realistic budget: Identified my essential needs and prioritized them, including housing, healthcare costs, and daily living expenses. Thoughtfully considered where I could reduce discretionary spending to free up funds to decrease debt and increased savings. I saved every penny I could. 

  3. Managed debt: Then, I tackled debts by listing credit cards, loans, and medical bills. Fortunately, my debt was minimal. But if that's not the case for you, seek professional advice from a financial counselor or debt management agency.

  4. Increase income: This is where I excelled. I generated extra income by working several part-time jobs by freelancing. Today, I'm generating  passive income through investments and other means. The goal is to enhance financial stability and build a stronger retirement nest egg.

  5. Saving and investing are crucial for long-term financial security. It's crucial to start by building an emergency fund, avoid going into debt, and setting aside savings. Consult with a financial advisor to develop an investment strategy that aligns with your risk tolerance and retirement goals. Managing financial assets and addressing debt can be complex, so seek professional guidance. 

Family caregivers face unique challenges when it comes to managing finances and debt. It's crucial to evaluate the current financial situation. I am by no means a wealthy person. However, I have more peace of mind after implementing these steps. 

It was finances that rattled my cage and forced me to assess all 10 life domains and then, create a plan for the future. I encourage you to do the same. 



Carol Marak
Carol Marak LLC