How Much Does It Cost to be a Caregiver?

It is not uncommon for every family to have its own guidelines and expectations for handling money. This includes how to save, how to spend, who has control, and how decisions are made. When you start caring for someone, your decisions about their care are heavily influenced by your financial situation. And there is no denying that financial issues can lead to a lot of conflict in families.

Money must be discussed as soon as a person requires care. Many senior citizens are hesitant to disclose their financial situation to their adult children. It is difficult to accept that this is the "rainy day" they have been saving for their entire lives. They are understandably very hesitant to cede control over their finances. However—particularly when a person exhibits signs of cognitive decline—a caregiver must manage the money to avoid mistakes, such as not paying bills on time or paying them twice, neglecting investments, engaging in irrational spending, or simply losing money at home or on the street.

Financial Considerations When Becoming a Caregiver

MetLife estimates that people who care for their parents will collectively lose close to $3 trillion in wages, pensions, and Social Security benefits. You should budget for a variety of expenses that you can anticipate. However, you should also budget for the unforeseen and unanticipated costs of being a caregiver.

One of the most prominent costs of being a caregiver is giving up your ability to work and losing wages. According to the study mentioned above, the total individual amount of lost work due to prematurely leaving the labor force to become a caregiver is around $142,693 for women and $89,107 for men. Unfortunately, these costs can also be compounded by various out-of-pocket expenses for food, basic necessities, medical care, and transportation costs.

Cheerful friendly caregiver doing her job

Being a caregiver can be expensive. If you or a loved one is a veteran, you should look into the additional support that may be available to you in addition to any tax benefits that may be available to you as a caregiver. Budget effectively for the anticipated and unforeseen costs of being a caregiver by discussing these expenses with your family.

How To Talk About Money with Your Loved One

The ability of the caregiver to make wise long-term financial decisions will be hampered if they lack a thorough understanding of the financial situation of the person in need of care. It can be challenging to start a conversation; however, it is a necessary part of the process to ensure financial risks are minimized.

Taking the time to outline the needs and wants of your loved one can help guide the conversation further. It is essential to focus on potential housing changes, care requirements, and other factors that may cause financial strain. You'll be better able to honor those wishes and feel good about doing so if you better understand how your loved one thinks about money and their specific wishes.

Asian physician nurse support to elderly male patient on wheelchair

There may be feelings of not being trusted or being treated like a child if a parent won't allow the family caregivers to manage finances. If there isn't much money, there may be anger and resentment over the perception that the parents placed the adult children in a challenging situation. Greed can influence decision-making when there is a lot of money available.

Money can be an incredibly emotional topic for not only a parent in need of care but also the children responsible for facilitating the care. Our complex emotions are challenging to manage, and sometimes these emotions manifest themselves in disagreements over money. Instead of causing the family to fall apart due to these problems, a family meeting with a facilitator might help.

Why Choose Deano's for Non-Emergency Medical Transportation?

Deano's was created out of the need for caretaking. At first, the company did pickups and transport for a handful of people, but then the need was significant enough to create a more extensive operation so that the seniors of central Oklahoma could make it to their appointments. We want to ensure that each client feels cared for and appreciated. Give us a call for punctual service that will help ease your mind!

Deanos Senior Transit Van