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Should I Stay or Should I Go? Options in Senior Living - Part Two

Should I Stay or Should I Go?  Options in Senior Living - Part Two
In this post, we’ll explore costs, advantages and disadvantages of some the options in senior living, as discussed by the panel of specialists hosted by Hilltop in May.  If you don’t know some of the terms we’re referencing, check out last week’s post. It seems like a lot of folks are talking about Continuing Care Retirement Communities.  What’s the advantage of these types of facilities? The great advantage of Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs) is that they roll all levels of care into one, says Julie Kopetsky, senior relocation specialist and president of Your Next Move.  In a CCRC, you can live independently, receive some level of assistance or receive skilled nursing.  Those sound great!  Are there any down sides? It is complicated and expensive to build retirement communities, so there may not be many of them near you.  There may also be a long waitlist and a fee to join the waitlist.  Further, being on the waitlist ...

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Should I Stay or Should I Go? Options for Senior Living – Part One

Should I Stay or Should I Go?  Options for Senior Living – Part One
You probably hate uncertainty, and you probably don’t like to think about becoming physically dependent, dying, or aging in a nursing home.  Put all of this together, and it can be hard to even think about where you’ll live as you age, who will take care of you, or how you’ll pay for it all.  Yet, if you don’t make plans in these areas, you are giving up control over some of the most important decisions you’ll ever make.  We’ve seen concern about this among our clients, and studies have shown that Americans at large are underprepared for the costs and legal implications of late-life disability and dependence.  Independent living, continuing care retirement communities, advance healthcare directives, etc – just understanding the terms can be overwhelming!  But enough of the bad news.  There are many good senior living options these days.  If you know the terminology and who to ask for help, planning to age may be easier than you ...

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What Can an Escape Room Teach You About Financial Planning?

What Can an Escape Room Teach You About Financial Planning?
When you truly trust the people you work with, you aren’t afraid to be locked up with them, at least for a little while.  At Hilltop, we recently put our mutual trust to the test and went to an escape room for a little bit of team building.  If you don’t know what an escape room is, I should explain: the host locks you in a room, and you escape by finding clues, solving puzzles, and answering riddles.  (Of course, there’s a panic button that lets you out in a hurry – as our host explained, the fire marshall frowns on locking people in.)  This was an exciting and fun-filled experience, and after we finished, I couldn’t help but see some parallels with financial planning:   Work together and use everybody’s skill set During our escape room experience, Brittany, the team’s math major, deciphered one particular clue pretty quickly.  But she had to explain it to the rest of us a couple times before we understood what she had done. ...

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Do right, even when things get muddy

Do right, even when things get muddy
In my spare time, I enjoy training for and running obstacle course races.  These involve such challenges as crawling through mud, climbing over walls, and experiencing mild electric shocks.  Fun, right?  No, I’m serious, it is tremendous fun.  But to you, this may sound crazy, so you’ll choose not to participate.  That’s fine, it’s not for everyone.  This is a voluntary challenge, and I have chosen to subject myself to it. Similarly, we at Hilltop have accepted a challenge that many financial advisors eschew.  When we became a Registered Investment Advisor one year ago, we took on a burden known as the fiduciary legal standard.  This means that we must act in our clients’ best interests at all times, which is the rule for RIAs.  We strive for the fiduciary standard not because it’s fun, but because it’s the right thing to do.  However, the Department of Labor is on the verge of enacting a rule that would cha ...

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