12 Mar 5 Banking Tips for Senior Citizens
As we get older and head into retirement, knowing how to manage your finances is crucial. It is never too late to become financially literate, and we are here to help. Below, are five banking tips for seniors to help you get started.
Start a Budget
When you are retired, a budget becomes absolutely crucial. Knowing where your money is going, and how it is spent, is important now that you are on a fixed income. Sitting down and budgeting for the now, and for your future self, is important to make sure you aren’t overspending.
Don’t Push the Social Security Check
While you would, understandably, want to start withdrawing from your social security as soon as you retire, waiting is often your best bet. Rushing the process, and taking whatever the options are offered to you, can leave you hundreds of thousands of dollars short in the long run. By waiting and looking at your options, you can maximize your social security options. Also, consider your spouse’s benefits, where you would receive 50% of your spouse’s social security. Sometimes, this is a better scenario if your spouse makes more than you.
Consider a Senior Account
A senior account is a checking account that offers special benefits if you sign up. At the Bank of the Lowcountry, we have a senior account that offers no service charges, no minimum balances, earn interest on any balance, and gives you free checks. You must be 55 to sign up for our senior checking account.
Consider a Joint Account or Power of Attorney
If you are receiving help from your grandchildren or your children, consider opening a joint account. Then, your family member can have continued access to your finances, and will be able to deposit or withdraw on your behalf. Another option to consider is a Power of Attorney. This is where the person you select can see your accounts, yet won’t own them so won’t have as much power over your finances. If you would like to choose this route, you would need a lawyer, or you can sign the Power of Attorney agreement in front of a notary.
Beware of Scams
Senior citizens are often the target of financial scams. Knowing the signs of fraud, such as an unknown number asking you for your social security number in exchange for a future reward, can protect you and your money. A good rule of thumb is that if it appears too good to be true, it often is.
Financial literacy is an important skill to have at any age. At the Bank of the Lowcountry, we are here to answer any questions you may have about finances, including senior accounts. Contact us to learn about the options senior citizens have financially, and how we can help you bank better.