Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Aging Well, Like Raising a Child, Takes a Village


Aging Well, Like Raising a Child, Takes a Village


Thousands of Americans reach retirement age every day. They are Baby Boomers, and they, more than any generation before, want to remain in their own space throughout their senior years. However, being completely independent is not always possible. Thankfully, there are many alternatives to help seniors age not just in place but in community, where they will have access to support and services for all of their years. Here’s what you should know courtesy of Boomers Retirement.


What is Aging in Community?


Aging in community is simply the idea of staying as self-sufficient as possible while taking advantage of tools to remain healthy and safe. Dr. Bill Thomas explains that aging in place becomes more about utilizing social capital and less on financial stability.


The World Around You


One of the biggest obstacles for older adults is transportation. If it is no longer safe for you to drive, you may need to consider other ways you can get around. While it’s true that Medicare can get you to the hospital in case of an emergency or near-emergency, it does not offer services to get you back and forth from regular doctors appointments or for other errands that you have to run. Medicare Advantage, however, plans often do provide transportation coverage. So, make a point to review your current policy and make any changes necessary to ensure that you receive all of the benefits you may need as you age.


Another significant issue is the affordability of living alone. Consider looking for a 50-plus roommate to help keep costs down. There are plenty of widows and divorcees who would rather share a home than to struggle physically and financially. Mother Nature Network contributor Starre Vartan notes that there are services that can pair you with a like-minded Boomer roomie. Before you take this step, make sure to perform a thorough background check on anyone with whom you are considering sharing your living space.


Safety at Home


Now that you’ve taken care of transportation and affordability, you will also want to bear in mind the livability of your property. Being safe at home may require making a few modifications to compensate for mobility, cognitive, or vision impairments. Added lighting along the stairs, grab bars in the bathroom, and wider doorways can all help. Caregiver support site DailyCaring goes into a great deal of details on how to modify your home room-by-room in this guide.


Carefully consider what safety improvements you can make outdoors as well. For instance, cracks in your walkway should be filled, and loose planks in your stairs should be replaced. If you’ve got a tree or large branch that’s in danger of falling on your home, you’ll want to get it removed. As you search for “tree work near me,” it’s always a good idea to read testimonials from past customers. Sites like Angi offer customer feedback and can inform you of any tree removal services offering discounts in your area. Always ask for an estimate and referrals before hiring.


The Village Is Vast


More than just relying on your friends, family, and Medicare amenities, many areas now offer senior-specific networks known as a village model. A village model is essentially a network of older adults who look out for one another. Instead of being independent, those within a village community model are interdependent. They rely on one another for support and often have a single coordinator, who is a paid employee, that can do things like schedule get-togethers and even screen contractors. Perhaps the biggest benefit of a village community is that it can stave off isolation, which is a common issue that contributes to depression, alcoholism, and even suicide within the senior community.


No matter where you or your aging loved one chooses to live in their senior years, you should all know that you have options. While independent and assisted living homes are certainly a valuable asset for those who need hands-on help, aging in place and within your own community is an affordable and enjoyable alternative that makes sense for many seniors. Before you make a decision, do your research and know the pros and cons of each option.


Image via Pexels

Monday, September 27, 2021

How to Use Technology to Boost Senior Health


How to Use Technology to Boost Senior Health


Seniors make up a big part of the population. In fact, Senior Living notes there are roughly 47 million seniors living in the United States, and that number will soon go up as the baby boomer generation approaches the defining age of 65. With numbers like that, some experts fear we could face a serious health crisis.  Yet while those statistics may sound daunting, modern technology provides older adults with advantages previous generations couldn’t enjoy.


Boomers Retirement invites you to read on for some of the many ways today’s seniors can put tech to work for better well-being.

Smartphone Apps

Perhaps the most convenient way to utilize technology for senior health is to download helpful apps to your smartphone. Here are a few favorites:

     Fabulous is a motivational health app that lets users set goals and gives daily reminders to encourage them to make a routine out of their most healthy habits.

     The GoodRx app can help seniors find discounts on prescription medications, and most pharmacies these days have their own downloadable app so seniors can order their refills in a matter of seconds.

     The Red Panic Button app lets users summon anyone in their emergency contact list simply by pressing one easy button.


While apps are simple to use, they are typically powered by complex programming. Seniors should know in advance that many feature-rich apps require more power, memory, and speed to run well than some older smartphones provide. If it’s time to find a more suitable phone, there are plenty of plans and models that are up to the task, and some service providers allow trade-ins of older models for discounts on new ones. Remember that buying a new phone may require some other purchases since your current phone case or charger may not be compatible with newer smartphone models

Smart Home Devices

For the simple purpose of making life easier, CNET notes smart home devices are a great way for seniors to utilize technology in their homes. Bluetooth speakers equipped with AI assistants, like the Alexa-enabled Amazon Echo, make it easy for people to create grocery lists, set alarms and reminders, check the weather, and play music, just by simply talking to the device.


Another suggestion is to hook up a Smart Hub with smart door locks, light bulbs, and thermostat, so seniors can control just about everything in the home without even standing up. The possibilities are nearly endless!


One of the biggest technological advances in recent history is the development of GPS for public use. For people suffering from memory ailments like Alzheimer's and dementia, GPS services can be utilized to locate a person in the event that they wander off and get lost. GPS sensors can be worn as bracelets or be added to clothing or shoes, so loved ones can be located quickly before they can hurt themselves. It’s an unobtrusive way to boost safety and peace of mind.

Medicare Open Enrollment

Beyond the home environment and daily life, healthcare also involves routine care from medical professionals. With that in mind, seniors must remember that the Medicare Open Enrollment period is from October 15 through December 7 each year.


During this time, seniors can change from Original Medicare to Medicare Advantage or vice versa. They can also switch Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D plans. Sometimes seniors find a reduction in their out-of-pocket expenses by switching plans, and it can mean broader healthcare coverage.


AARP points out the benefits provided through Medicare Advantage are more extensive than ever, so many seniors find it’s worth making comparisons to see if they can come out ahead. Technology steps in to help here as well, since those who wish to make changes can do so online, and those who do not want changes do not need to do anything as plans will auto-renew.


Seniors of today have more health-related advantages than any previous generation. Thanks to technology, seniors can utilize these tips to improve their daily routine, stay safe and more independent, and check their Medicare plan. With just a bit of tech at their fingertips, it’s a chance for a happier and healthier life.

Image courtesy of Pixabay

Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Skills to Pursue Online During Your Golden Years

 Looking for guidance as you navigate senior life as a boomer? Then subscribe to Boomer Retirement today for tips on tackling senior conundrums and learning to enjoy this new chapter.


Skills to Pursue Online During Your Golden Years



Image courtesy of Pixabay


Your golden years can be your years of golden opportunities!  Adding to your skill set and increasing personal growth is a terrific fountain of youth.  Thanks to the internet, there is a wealth of options available. 


Why you should be learning


One of the best things you can do to keep your mind sharp as you age is to keep it active.  Just as physical exercise benefits your body, mental exercise benefits your brain.  According to studies cited by Psychology Today, choices you make in how you live can maintain your brain’s resilience and ability to age well.  You can actually boost your brain’s health and slow cognitive aging with mental, physical, and social activity.  There is every indication that not only can you learn new things as you age, it’s actually good for you! 


Exploring possibilities


The internet is a deep well of information, and you are likely to find resources for virtually anything you would enjoy exploring.  Contemplate what topics interest you, and then start surfing!  Choose something fun and exciting, perhaps something you always wanted to learn about but haven’t had the chance to.  You don’t need to worry about grades and deadlines, so this is your opportunity to do anything you would enjoy.  Here are some options that we really like:


Home Projects.  You may find that making certain home improvements can actually be quite enjoyable, especially if they're a source of entertainment.  For example, if you have space in your backyard for a fire pit, you may want to consider installing one, as it can also boost the appearance of your outdoor space.  You can create one yourself by following online step-by-step guides, and there are different types of fire pits you can choose from, such as in-ground and tin.  Gather the necessary materials and get building!


Art.  Being creative offers benefits to your wellness, reducing depression and helping you feel happier and more productive and increasing social connections.  Experts note the impact is so powerful it might even reduce many health care and medical needs.  Class Central suggests exploring free online courses at the Museum of Modern Art for information that is relevant, creative, and inspiring.  Selections are rich and varied, with courses on everything from fashion to photography to understanding abstract painting.  It’s sure to get your creative juices flowing!  


Music. If you’ve always loved music but have never been able to pursue it, now is a better time than ever. The internet can help you with every part of the process, from buying your instrument to taking lessons. For example, if you’ve always wanted to learn to play the trumpet, you can check out online instrument reviews and pick the best trumpet for you. Then, you can search the web for an in-person instructor, or take individual or group online lessons on sites like YouTube and 8Notes. The internet makes it possible for you to take up this hobby without ever having to leave home!


Nutrition.  Looking to learn more about improving your well-being through food?  Monash University offers a free online course called “Food as Medicine” throughout the year.  This terrific program offers information on how food can boost health, fight chronic disease, and prevent illness.  You also learn how to evaluate what is in food and recognize good choices for your health and well-being.


Language.  According to some studies, no matter how old you are, there are benefits in learning a new language.  Also, for many adults, learning a new language can be easier than for children, since you already have a foundation of grammar and structuring words to build on.  You can find free language courses online that cover a range of fluent levels. 


Photography.  According to some researchers, learning digital photography is particularly valuable, engaging your mind in ways that offer a superior memory boost over activities like doing word puzzles and other less engaging mental exercises.  Harvard University offers a free, self-paced program. 


Live and learn!  Make your golden years even brighter by adding online learning to your lifestyle.  Broadening your skills and exercising your brain is healthy and fun.  Decide what you would like to learn, and get surfing!



Sunday, April 11, 2021

How Your Golden Years Can Be Your Best Years — Even on a Fixed Income


How Your Golden Years Can Be Your Best Years — Even on a Fixed Income

Living on a fixed income is commonly seen as being limited in the lifestyle you live. While it’s true that this can be the case, it doesn’t have to be. By budgeting, eliminating debt, and making a few other moves, you can live a restriction-free, fulfilling life in your golden years. If you want to know more about how to live well on your fixed income, read on for some practical tips from Boomers Retirement

Make a budget you can stick to. 

The first part of thriving on a fixed income is creating a budget. And to make a budget that you can stick to requires you to be realistic about all of your expenses. So, list all of your fixed expenses, including your mortgage or rent, insurance, groceries, and utilities. Then, subtract those expenses from your total monthly income (from all sources). This will show you how much money you have left for discretionary spending

At the very least, creating a budget should show you where you can make adjustments so that you can make the most of your money, even if that means undergoing a major life change to free up your finances for other things. 

Knock out debt.

There’s no getting around it: debt is a killer. If you are straddled with debt, there’s little opportunity for you to spend money on the things that bring you happiness. The first thing you need to do in order to enhance your budget is to work toward eliminating your debt. Pay off your credit cards as soon as possible, and avoid using them in the future unless you can comfortably make the monthly payments. This will help you avoid the staggering interest rates that come with them. 

Consider working.  

Along with tackling your debt, think of ways that you can pad your income. If you are able to work, look around town for part-time opportunities. Chances are there are a number of organizations and companies that will value your experience. This could mean picking up shifts at a local coffee shop, restaurant, art museum, or even at a company that specializes in the industry in which you spent your career.

Another thing to consider is going freelance. The freelance market is massive, and it includes almost any industry you can think of. For example, if you have customer service experience, you can use your skills as a freelance customer service agent. If you are a retired teacher, you can teach remotely in a part-time capacity. Even if your experience is in engineering, accounting, or consulting, you can find work-from-home opportunities through online job boards. 

See where you can cut. 

Finally, evaluate your budget and figure out where you can cut expenses. For example, if you live in a house that is much too big for your lifestyle, downsizing could save you a ton of money on mortgage, insurance, utilities, and taxes. Or, if you’re leasing a car every few years, you could save big by purchasing a late model or used car and driving it until it quits. Also, reassessing how you buy and use groceries can be a major money-saver. 

Try your hand at starting your own business.

For many retirees, adjusting to life on a fixed income can be difficult, even if you have no trouble sticking to your budget. Sometimes, you just want to enjoy a little more flexibility and a larger financial cushion. You can accomplish this by starting a side hustle right from your home! Many retirees find fulfillment in small business ownership.

Perhaps you’re already excited about a particular business idea. Once you’ve decided on a name, you’ll need to go about filing for a business entity in your state. After all, you need to make sure that your personal assets are protected, and naturally, you’ll want to find ways to save during tax season. If you’re not quite sure how to approach this process, don’t worry - you can work with an online formation service if you have lots of questions.

Just because you’re on a fixed income doesn’t mean your life has to be limited or unrewarding. Draw up a realistic budget, work toward eliminating all your debt, look for employment opportunities, and cut expenses where possible. Implementing these tips can help put you in a better position to flourish in your golden years. 

For more valuable resources and insight into retirement life, be sure to bookmark 

Boomers Retirement.

Karen Weeks


Monday, March 8, 2021

Heavily-Indebted Boomers Increasingly The Ones Going Bankrupt:

 BUSINESS (Canada)

02/10/2021 16:47 EST
Heavily-Indebted Boomers Increasingly The Ones Going Bankrupt: Study
Rapidly rising house prices are shielding indebted borrowers from insolvency, but for those without real estate, it’s a different story.

By Daniel Tencer

Amid the COVID-19 economic crisis, a lot of attention has focused on younger working Canadians, who have been disproportionately hit by job losses. But a new survey of consumer bankruptcies suggests it’s aging Canadians ― those over 50 ― who are increasingly ending up insolvent.

People aged 50-plus have seen their share of insolvencies jump since the start of the pandemic, from 28.3 per cent in 2019 to 31.4 per cent immediately after last year’s lockdowns, according to a study from insolvency trustees Hoyes Michalos. The study looked at 3,900 Ontario insolvencies filed with the firm.

This comes at a time when ― thanks to emergency pandemic income supports from the government ― the number of Canadians who filed for insolvency actually dropped by nearly 30 per cent, according to the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy.