The Elder Care Firm October 2017


Maybe your decades-old car finally bit the dust. Maybe your ride got totaled by a teenager on a smartphone. Or maybe you just want a new set of wheels. There are a lot of reasons why you may find yourself looking to buy a car, and there are a lot of questions to answer before you do. The first question is, did you plan for this expense? The average American buys a new car every seven to 10 years, so if you plan on 20 years of retirement, you need to factor in at least two car purchases during that time — and possibly more. The second question is the biggest one: Where’s the money going to come from? Most people, including most retired people, will finance their new car and trade in the old one. This is a good option for people with steady retirement income, such as those drawing a pension. But it might be harder

to get a loan if your income is less consistent, say, if you liquidate investment assets every month to pay the bills.

Third, could you just pay cash? Most of us don’t have buckets of the stuff lying around, but you can always tap into an IRA or other account for the money to buy a car. Try to do half in December and half in January to split the tax penalty between two years. You could also sell off two cars and use the money they generate to buy one, which will cut down on other car-related expenses as well. The last question is, what are the hidden costs? Maintenance and repairs are just par for the course, but they don’t tell you that as you age, your insurance premiums could go up, especially after that texting teenager T-boned you. Your retirement planner should have a big-picture idea of what you should plan and watch out for when you buy a car.


I think I hadn’t even left when I called to set up an appointment. They got me in the same week and had a follow-up meeting with my parents. “He got us signed up for VA benefits that my father, a WWII veteran, qualified for but didn’t even know existed. When he passed away in March, the team even made sure we received these benefits retroactively for a number of months. These benefits, along with the lady bird deed he set up on our family home, made a huge difference in our lives. He also set up power of attorney, which allowed me to make decisions on behalf of my parents. “Overall, I cannot recommend Chris Berry and the Elder Care Firm highly enough. They are experts, and they always put their clients first.” Jackie Herbert’s Story

“I cannot say enough good things about the work that Chris and the Elder Care Firm team did for my family. At the time when my family most needed a steady hand, Chris gave us options and resources I didn’t even know were available. “To give you a little background, after being retired for 30 years, my dad was in the hospital. At the same time, my mother had a stroke. During their retirement, they went through three motor homes, travelling across 47 states. They made the most of these years, but there wasn’t a lot of money left when they got sick. I was worried I would need to quit my job and sell their house in order to make sure they got care. “During this time, I went to an expo on elder law matters. Chris was the first speaker, and I made sure to sign up for his talk. The words that came out of his mouth were just what I needed to hear.

–Jackie Herbert

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