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Alzheimer's Disease (and other terminal diseases)

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    Alzheimer's Disease (and other terminal diseases)

    Many of us are dealing with aging parents who have AD, Parkinson's, or similar. I thought it would be useful to start a discussion on how we are caring for them and the financing thereof.

    I'll start: My dad was diagnosed with AD in 2012 at approximately age 73. But he lived on his own (divorced) so there was no "helper" to assist him. Luckily at the time, he was classified as "Mild Cognitive impairment" and was able to live on his own fairly well until the end of around 2014. At that point things started getting serious: He was forgetting to eat, losing all his keys, showing up for church not properly dressed, and so on.

    I moved him to Assisted Living in the spring of 2015. His assisted living costs $4200 per month and is about the nicest place in town. Additionally, I pay sitters from $1500 to $2000 per month to come and get him out of bed, interact with him throughout the day, put him to bed, and so on.

    So it's about a $6000 per month proposition.

    How to pay for all of that?

    Thankfully my dad gets paid about $4000 a month from his retirement plus social security. He also was very smart and purchased a long term care policy back in his 50s, that pays $3600 per month, and will for another year or so until the policy max has been met.

    I sold his house and contents in an auction, and combined with his savings, he had around $220K in savings. I took $182K of that and bought a rental property in March 2017 so that he could start gaining more income. Right now he gets around $2K a month from that.

    So...we have his property - likely worth now around $190K, his savings that is now back up to around $55K, and of course his incomes.

    I was scared to death of when his LTC policy runs out, so my strategy was to bank as much as we can between now and that time, plus get that extra income coming in.

    Plus, he might well be in a nursing home in a year - who knows.

    All in all, I am benefiting greatly from my dad's prudent financial decisions and his planning.

    Feel free to ask any questions about any costs associated with his care, strategies, etc.

    ONE THING I RECOMMEND FOR ALL OF US: Get full POWER OF ATTORNEY right now so that you can make financial decisions for your parents should they become incapacitated or compromised. If you don't have that in-hand, it will be a struggle for you!

    I may well be moving him to a memory care facility very soon as he is declining rapidly. That is around $5500 a month, but then I don't need to pay sitters any more since they have round the clock care.
    Last edited by TexasHusker; 09-25-2017, 11:00 AM.
    Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.

    -George Carlin

    Part II:

    Try to get your parents/in-laws to come clean about what they have.

    We are having this problem currently with our father-in-law:

    He is showing signs of dementia, but refuses to go to the doctor - presumably because he doesn't want to know the truth about his condition.

    Adding to that, his financial picture is "top secret" - he refuses to share any of his finances or will with the rest of the family. That is unfortunate, as it prevents the family from doing any planning.

    He may have $ millions of dollars (unlikely), or he may be dead broke (unlikely as well). However, no one really knows, because he won't let them look at the will. He is remarried, which complicates things further - what inheritance is hers, what inheritance is his own children's, etc. Who would know? No one can look at the will!

    Certainly, he is too obstinate to have a power-of-attorney, so the family will have to deal with that hurdle eventually.

    At the appropriate time - which is probably sooner than later - we need to be transparent with our kids and/or potential caregivers/decision-makers about the status of our financial affairs. Pride only handicaps the family.
    Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.

    -George Carlin


      Anybody here knows what dysautonomia is all about? My co-worker is having one.