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Planning for Later Life: Managing Money

Published on 23 February 2024 02:25 PM

Managing your money in later life can feel stressful. But following some simple steps can help ease worry.  

Managing your own money

Taking time to properly manage your own finances can help you in the long run. It’s important to keep your Personal Identification Number (PIN) for each bank account secret and think carefully before sharing them with friends and family, even if you trust them. It's a good idea to regularly check your bank account so you can quickly flag any spending you do not recognise with your bank. It’s also good practice to keep bank statements and bills for a minimum of six years to keep track of your spending long term and cross reference any payments. When you decide to dispose of personal documents make sure you shred them to keep information secure. Finally, although it can feel more secure, it’s not usually a good idea to keep large amounts of cash at home.

Getting a small amount of help

It can be difficult to ask for help, especially when it comes to managing money, but it’s important to recognise when you need assistance and ask someone you trust. You may want to ask multiple people for help with different things. The chances are, they’ll be happy to help and relieved that you asked. During the conversation it’s important to outline what you do and do not want help with. If one of the things you need help with is shopping, it’s a good idea to write down what you want them to buy, work out roughly how much it should cost, and ask them for receipts. To make things easier, you might want to use gift or prepaid cards so someone can only spend a limited amount of money on your behalf. If you are lent money by someone, pay them back by cheque or bank transfer, rather than cash, so you have a record of it.

Getting a lot of help

There might come a time when you need extra help managing your finances There are a few things you can do to make it easier, including setting up standing orders and direct debits for regular bills and payments so you know they’re being taken care of. For some bills you can set up third-party management, which will allow someone else to receive copies and pay on your behalf. You can also set up a third-party mandate with your bank or building society so someone else can manage it on your behalf. You may be able to limit what they can do so certain things will be off-limits.

Who can help?

Age UK Norfolk’s Money Matters service offers one to one support to over 65's. You will have a dedicated volunteer helping you manage your day-to-day household finances and paperwork so you can remain independent for as long as possible. See our Money Matters page for more information - Money Matters.