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  • Writer's pictureErin McCloskey, CFP®, EA

Financial ways to show you love someone

Hello and Happy New Year! I hope you are well. I am so grateful for all the ways that people have been showing care for others in the past year to help us get through the difficult situations.

Valentine's Day is coming next month! Here are a few ways to show you love someone, from the perspective of a financial advisor. (This is a photo of me and someone I love, at Bryce Canyon.)

What says “I love you” more than:

-Life insurance

-A succession plan

-Access to passwords

Why would I say this? These things show you want your loved ones to be taken care of and have peace of mind should something happen to you. I had an experience several years ago of my husband being hospitalized, and realizing I didn't have access to his bank accounts or passwords. In that very stressful time, I needed everything else to be accessible and not have additional worry and stress. [He ended up being fine, and we made some changes right away!]

The more financial loss someone else would experience if you died or became disabled, the more you should consider insurance (life or disability, or long term care). Does your salary contribute to your housing, retirement plan, or for your child's college fund? If you were gone, would your family need to hire someone to replace the unpaid labor and childcare you perform at home? We NEVER know what is in store and if your loved ones would face hardship without your time, abilities or earnings, then please consider insurance.

A succession plan can mean a simple will, an estate plan, a trust, or all these things. It can also include insurance to make sure bills are paid on your death, and all your property can go to your intended beneficiaries. Having your wishes written down and witnessed by others can protect your family from your assets being divided by a court instead of as you would have wanted. If you have children, show you care by choosing guardians for them in case the worst should happen to you and your partner.

Finally, give your loved one the gift of access to your passwords! I cannot tell you how awful it was to have my young children at home, my husband hospitalized, and have that extra worry about taking care of contacting his manager and paying bills (oh, I should add, we had a major construction project also going on at the time) and losing even more sleep as a result. This is all fixed now; I am able to move funds around as needed and find any important contacts for my husband.

I am here to support you and help you make these important ideas a reality for you and your loved ones. Stay safe out there!


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