By: Ed Carter
When you have a disability, the idea of planning for the future is daunting. It can be even more intimidating if you are unable to work for long periods or have children or other dependants. Fortunately, there are ways to plan ahead. Doing so now will not only ease your mind, but can also protect your loved ones from a financial disaster. Here’s how to start:
Speak to a financial advisor.
If you think that financial advisors are only for the elite, you are, very fortunately, wrong. Financial advisors help people in all income brackets make the most of their current funds and look for ways to enhance their future financial situation. According to Compass Financial Services, the point of financial planning is to lay down a framework that helps you meet your goals.
Invest in insurance.
Whether you have a disability or not, insurance is essential to your well-being both now and later. One type of coverage you may not have considered is burial insurance. This is a financial policy that can help cover your final expenses, including a funeral and a few outstanding debts. According to Lincoln Heritage Life Insurance, burial insurance is often available to people of all ages, although it may be best suited for those over 50. Depending on your age, you may be able to enjoy rates as low as $25 per month for a $10,000 death benefit.
Long-term care insurance is another important policy to consider. Dave Ramsey recommends long-term care insuranceand, considering that assisted living can cost more than $45,000 each year, having a safety net in place can save your family from financial ruin.
Determine if you are eligible for disability benefits.
If you become unable to work because of a disability, you may be eligible for disability benefits through the government. For planning purposes, let’s look at SSDI and SSI. DisabilitySecrets contributor attorney Bethany K. Laurence explains that, while the two are similar, there is a significant distinction. SSDI, which is Social Security Disability Insurance, offers benefits to individuals who have a history of earned income. SSI, on the other hand, is set aside for those with less than $2,000 in assets. You can visit the Social Security Administration online and take a quick questionnaire to determine if you might be eligible for benefits.
Look for ways to supplement your income.
Despite being one of the wealthiest countries in the world, many citizens of the United States don’t make enough money to fund their future. If you have a disability, you are even less likely to build a nest egg. When you do not qualify for SSDI or SSI, it can be helpful to look for a part-time job to supplement your income. Utilize your current skills, and plan to spend a few hours each week earning money specifically to put into a savings account. A few ideas of jobs you can do from homeinclude launching a blog and becoming an online tutor.
Utilize the resources you have available.
In addition to government benefits, many people with disabilities qualify for local programs that can help them make the most of their finances. There might be services available in your area that can help you learn how to spend your money wisely, find lucrative employment opportunities, or get help with your taxes.
Just as you are responsible for what happens to you today, it is up to you to take care of yourself – and your family – now and in the future. Financial planning is essential. The sooner you do it, the better off you will be. The above advice can help you get started.