Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Tips for Older Adults to Keep Your Money Safe

Tips for Older Adults to Keep Your Money Safe
Older Americans are an attractive target for scammers. Many have built a considerable nest egg from a lifetime of saving, home equity and savvy retirement planning. Add to this naivety regarding the tactics of a scammer, and you have the perfect recipe for criminals to bilk you out of hundreds or even thousands of dollars.  Here are seven tips to protect older adults from the illicit practices of scammers and keep their money safe.
  1. Financial Trustee – Choose a trusted advisor to make financial decisions on your behalf. This is a great way to keep all financial considerations under a professional’s watchful eye.
  2. Know who is in your home – Caregivers, cleaning professionals and other contractors may have access to many private areas of your home. Conduct background checks and ask for references for anyone you employ within your home.
  3. Delay signing papers – If you are unsure what a financial paper means, consult your attorney or financial advisor before you sign anything. If you are being pressured to sign, this might be an indication that something is not right.
  4. Know what a Power of Attorney (POA) means – Giving a family member the power to make decisions on your behalf also means they have access to your financial accounts. Get professional 3rd party help when setting up a POA and do not just go by what your family member recommends.
  5. Trust your gut – If something just doesn’t seem right, don’t do it, no matter how convincing the scammer might be.
  6. Don’t leave a paper trail – Shred old documents and even junk mail to ensure you are not giving scammers an easy way to access personal information. Store important documents in a safe deposit box.
  7. Lock ‘em up – Store checkbooks, credit card and other financial information in a safe place. Consider purchasing a small home safe for these valuable items.
At McHenry Savings Bank, we believe our job is to partner with our customers to keep their money safe. We provide a variety of saving and checking account options and we take security of those accounts very seriously. We also offer our valued customers financial and retirement planning services through our wholly owned subsidiary, McHenry County Investment Services Inc. If you have questions or concerns about your financial decisions, please feel free to contact one of our trusted experts.