Ways to Help Aging Parents Get Their Affairs in Order

As parents age, it becomes more important to create a plan for the future. Not only can this help ensure their wishes are met, but it can keep you from having to make difficult decisions regarding their health, senior care and more.

If you’re looking to help your parents get their affairs in order but aren’t sure where to start, Waterstone at Wellesley is here to guide you.

Perks of Preparing for the Future

Seniors and adult children who are preparing retirement plans are often left with a sense of security and peace of mind once they are finalized. Check out some of the most common perks they experience, both right away and when the need arises.

  • When you need to step in for support, you know what is needed and where all important paperwork is
  • Emergencies are less stressful to handle
  • You aren’t left making decisions at the last second for your parents
  • It allows you to understand and honor your parents’ wishes
  • Everyone will be on the same page, reducing conflicts

How To Get Started

While some may think that getting affairs in order means simply preparing a will, it encompasses so much more. Among these important topics include:

  • Legal affairs, including estate planning and establishing powers of attorney
  • Financial planning, like saving for retirement, medical care and wealth accumulation
  • Healthcare wishes and long-term care plans

If you or your parents aren’t sure where to begin, try following the steps below.

Discuss all matters with key family members.

When planning for the future, you and your parents will want to keep all key family members involved. Not only will this ensure everyone is on the same page, but it will help keep the peace while making sure there are no hard feelings, no one is left out of decisions, and there are no surprises.

Ensure the right documents are in place.

Help your parents make sure that all their needed legal documents are in order and secure. According to AARP, you should gather the following documents and ensure they are stored in a safe area.

  • Their will and living will
  • Advance directives
  • Statements of durable powers of attorney for finances and healthcare
  • A family plan detailing caregiving roles so everyone knows what they are responsible for
  • Birth, marriage and death certificates; divorce decrees; citizenship papers; Social Security cards
  • Deeds to property or cemetery plots
  • Military discharge papers
  • Insurance policies and pension benefits
  • Medication lists

Discuss finances.

It’s important to be aware of your aging parents’ finances. Whether they have hired a financial professional or are currently looking into it, they can help you and your family manage wealth, assess retirement income, adjust risk tolerance, determine the right retirement plans, help you get the most tax advantages, answer questions about Social Security, and more.

Knowing their financial status can also help you manage their retirement accounts, including Roth IRAs or 401(k) accounts, or pay their bills when needed.

Get permission to talk to your parents’ providers on their behalf.

It will be important for you to be able to access your parents’ bank accounts, health records and more. Make sure your parent provides written permission for you to do this in case of emergencies, and don’t forget to have them list out their bills and how they are paid.

Plan out future care wishes.

Where do your parents envision themselves in the future? Do they want to remain at home, with home care, when health needs arise? Or would they prefer to move to a senior living community like Waterstone at Wellesley, with:

  • Access to an enriching, maintenance-free lifestyle
  • Endless opportunities to enjoy each day
  • Care available if or when it may be needed, tailored to their needs

If they prefer to move, you can help your parents take charge by touring their options, beginning their downsizing journey, and establishing exactly what it is they want for their future.

Here Through Every Step

At Waterstone at Wellesley, we know that future planning can be a difficult process to navigate. For some, it may be overwhelming, for others, it can bring peace of mind knowing there is a plan in place. Whichever situation you find yourself in, we want you to know we are here for you.

For more information about future planning and getting your parents’ affairs in order, contact us today. We’d be happy to share more information, invite you to an event, or schedule a personal visit for you and your parents.


Waterstone at Wellesley offers independent living and assisted living options in the heart of Wellesley, MA. Contact us for more information or to schedule a personal visit today.