Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

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Random Walker
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Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by Random Walker » Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:05 am

http://www.etf.com/sections/index-inves ... nopaging=1

A very sobering article; addresses the issues and conversations we most avoid. Much of the article reviews or refers to a book on the topic: Hidden Truths About Retirement & Long Term Care by Carolyn Rosenblatt and Mikol Davis.

Dave

goblue100
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by goblue100 » Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:38 am

This fits my in-laws:
"Rosenblatt and Davis relate having heard people, usually the ones with the worst health habits, say something like, “I don’t care if I don’t live long, I just want to have a good time.” The same people naively believe that if you have a lifestyle and habits that leave you prone to heart attacks, strokes, diabetes and so on, you don’t need to worry about outliving your assets because you will die early. The reality is that advances in medical science may save them. We are much better at saving lives than at paying for the costs of living a long time."

I'm pretty sure their plan was to smoke, drink and be merry and die early. The reality is obese, diabetic, and pretty immobile and still going at 77 and 78. And miserable.

Take care of yourselves.
Some people are immune to good advice. - Saul Goodman

Broken Man 1999
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:47 am

Certainly a sobering article.

My father died at age 91, though his mind was gone a couple of years prior. He had a fairly decent policy for a nursing home, but my brother, sister and I just couldn't put him in one. He had the assets to afford 24X7 care under the direct supervision of my sister. My sister had retired, and had moved in with him to help. He had always told us about his nursing home policy, as he wanted to save his assets for his children. But, we decided differently. I just think none of us would have been able to look ourselves in the mirror if we had put him in a nursing home instead of keeping him in his home. Dad is probably POed at us for not using the nursing home policy. Ah well, we all believe we did the right thing for HIM.

LTC is such an expensive proposition, I just don't know what the solution to the incredible cost might be. Certainly a family member can provide an enormous amount of care, but it comes with a price.

My MIL lived with us for the last few years of her life, and it really wore down my wife. We had already discussed the time when she couldn't go up and down the stairs, she would have to go. I just wasn't going to allow MIL to wreck my wife's health (mental and physical) to keep her mother out of a nursing home. Plus, wife deserved to be able to have a full life with our children and grandchildren. Perhaps that sounds selfish, but my wife had always been a doormat for her mother. Wife basically raised her younger siblings, while her mother moved through four bad marriages.

So a word of caution, don't neglect the real and heavy stress of any family member called upon to help. It truly isn't a light burden. though it might seem so at first. The financial costs are high, but the cost to a family member can be just as high, in stress.

Broken Man 1999
“If I cannot drink Bourbon and smoke cigars in Heaven than I shall not go. " -Mark Twain

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randomizer
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by randomizer » Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:04 am

Sad stuff. I can’t see myself ever having enough to cover these sorts of outcomes. Sign me up for the die young club.
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by jhfenton » Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:23 am

goblue100 wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:38 am
Take care of yourselves.
Forget planning to die young. My goal is to be the first centenarian to run a marathon. :beer (You can't tell, but that's a toasting-with-green-tea emoji, not the usual beer emoji.)

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by snarlyjack » Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:25 am

Perhaps my story will help someone & how
it influenced my investing.

I have told this story before but for the new members
I'll tell it again...

My Mom died of a combination of type 1 diabetes.
Her diabetes caused a series of strokes which disabled
her (walking with a walker & cane). Which also caused
dementia (short term memory loss). I was her care taker.
Endless hours with her doctors & hospital. None of this
was good.

But what amazed me is she was "obsessed" with our finances.
She was constantly checking her check book balance (hourly).
She knew she had a life insurance policy & social security
disability was in essence making the life insurance premiums.
She was obsessed with paying the bills (which was good).

She knew she was dying...we had endless conversations on
her life insurance policy. I was the sole beneficiary. She
would tell me...this is your big chance in life don't blow
it. Don't ever spend the principal (only spend the interest).
I was 18/19 years old at the time. I was 20 years old when she died.
The reason social security didn't take a part of the life insurance
is because I was under age 21 ( a minor).

This is what led me to dividend investing. For the quarterly dividends
to help me in life. Some people disagree with the strategy (and
that's ok). But I' am fulfilling my Mom's wishes & keeping my
promise to her of not spending the principal.

What I see is people are coming around to the realities of
life including Larry Swedroe. Their is more to a portfolio
than trying at maximize it. Their is more to life than being
100% tax efficient. Their are people looking down on us from
heaven watching things & watching over us...

Larry Swedroe if your reading this...Thank You for posting
your article. In our numerious conversations I sense your
seeing the bigger picture. Which is good, good for you!

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HomerJ
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by HomerJ » Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:30 am

Broken Man 1999 wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:47 am
Certainly a sobering article.

My father died at age 91, though his mind was gone a couple of years prior. He had a fairly decent policy for a nursing home, but my brother, sister and I just couldn't put him in one. He had the assets to afford 24X7 care under the direct supervision of my sister. My sister had retired, and had moved in with him to help. He had always told us about his nursing home policy, as he wanted to save his assets for his children. But, we decided differently. I just think none of us would have been able to look ourselves in the mirror if we had put him in a nursing home instead of keeping him in his home. Dad is probably POed at us for not using the nursing home policy. Ah well, we all believe we did the right thing for HIM.

LTC is such an expensive proposition, I just don't know what the solution to the incredible cost might be. Certainly a family member can provide an enormous amount of care, but it comes with a price.

My MIL lived with us for the last few years of her life, and it really wore down my wife. We had already discussed the time when she couldn't go up and down the stairs, she would have to go. I just wasn't going to allow MIL to wreck my wife's health (mental and physical) to keep her mother out of a nursing home. Plus, wife deserved to be able to have a full life with our children and grandchildren. Perhaps that sounds selfish, but my wife had always been a doormat for her mother. Wife basically raised her younger siblings, while her mother moved through four bad marriages.

So a word of caution, don't neglect the real and heavy stress of any family member called upon to help. It truly isn't a light burden. though it might seem so at first. The financial costs are high, but the cost to a family member can be just as high, in stress.

Broken Man 1999
Interesting dichotomy in these two stories.

You wouldn't be able to look yourself in the mirror if you put your Dad in a nursing home, but had no problem putting your MIL in one if necessary. Plus, it was important for your wife to have a full life, but not your sister who had to give up part of her life to provide full-time care for your father.

I know all circumstances are different, and your personal stories are helpful so thank you for sharing them. I just found it interesting how the two examples had very different outcomes, with two equally valid reasoning behind them. In one post, you made good solid arguments for both putting a parent in a nursing home, and NOT putting a parent in a nursing home.

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steve roy
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by steve roy » Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:44 am

My grandfather lived to be 95 and said to me: “If I’d have done this right I would have dropped dead at 75.”

My mother (gradpa’s daughter) is now 92 and the last few years have not been pretty: repeated falls, broken bones, mild dementia, hearing loss, the gamut. She planned ahead with a long-term care policy and is well-fixed financially, but the raw human cost of living to a ripe old age has been grim.

It’s a pity humans don’t die in the style of parakeets: singing on your perch one minute: dead on the bottom of your cage the next.

Broken Man 1999
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Wed Apr 25, 2018 11:37 am

HomerJ wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:30 am
Broken Man 1999 wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:47 am
Certainly a sobering article.

My father died at age 91, though his mind was gone a couple of years prior. He had a fairly decent policy for a nursing home, but my brother, sister and I just couldn't put him in one. He had the assets to afford 24X7 care under the direct supervision of my sister. My sister had retired, and had moved in with him to help. He had always told us about his nursing home policy, as he wanted to save his assets for his children. But, we decided differently. I just think none of us would have been able to look ourselves in the mirror if we had put him in a nursing home instead of keeping him in his home. Dad is probably POed at us for not using the nursing home policy. Ah well, we all believe we did the right thing for HIM.

LTC is such an expensive proposition, I just don't know what the solution to the incredible cost might be. Certainly a family member can provide an enormous amount of care, but it comes with a price.

My MIL lived with us for the last few years of her life, and it really wore down my wife. We had already discussed the time when she couldn't go up and down the stairs, she would have to go. I just wasn't going to allow MIL to wreck my wife's health (mental and physical) to keep her mother out of a nursing home. Plus, wife deserved to be able to have a full life with our children and grandchildren. Perhaps that sounds selfish, but my wife had always been a doormat for her mother. Wife basically raised her younger siblings, while her mother moved through four bad marriages.

So a word of caution, don't neglect the real and heavy stress of any family member called upon to help. It truly isn't a light burden. though it might seem so at first. The financial costs are high, but the cost to a family member can be just as high, in stress.

Broken Man 1999
Interesting dichotomy in these two stories.

You wouldn't be able to look yourself in the mirror if you put your Dad in a nursing home, but had no problem putting your MIL in one if necessary. Plus, it was important for your wife to have a full life, but not your sister who had to give up part of her life to provide full-time care for your father.

I know all circumstances are different, and your personal stories are helpful so thank you for sharing them. I just found it interesting how the two examples had very different outcomes, with two equally valid reasoning behind them. In one post, you made good solid arguments for both putting a parent in a nursing home, and NOT putting a parent in a nursing home.
Life is strange. My father had the resources, my MIL was $10,000 in debt when we took her in. Resources equals choices.

And, supported by health aides, my sister simply supervised when he needed a great deal more than simply normal needs. She still had a life. In fact initially her move in helped her immensely as she was living on a tiny bank pension and SS and struggling. Her standard of living and his standard of living both improved when she moved in, he was fine at the time but we had finally persuaded him to stop driving. He had been stopped TWICE by the same deputy for driving really slow on US1. He was trying to find an address to a New Year's Eve party. The deputy was really nice and followed him home both times. The second time the deputy called my sister, and we then decided dad needed more supervision. He was not a happy camper, but we pointed out to him his mobility would still be good with my sister living with him. For the couple of years she lived with him, his mind was fine. It was an unbelievably quick decline, and, thankfully a short time (about six months) before death. Some linger on for years, his was so rapid.

So, yeah, different situations, different outcomes.

Hopefully I won't end up in a nursing home, but, who knows.

Broken Man 1999
“If I cannot drink Bourbon and smoke cigars in Heaven than I shall not go. " -Mark Twain

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by jazman12 » Wed Apr 25, 2018 11:53 am

jhfenton wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:23 am
goblue100 wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:38 am
Take care of yourselves.
Forget planning to die young. My goal is to be the first centenarian to run a marathon. :beer (You can't tell, but that's a toasting-with-green-tea emoji, not the usual beer emoji.) ecco a te! :beer
Act soon... time is running out

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cfs
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by cfs » Wed Apr 25, 2018 12:37 pm

Another good article by Mister Swedroe.

Mister Swedroe is no longer active in this forum, our loss.

Thank you Mister Dave for the link.

Gracias por leer ~cfs~
~ Member of the Active Retired Force since 2014 ~

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shum
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by shum » Wed Apr 25, 2018 2:00 pm

I downloaded both books recommended by Larry. I have rarely regretted following Larry’s advice and expect the two books to be of great value.
-shum

garlandwhizzer
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by garlandwhizzer » Wed Apr 25, 2018 2:06 pm

Excellent article. Thanks for posting, Dave. Sobering to say the least. Likely best when elderly to have on hand considerably more assets/money/income than anticipated in most liability matching income assumptions. Very hard to know years/decades in advance what your financial needs will be, especially in the case of Alzheimer's, stroke, or other debilitating disease that runs a very long and very expensive course.

Garland Whizzer

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by MidFlorida1214 » Wed Apr 25, 2018 3:19 pm

Thanks for a great post. My wife and I are both 66 and each have LTC policies. We also have a financial advisor to handle investments. We have been blessed by my having a generous pension and we have enough resources so that my wife can wait until 70 for Social Security. She does plan on filing a restricted application this year to draw off my social security. If I die first, she will also get part of my pension. Of course one never knows what might happen, but we feel comfortable with our planning and approach. We do try to take care of ourselves.

My wife’s parents are 89 and 91. Both are in excellent health. My wife and I do pay for LTC insurance for her Mom. Her Dad has sufficient assets and a pension. No one in my immediate family has survived past their mid-70’s, so LTC has not been an issue so far.

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by EddyB » Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:08 pm

jhfenton wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:23 am

Forget planning to die young. My goal is to be the first centenarian to run a marathon. :beer (You can't tell, but that's a toasting-with-green-tea emoji, not the usual beer emoji.)
It may be too late!

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fauja_Singh

"[O]n 16 October 2011, Singh became the first 100-year-old to finish a marathon, completing the Toronto Waterfront Marathon in 8:11:06. As it took him over 14 minutes after the gun to cross the starting line, the official time submitted for the age group record will be 8:25:17.

However, Guinness World Records refused to include Singh in its record book because he could not produce his birth certificate to prove his age."

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by jhfenton » Wed Apr 25, 2018 7:31 pm

EddyB wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:08 pm
jhfenton wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:23 am

Forget planning to die young. My goal is to be the first centenarian to run a marathon. :beer (You can't tell, but that's a toasting-with-green-tea emoji, not the usual beer emoji.)
It may be too late!

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fauja_Singh

"[O]n 16 October 2011, Singh became the first 100-year-old to finish a marathon, completing the Toronto Waterfront Marathon in 8:11:06. As it took him over 14 minutes after the gun to cross the starting line, the official time submitted for the age group record will be 8:25:17.

However, Guinness World Records refused to include Singh in its record book because he could not produce his birth certificate to prove his age."
I'll go for whatever the official age-group record is at the time. :beer Who knows what the record will be in 2070.

I was hoping Ed Whitlock would put the records out of reach, but he passed away last year. Ed ran sub-3 hours at 72 and sub-4 hours at 85. (I've only been slightly faster in my 40's than he was in his 70's.)

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by VictoriaF » Wed Apr 25, 2018 8:18 pm

Broken Man 1999 wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 11:37 am

Her standard of living and his standard of living both improved when she moved in, he was fine at the time but we had finally persuaded him to stop driving. He had been stopped TWICE by the same deputy for driving really slow on US1. He was trying to find an address to a New Year's Eve party. The deputy was really nice and followed him home both times. The second time the deputy called my sister, and we then decided dad needed more supervision. He was not a happy camper, but we pointed out to him his mobility would still be good with my sister living with him.
The freedom to move is one of the main reasons I retired in a large city where I can get everywhere without needing to drive. Life in large cities is expensive, and that's why a solid financial base is important. Ironically, many Bogleheads relocate to low cost of living areas even when they could well afford to stay in a city.

The old age is inevitable, but there are some actions you can take to compress your morbidity:
- avoid sugar in any form, avoid processed food, don't snack
- exercise, participate in sports, dance, move around
- get fresh air and sunlight
- have 8 hours of sleep every night (read "Why we sleep" by Matthew Walker to understand the importance of sleep)
- have a purpose, work towards a meaningful project
- have a strong social network

There are no guarantees, but those who aim for the healthiest lifestyle are much more likely to reduce, or avoid, the perils of old age.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Apr 25, 2018 8:26 pm

My grandmother is 91 and my mother is always giving her money. My grandma has said many times "I never thought I would live this long". Not exactly a good retirement plan! And this is from a woman that never had a loan, credit card or checking account in her life. They (my grandparents) paid cash for their home almost 50 years ago. She is in good health too. They saved, but never invested (CDs/MM pretty much). Sad.

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by Beehave » Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:02 pm

snarlyjack wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:25 am
Perhaps my story will help someone & how
it influenced my investing.

I have told this story before but for the new members
I'll tell it again...

My Mom died of a combination of type 1 diabetes.
Her diabetes caused a series of strokes which disabled
her (walking with a walker & cane). Which also caused
dementia (short term memory loss). I was her care taker.
Endless hours with her doctors & hospital. None of this
was good.

But what amazed me is she was "obsessed" with our finances.
She was constantly checking her check book balance (hourly).
She knew she had a life insurance policy & social security
disability was in essence making the life insurance premiums.
She was obsessed with paying the bills (which was good).

She knew she was dying...we had endless conversations on
her life insurance policy. I was the sole beneficiary. She
would tell me...this is your big chance in life don't blow
it. Don't ever spend the principal (only spend the interest).
I was 18/19 years old at the time. I was 20 years old when she died.
The reason social security didn't take a part of the life insurance
is because I was under age 21 ( a minor).

This is what led me to dividend investing. For the quarterly dividends
to help me in life. Some people disagree with the strategy (and
that's ok). But I' am fulfilling my Mom's wishes & keeping my
promise to her of not spending the principal.

What I see is people are coming around to the realities of
life including Larry Swedroe. Their is more to a portfolio
than trying at maximize it. Their is more to life than being
100% tax efficient. Their are people looking down on us from
heaven watching things & watching over us...

Larry Swedroe if your reading this...Thank You for posting
your article. In our numerious conversations I sense your
seeing the bigger picture. Which is good, good for you!
! Snarlyjack, in turn, thank you for posting. Your post reminds me how many years ago, when she was dying, my mom took me to a fancy men's clothing store and bought me an outrageously expensive suit. I was teaching and accustomed to wearing jeans and tees. She said, "you will need this." I was just starting a family and not too long after decided I needed to enter corporate life to sustain my family and was fortunate to have a suit for interviewing. In her way, it was her life insurance legacy for me, and it really helped.

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by Fallible » Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:23 pm

Sobering and necessary, and I’m glad to see Larry’s blog on the subject. The “Hidden Truths” book is probably not one I would choose to read, but there are many others (almost a crowded field now) that I have read and would recommend such as the best seller, Being Mortal, by Atul Gawande, surgeon at Brigham and Women's Hospital and a professor at the Harvard School of Public Health and the Department of Surgery at Harvard Medical School.

Thankfully, more books and blogs are being written now about all aspects of aging and I wish the best of them had been available in the ‘90s when I was the primary caregiver to a parent with Alzheimer’s. I would have better understood the disease and been a more effective caregiver. Now, I read books on aging to be better prepared for my own.
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by CollegePrudens » Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:30 pm

steve roy wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:44 am
It’s a pity humans don’t die in the style of parakeets: singing on your perch one minute: dead on the bottom of your cage the next.
I read this (https://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/17/maga ... -life.html) article in 2015 and it stayed with me. I have a pdf saved for reference and my spouse read it too. It is a long but worthwhile read if you are thinking seriously about this topic.

Not to get too morbid, but my plan is to "go" when the time comes, although my spouse and I are still working on the details. I won't say too much more for fear of violating forum rules.
Live as if you were to die tomorrow; learn as if you were to live forever - Gandhi

heyyou
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by heyyou » Wed Apr 25, 2018 11:12 pm

LTC is such an expensive proposition, I just don't know what the solution to the incredible cost might be.
Medical tourism, take me there then leave me there.

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by ResearchMed » Thu Apr 26, 2018 12:23 am

CollegePrudens wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:30 pm
steve roy wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:44 am
It’s a pity humans don’t die in the style of parakeets: singing on your perch one minute: dead on the bottom of your cage the next.
I read this (https://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/17/maga ... -life.html) article in 2015 and it stayed with me. I have a pdf saved for reference and my spouse read it too. It is a long but worthwhile read if you are thinking seriously about this topic.

Not to get too morbid, but my plan is to "go" when the time comes, although my spouse and I are still working on the details. I won't say too much more for fear of violating forum rules.
Quite a read.
Thank you for posting the link.
(Wish we could discuss more, but... we can't.)

RM
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Derby
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by Derby » Thu Apr 26, 2018 12:45 am

CollegePrudens wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:30 pm
I read this (https://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/17/maga ... -life.html) article in 2015 and it stayed with me. I have a pdf saved for reference and my spouse read it too. It is a long but worthwhile read if you are thinking seriously about this topic.

Not to get too morbid, but my plan is to "go" when the time comes, although my spouse and I are still working on the details. I won't say too much more for fear of violating forum rules.
Thanks for that interesting link.

Along similar lines, I recommend this article from a few years ago: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/ar ... 75/379329/ Why I Hope to Die at 75. (He's a staunch opponent of physician assisted suicide, incidentally.)
Carpe Diem.

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by afan » Thu Apr 26, 2018 4:45 am

My main experience was with one elderly person who planned carefully for the late years. This person shopped extensively for continuing care communities and found one not to far from home. Bought in long before there was any need. Would often have dinner there then return home. Had lots of friends at the community. Gradually spent more time there.

It was hardly a terrible place, used only as a last resort. It was bright, pleasant, clean and we'll maintained. I would always drop in unannounced and always found my friend well cared for. It was built for the elderly so there were no stairs or loose carpets to trip someone. There were lots of staff around and they checked on everyone frequently. They made sure everyone got their meds in the right doses and on time. It was about as pleasant a life as I could imagine for that stage of life. This friend was highly social and being at home with a health aid would have been isolating and miserable.

No worries about what to do if the aid cannot make it in one day, all the staff knew CPR..

One requirement to be happy at home is ease of getting out everyday. Simple when healthy, gets much harder as health declines.

This person had decided that the community was the place to spend the last year's and was right.
We don't know how to beat the market on a risk-adjusted basis, and we don't know anyone that does know either | --Swedroe | We assume that markets are efficient, that prices are right | --Fama

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CollegePrudens
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by CollegePrudens » Thu Apr 26, 2018 8:25 am

Derby wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 12:45 am
Along similar lines, I recommend this article from a few years ago: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/ar ... 75/379329/ Why I Hope to Die at 75. (He's a staunch opponent of physician assisted suicide, incidentally.)
Good read. I saved a pdf for re-reading - the second half of the article in particular needs some pondering on my part (i.e. how far to go beyond setting up a DNR. PS: I have had a DNR in place for several years).

The quote
We want to be remembered as independent, not experienced as burdens.
from the article captures a good portion of how I think about this.
Live as if you were to die tomorrow; learn as if you were to live forever - Gandhi

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by willthrill81 » Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:29 am

When you look at the not-so-distant past, those who weren't able to care for themselves in old age were largely cared for by family members if they were around. When my mother was young, her grandfather lived with them for several years before he passed away. That was just the norm back then. Even now, we have some friends in their late 30s who house the wife's father and care for him.

Personally, I hope to live and die like my paternal great-grandfather. At 93, he still kept what he called a 'garden' but was really 40 acres of various crops. He eventually fell off of his tractor and broke his arm. For the first time in his life, he couldn't move much, and within two weeks his heart just stopped. Every day of his life, he ate homegrown bacon, fatback, and biscuits made with lard and smothered with butter and jelly. :D
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by ebrasmus21 » Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:59 am

jhfenton wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:23 am
goblue100 wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:38 am
Take care of yourselves.
Forget planning to die young. My goal is to be the first centenarian to run a marathon. :beer (You can't tell, but that's a toasting-with-green-tea emoji, not the usual beer emoji.)
Better make that matcha green tea.

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by ebrasmus21 » Thu Apr 26, 2018 10:00 am

willthrill81 wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:29 am
When you look at the not-so-distant past, those who weren't able to care for themselves in old age were largely cared for by family members if they were around. When my mother was young, her grandfather lived with them for several years before he passed away. That was just the norm back then. Even now, we have some friends in their late 30s who house the wife's father and care for him.

Personally, I hope to live and die like my paternal great-grandfather. At 93, he still kept what he called a 'garden' but was really 40 acres of various crops. He eventually fell off of his tractor and broke his arm. For the first time in his life, he couldn't move much, and within two weeks his heart just stopped. Every day of his life, he ate homegrown bacon, fatback, and biscuits made with lard and smothered with butter and jelly. :D
Sounds like he was a great man with an even greater appetite for tasty foods!

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by cinghiale » Thu Apr 26, 2018 1:28 pm

Apropos of the Atlantic article cited upthread, here’s another important contribution to the topic. The title is “How Doctors Die.” This was mentioned in a past thread, but it’s worth highlighting again:

https://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/20/your ... s-die.html
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by CollegePrudens » Thu Apr 26, 2018 2:03 pm

I hadn't read the above article. I have now and it is in my pdf library. For those with continued interest in the topic:
Live as if you were to die tomorrow; learn as if you were to live forever - Gandhi

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by VictoriaF » Thu Apr 26, 2018 3:30 pm

CollegePrudens wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 2:03 pm
I hadn't read the above article. I have now and it is in my pdf library. For those with continued interest in the topic:
You can add to your collection a link to the book referenced in the 2015 article about Sandy Bem,
https://www.peacefulpillhandbook.com/ab ... k-options/

Victoria
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by LuigiLikesPizza » Thu Apr 26, 2018 3:43 pm

My grandmother passed away last evening, at age 96, so this topic is timely and painful for me, having witnessed her sharpest decline over the past 6 years. I would say that once she entered nursing care at age 90, she lost her quality of life, her body kept functioning well after her mind had deserted her. Before age 90, she suffered from an assortment of various health maladies.

Yes, she was physically active and thin all her life and ate from the gardens and farms of her family - not much restaurant or grocery store food. She lived a life of relatively low stress, lots of fresh air/rural living and strong personal and community ties.

Lots of people seem to harbor an illusion of control. It's often just that.

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by CollegePrudens » Thu Apr 26, 2018 3:51 pm

VictoriaF wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 3:30 pm
You can add to your collection a link to the book referenced in the 2015 article about Sandy Bem,
https://www.peacefulpillhandbook.com/ab ... k-options/
Thank you for the handy link. I have been meaning to read some of the even-longer-form content on the topic but hadn't gotten there yet. Perhaps because of the morbidity of the topic. I will now (One has to face the facts sooner or later....)
Live as if you were to die tomorrow; learn as if you were to live forever - Gandhi

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by mlebuf » Thu Apr 26, 2018 5:53 pm

Derby wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 12:45 am

Along similar lines, I recommend this article from a few years ago: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/ar ... 75/379329/ Why I Hope to Die at 75. (He's a staunch opponent of physician assisted suicide, incidentally.)
The author of that essay might want to check with Jack Bogle or Taylor before cashing-in his chips at 75. Just sayin'.
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by palaheel » Thu Apr 26, 2018 6:30 pm

My plan is to hike the Appalachian Trail in my early 80s. I figure I won't make it out of Georgia.
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by Fallible » Thu Apr 26, 2018 7:37 pm

cinghiale wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 1:28 pm
Apropos of the Atlantic article cited upthread, here’s another important contribution to the topic. The title is “How Doctors Die.” This was mentioned in a past thread, but it’s worth highlighting again:
https://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/20/your ... s-die.html
A growing emphasis on palliative care and hospice care rather than chemo, radiation, experimental drugs, etc., in some cases of terminal illness are taken up in (I thought) convincing detail in Atul Gawande's book, Being Mortal, including that of his father, also a doctor.

This NYT article generally follows this line of thought, although Gawande's example of his cancer-stricken father shows that no matter the advantages doctors may have over the rest of us, when it comes to deciding treatments and end-of-life care, they can go through the same gut-wrenching decisions as the rest of us. Gawande is a prominent surgeon and his mother is also a physician, so you had three physicians struggling to make the best decisions. At one point, the three disagree with each other on which specialist should perform a difficult operation and they consult a second specialist who disagrees with the first. The father finally makes the decision, partly for non-medical reasons, and it's the right one. But so many more painful decisions still must be made as his cancer later worsens.
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by mlebuf » Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:13 pm

Another article on how doctors die: http://www.zocalopublicsquare.org/2011/ ... eas/nexus/

Also, my friend Hattie Bryant has written a wonderful book and done a PBS special on how we can manage the final chapter of our lives to make the passage as peaceful and painless as possible: https://www.amazon.com/Ill-Have-My-Way- ... +it+my+way
Best wishes, | Michael | | Invest your time actively and your money passively.

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by bling » Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:33 pm

doesn't medicaid cover long-term care? once you run out of money and have next to no resources, then you can apply to get medicaid.

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by abuss368 » Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:48 pm

A good article indeed. As I get older, I am always looking for ways to simplify our financial and non financial lives.
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by DesertOasis » Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:52 pm

bling wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:33 pm
doesn't medicaid cover long-term care? once you run out of money and have next to no resources, then you can apply to get medicaid.
Right, but you will limit your options to facilities with available medicaid beds at the time that you become eligible.

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by ResearchMed » Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:57 pm

DesertOasis wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:52 pm
bling wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:33 pm
doesn't medicaid cover long-term care? once you run out of money and have next to no resources, then you can apply to get medicaid.
Right, but you will limit your options to facilities with available medicaid beds at the time that you become eligible.
The "trick" is to find a long term care/nursing home/etc., that takes private (full-pay) patients, and then will keep them after switching them to Medicaid when they run out of money.
Needless to say, there are usually some financial requirements so that they know one can pay for 'x' amount of time.
And there may be waiting lists to get into one of these facilities, even as private/full-pay.

Planning ahead helps in so many ways......

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by finite_difference » Thu Apr 26, 2018 10:32 pm

steve roy wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:44 am
My grandfather lived to be 95 and said to me: “If I’d have done this right I would have dropped dead at 75.”

My mother (gradpa’s daughter) is now 92 and the last few years have not been pretty: repeated falls, broken bones, mild dementia, hearing loss, the gamut. She planned ahead with a long-term care policy and is well-fixed financially, but the raw human cost of living to a ripe old age has been grim.

It’s a pity humans don’t die in the style of parakeets: singing on your perch one minute: dead on the bottom of your cage the next.
Perhaps being like the parakeet depends on how you live your life:

“The goal of martial arts is to be healthy while you live and then die quickly. If one is internally strong you will not become ill during your life and when the body is worn down by old age you will die with no lingering illness.” - Kung Fu Master Sun Lu Tang.

I have also read that contrary to young adults’ beliefs, you generally become happier as you grow old, and not the other way around.
The most precious gift we can offer anyone is our attention. - Thich Nhat Hanh

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by EddyB » Thu Apr 26, 2018 11:23 pm

mlebuf wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 5:53 pm
Derby wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 12:45 am

Along similar lines, I recommend this article from a few years ago: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/ar ... 75/379329/ Why I Hope to Die at 75. (He's a staunch opponent of physician assisted suicide, incidentally.)
The author of that essay might want to check with Jack Bogle or Taylor before cashing-in his chips at 75. Just sayin'.
Critics of the lottery should really talk to the winners.

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by VictoriaF » Fri Apr 27, 2018 6:57 am

LuigiLikesPizza wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 3:43 pm
My grandmother passed away last evening, at age 96, so this topic is timely and painful for me, having witnessed her sharpest decline over the past 6 years. I would say that once she entered nursing care at age 90, she lost her quality of life, her body kept functioning well after her mind had deserted her. Before age 90, she suffered from an assortment of various health maladies.

Yes, she was physically active and thin all her life and ate from the gardens and farms of her family - not much restaurant or grocery store food. She lived a life of relatively low stress, lots of fresh air/rural living and strong personal and community ties.

Lots of people seem to harbor an illusion of control. It's often just that.
Sorry about your loss.

Your grandmother's story supports the idea that a healthy lifestyle increases longevity. With all her maladies, your grandmother lived to an admirable age of 96!

And while the illusion of control is a cognitive bias, it is a healthy bias. When you feel in control you are more optimistic and happy, and happiness is one of the strongest health enhancers.

Victoria
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by international001 » Fri Apr 27, 2018 7:12 am

CollegePrudens wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 8:25 am
Derby wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 12:45 am
Along similar lines, I recommend this article from a few years ago: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/ar ... 75/379329/ Why I Hope to Die at 75. (He's a staunch opponent of physician assisted suicide, incidentally.)
Good read. I saved a pdf for re-reading - the second half of the article in particular needs some pondering on my part (i.e. how far to go beyond setting up a DNR. PS: I have had a DNR in place for several years).

The quote
We want to be remembered as independent, not experienced as burdens.
from the article captures a good portion of how I think about this.
TWEET OF THE MONTH
My guess is Zeke Emanuel will change his mind about no medical care after 75 when he has grandkids.

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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by ResearchMed » Fri Apr 27, 2018 7:15 am

international001 wrote:
Fri Apr 27, 2018 7:12 am
CollegePrudens wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 8:25 am
Derby wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 12:45 am
Along similar lines, I recommend this article from a few years ago: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/ar ... 75/379329/ Why I Hope to Die at 75. (He's a staunch opponent of physician assisted suicide, incidentally.)
Good read. I saved a pdf for re-reading - the second half of the article in particular needs some pondering on my part (i.e. how far to go beyond setting up a DNR. PS: I have had a DNR in place for several years).

The quote
We want to be remembered as independent, not experienced as burdens.
from the article captures a good portion of how I think about this.
TWEET OF THE MONTH
My guess is Zeke Emanuel will change his mind about no medical care after 75 when he has grandkids.

— @jonathanalter
Also, not all 75 year olds are in the same "condition", health or otherwise.

We all age a bit "differently".

RM
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by Top99% » Fri Apr 27, 2018 7:27 am

Thanks for posting this Dave and it has been interesting to hear the stories of other Bogleheads. My wife "retired" to look after her parents in 2006. They had zero assets beyond SS and my FIL had Diabetes so I can vouch for the expenses and mental toll on my wife. My MIL has had Alzheimer's severe enough that she needs 24x7 care for 4+ years now so I can vouch for the $60K / year expense that can go on. The non-financial toll on my wife has been far harder. To me the main takeaway is one needs to very carefully consider getting the right balance between running out of healthy time and running out of money when deciding when to retire. My parents seem to have erred slightly on the side of running out of money but we will see. There are always risks and luck always plays a part in our lives.
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by IlliniDave » Fri Apr 27, 2018 7:39 am

I've concluded my choices are basically to work until I'm as close to death as possible, or accept retiring with the risk that if I draw the short straw, healthcare at the end might drain my assets.

Another way to look at those numbers is that on average retirees spend an amount on healthcare equal to about half their SS benefit over the same timeframe. It's somewhat more for early retirees. So in my planning I treat SS as a healthcare reimbursement stream, and have sized other assets to work with other income sources to cover non-medical living expenses with some margin. As long as things are going well healthcare-wise, SS will be set aside to pay for future old-age specific costs.

As articles like this like to "remind" us, even that may not be enough, but I don't want to eventually get wheeled away from my desk feet-first with a sheet over my head because I spent my life wringing my hands over a flock of black swans. If my assets are being depleted because of illness, I'll be to ill to be out "enjoying" them anyway.

A caveat to that is that I am single while doing this planning. For a married couple the trade space is a little more complicated.
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Re: Larry Swedroe: Financial Perils Of Old Age

Post by CollegePrudens » Fri Apr 27, 2018 8:56 am

mlebuf wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:13 pm
Another article on how doctors die: http://www.zocalopublicsquare.org/2011/ ... eas/nexus/
I believe that this is the same article as the one I had posted above (the one that had gone viral). I.e. different URL same content. Given its past popularity, it is likely stored in many locations
mlebuf wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:13 pm
Also, my friend Hattie Bryant has written a wonderful book and done a PBS special on how we can manage the final chapter of our lives to make the passage as peaceful and painless as possible: https://www.amazon.com/Ill-Have-My-Way- ... +it+my+way
FYI - this book is currently out of stock at Amazon, although 3rd party copies are available. I put it on my reading list and will look for it in the local library. Thanks for the pointer.
Live as if you were to die tomorrow; learn as if you were to live forever - Gandhi

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