If you’ve recently identified that your long-distance loved one has reached the point of needing more time and care from you, then you have some things to think about. Living in another state—or even an hour away—not only makes caregiving extremely difficult, but it can also lead to a lot of stress and guilt.
Rather than getting overwhelmed by these decisions, it’s best practice to meet with concerned family members, think through all of the options, and come up with a plan that will benefit everyone. Here are some tips from Martin Lawyers on how to navigate the process:
Consider Various Living Arrangements
One of the first decisions you will need to make will be where you or your loved one will live. Do you need to move closer to your loved one or even move into their home? Is your loved one interested in moving in with you, and are they well enough to make the transition?
Financially, these are perhaps the best options, not to mention they could be much more comfortable for your loved one. But don’t count out other options, such as having your loved one move into a senior living community or nursing home. Speak with your loved one about where they would like to live out their golden years, and speak with their doctors as well.
Rent Before You Buy
Another option is to help your loved one downsize to a smaller home. This could eliminate the stress of home maintenance, make it easier to keep their home clean, and help combat some of the loneliness they may be feeling.
That said, acquiring a new home and moving your loved one into it could be a stressful venture. Make a plan and delegate responsibilities to other family members if possible; this might include selling their home, finding a new home, and relocating your loved one’s belongings.
Even if it is decided that your loved one will move into a new home, it doesn’t mean they have to buy it. With a little research, you can find an apartment or small rental house that can accommodate their needs. This also applies if you choose to get a new home to be closer to your loved one.
Opting to rent can relieve a lot of the stress that comes with relocation. Research apartments in the area you or your loved one are moving to in order to compare prices and amenities to determine the best fit. For example, if you are renting in Fort Worth, you will see that a one-bedroom unit is usually between $400 and $900 a month and that Fort Worth is a huge metropolitan area with lots of popular areas.
Maintain Their Home
If home maintenance is on your agenda as a caregiver, don’t try to do everything yourself. Get the family involved, and use the skill sets of everyone willing to help. Also, consider hiring professionals for certain tasks; it may cost more, but the stress relief can prove well worth the investment.
For example, if the windows in your loved one’s home are letting in cold air, look for local pros for window repair. Going through sites like Angi will connect you with a wide selection of professional services, and you can read online reviews and get quotes from multiple candidates.
Get Help on the Legal Front
Finally, if you are planning on taking on the responsibilities of helping a loved one through their golden years, it is important to have all your legal paperwork in order.
Medical and Financial Powers of Attorney are important to allow you to make certain decisions on your loved one’s behalf. Having a Last Will & Testament or Medicaid Plan in place can be invaluable as well.
Martin Lawyers has a well-established reputation for guiding seniors and their caregivers through estate planning and Medicaid applications.
Caring for a senior loved one is an honor, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Get with your family to discuss living arrangements, and enlist professionals to help when necessary. A lot of the stress and anxiety will dissipate once you establish a plan of action and start delegating tasks.
Do you need estate planning services or assistance with your Medicaid application? Contact Martin Lawyers today! Also check out agingwellness.org for great tips related to seniors and senior living from Hazel Bridges, who co-wrote this article.