Regularly $4.99, sale price $2.49
Regularly $4.99, sale price $2.49
This time of year we focus on celebrating the holidays but sadly, it's also a time when scammers are doing their best to bilk Boomers, as well as others. Everyone is vulnerable to scamming during the holidays since we tend to be distracted and let our guard down. This is an especially trying holiday time with the pandemic, because many of us have restricted our travel and we are likely to stay home rather than visit family and friends. That means you may be spending more time online -- so you are more prone to scams. You also may be answering calls on your phone more often, even from phone numbers you don't recognize.
Unfortunately, online and phone scammers alike are becoming much more sophisticated. They are posing as charities, banks, government agencies, shipping companies and more. For example, emails, websites and text messages might look completely legitimate, but they could be fake. (Have you gotten any of those "shipping notice" texts recently? That's one of the latest scams.) The same is true of phone calls that seem to come from banks, Medicare, the FBI or the IRS.
To keep you from turning your holidays into "scam-adays," I recommend that you read an informative series of articles, "Scams & Older Adults: What to Do?" You'll find it on an excellent website for seniors, Tech-enhanced Life, here: https://www.techenhancedlife.com/articles/scams-older-adults-what-do
This series of four articles, written by a retired psychologist, contains valuable information and tips:
Part 1: Scams & Older Adults. Why older people are especially vulnerable to scams – it’s not just because they are less tech-savvy than younger generations.
Part 2: Forewarning. How scams generally work, what their objectives may be, and ways to recognize signs and situations that increase your vulnerability. (Includes lots of actual examples.)
Part 3: Forearming. Ways to reduce your vulnerability to scams and ways to help yourself and your loved-ones to remain scam-free by following some basic safety rules.
Part 4: Taking control - When you need to step in. What you can do if you need to step in directly to help a loved-one manage their affairs to avoid exploitation. (Your parents or older family members are even more susceptible to scams than you are.)
Consider this my holiday gift to you -- so you'll be able to celebrate the holidays without getting scammed!
Many Boomers are "retired," but those in the know don't think of it that way. Instead, they treat retirement as if it is a small business they run. Doing so is something Boomers either learn from running a business previously or from meeting with a financial adviser. Either way, it makes a lot of sense to treat retirement like a business. Here are some of the ways it will make a difference:
These are just a few examples of ways in which you can treat retirement like a small business. If you've done any kind of personal budgeting, you're already off to a good start. Most of what I've described here can easily be done with spreadsheet software. It just takes a bit of time and financial discipline. If you are unfamiliar with basic accounting, there are plenty of sources available via a simple internet search. Numerous personal finance apps could be of assistance, and your financial adviser could also provide valuable guidance.
The end of the year is an ideal time to think ahead and set up a simple system so you can treat your retirement like a small business in 2021.