December came and went, the Mayans were wrong, the world didn’t end. But heading into 2013, the dire news for seniors living on a fixed income just got started.
A year ago last October seniors got good news when the Social Security cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) was a robust 3.6 percent and Medicare Part B increases were barely noticeable. This October? Not so much.
The Social Security COLA was a paltry 1.7 percent – an average $21 per month for individuals and $34 per month for couples. Considerably less than what seniors expected, and needed, heading into 2013.
Medicare Part B premiums for most of Medicare beneficiaries will increase $5, from $99.90 per month to $104.90 in 2013, but deductibles will increase by $7 to $147. For some, this can wipe out the small COLA increase.
And for those retirees who enjoy the monthly conversations with their friendly bank teller – well, those will soon be but a memory as the U.S. Treasury stops mailing paper checks in March 2013. If you or a senior you care about isn’t already banking online, it’s time to get set up.
For those of us still paying into Social Security, the news isn’t much better. Workers will pay 4.2% more of their income and almost 10 million people will pay higher taxes as a result of the increase in the taxable minimum.
The bottom line is this: if you or your aging parent(s) are not taking money management seriously, 2013 may be a good time to start. Whether you’re already living on a fixed income, or simply care about someone else who is, it costs you nothing to have a confidential conversation about how personal money management with DL MoneyMatters can help:
- Budget for expected expenses
- Set up online banking for seniors
- Create a personal financial money management plan
- Say good-bye to the stress associated with bill paying
If you know someone who might sleep better knowing that a trusted, bonded, professional is guiding them through the 2013 maze of changes, call Diana at (513) 300-5141 or drop us a note.