The Six Step Plan


Growing older has its moments. Those of us who are called “baby boomers” will have to look after our parents, pay for college, and plan our retirement all at the same time. This book provides a roadmap for both adult children and senior citizens to use in planning for an uncertain future. The roadmap was developed based on my own experiences and hours of discussions with social workers, attorneys, and physicians. For an older person, financial, emotional, and legal issues are intertwined. How many people, if they were being completely honest, could answer the following questions in a definitive fashion?

  • Who is going to take care of you in your later years?
  • How long will your money last if you need long-term care?
  • What if your “go-to person” lives out of state?
  • Are all your legal documents up to date and easy to locate?
  • Who knows what drugs you’re taking and the names of all your physicians?
  • Would you have to move out of your house if you have an impairment?

The six-step plan answers these questions and many more, but most importantly it can ensure that your entire family is on the same page — before a crisis hits. These six steps together will provide an assessment of your particular situation and can be taken in any order, as long as they all are executed.

Here are the six steps:

  • Personal Information Inventory
  • Retirement Income Projection and Stress Test
  • Family Dynamics Survey
  • Estate Plan Review
  • Health Risk Assessment
  • Aging Strategy Design

I’ll address each of the six steps separately later in the book, but first, some groundwork.