Talking to your children about tough topics like money can be stressful – whether they’re kids, or grown adults. That’s why it’s no surprise that a new study held by Fidelity Investments found that 64% of parents and children can’t agree about when to have conversations about financial preparedness. According to the study, the majority of parents would rather discuss financial security and health care plans after retirement, while their children would much rather have the discussion far ahead of time before any potential health problems occur.
Fortunately, the study did find that the majority (75%) of parents and adult children agree it is important to have open and honest conversations about such financial topics like estate planning, wills, eldercare, and retirement expenses. However, 40% of parents have not had detailed discussions about these topics yet and only about half of parents consider themselves comfortable talking about their personal finance situations with their children.
Avoiding these frank conversations can have real repercussions. Waiting too long to discuss affairs can not only cause stress, but it could leave a gap between what parents actually have saved for retirement and elder health care and what children assume exists. Plus, unanswered questions could leave real trouble in the ways of funeral costs, will disbursement and eldercare obligations if children are kept in the dark.
It may seem difficult or upsetting, but initiating family discussions earlier rather than later can have not only financial benefits, but emotional ones, too. Establishing early who should be involved in important conversations, what everyone’s role is for future situations, and developing a sense of preparedness will keep everyone feeling secure and ready for whatever will come later.
Have you had the financial future talk with your parents or children? How did you go about it? Tell us below in the comments.
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