Monday, April 11, 2011

5 Tips for Overcoming the Bite of The Sandwich Generation

Do you find yourself planning for retirement, saving for college and helping aging parents all at the same time? If so, welcome to The Sandwich Generation.

Because I know that it can be a challenging time in life, here are five tips to help ease the burden of multiple financial goals.

1. Keep separate accounts. Your various financial goals will have different time frames and cash flow requirements. Investing money in separate accounts for each objective will help you select suitable investments for each one.

2. Look into financial aid. You may not have to cover all your children’s college expenses yourself. A range of financial aid options are available and some may suit your family. Estimating the aid you’ll receive will help you plan for your share of the costs.

3. Explore options for aging parents. Planning for your parents’ needs can pay off both financially and emotionally. Ideally you can discuss options while they are still healthy and able to work with you toward meeting their care needs.

4. Maintain control of debt. Consider what you really need rather than what you want when making major purchasing decisions requiring long-term financial commitments.

5. Take care of yourself first. You can finance a college education, but you can’t put your retirement on a credit card. Make sure your retirement plan remains a high priority among your financial obligations. If you need some help in that area, consult a financial advisor to explore your retirement planning progress and make sure your plan is on track.

Renée A. Hanson, CFP®, CEP®, CDFA™, CFS, is a private wealth advisor with Hanson, Ayala & Associates, a private wealth advisory practice of Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. Her passion is in helping women achieve their dreams and financial goals, regardless of life’s many obstacles. Renée is licensed/registered to do business with U.S. residents only in the states of AZ, CA, CO, GA, IA, IL, MI, MN, MT, NH, NJ, NM, NY, OH, PA, SC, TX, VA, WA, WI. Please visit: to learn more.

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