Are Medical Credit Cards Unhealthy for Your Finances?

You need some expensive medical care yet don’t have the insurance or money to pay for it. Should you use a medical credit card that’s pitched at some doctors’ offices? A new report by the nonprofit Consumer Action warns that some of these cards can be unhealthy for your finances. They usually offer a zero percent introductory rate, though after that period, card terms can vary greatly. The problem is that these terms often are difficult to uncover. So patients …

Silence Could Be Costly in Family Financial Planning

Parents and their adult children say they want to have honest conversations about finances and retirement issues, but they just don’t agree on when to talk, according to a survey released today by Fidelity Investments. And when these discussions do eventually occur, they often don’t get down to the details needed for proper financial planning, the Boston-based investment firm found. Lauren Brouhard, senior vice president of retirement at Fidelity, urges families to bite the bullet and talk – before parents retire …

Most Medicare Recipients Have Modest Incomes, Kaiser Reports

If you’ve ever wondered about the finances of people receiving federally funded Medicare benefits - are they wealthy, poor or somewhere in between? - a new chart provides some clues. This interactive infographic, released by the Kaiser Family Foundation, takes into account assets, income, age and more as it delivers a financial picture of the estimated 52.4 million people on Medicare. The graphic also includes projected data for 2030, so you can see how current recipients measure up against future beneficiaries. >> Sign up for the AARP Money …

How to Retire the Cheapskate Way

Jeff Yeager – aka “the Ultimate Cheapskate” – is AARP’s savings expert and host of the weekly Web show The Cheap Life, produced by AARP and airing on YouTube. He’s also the author of four popular books about frugal living, including his most recent, How to Retire the Cheapskate Way. Jeff will be a guest on AARP Live on Thursday, June 19, so we sat down with him in advance to chat about retirement planning and living, cheapskate-style. What does it mean …

Free Resources for Managing Your 401(k)

Need help with retirement? The do-it-yourself investor can find plenty of online resources to help with retirement and other types of financial planning. Fidelity Investments in Boston offers a variety of tools, including some to help you devise a plan to pay off debt or decide whether to convert to a Roth IRA. Baltimore-based T. Rowe Price’s Retirement Income Calculator can project how much you will need in retirement vs. how much you will have, while Valley Forge, Pa.-based Vanguard’s Retirement …

New Survey: Intergenerational Family Connections Matter

The Beatles might have gotten by with a little help from their friends, but I couldn’t do it without my family - especially when it comes to caregiving for my parents. Knowing my sisters will help is invaluable, whether I’m having trouble coordinating Dad’s care and my work schedule or I’m simply feeling tired and overwhelmed. We support Dad and each other through this difficult time. I’m not alone in my reliance on family. According to a new report released today …