So my grandma has always been bad with money. She’s 83 years old and bought a home wayyy back for $15k. Today it’s worth $310k. She saw rates were low back at start of 2021 so she refinanced at 3% (Like 3.05% I think..).
She was like “This is free money I have to take it” and of course, all the rest of the broke family supported this idea and followed her path besides my Mom. (And myself)
She pulled out $200k from her mortgage and now has a payment a little over $850/mo..
Fast forward a year and half later, it’s all fucking gone but $12,000. $180k+, all of it, Gone.
I have literally 0 idea where it all went. There’s been zero home renovations or cars or trips or anything so I really have no idea but it’s all gone.
She makes $2000/mo from social security and half of that goes to her mortgage.
I’m pretty sure it went to all shopping as she has tons of clothes and new pots and kitchen shit. Today she was stressing because “I have to get to Macy’s today. It’s 30% off if you spend $200. I’d hate to make that go to waste”…. Grandma, you’re not saving money, you’re spending money lol
Anyway, she’s getting older and can’t really do much around the house. She’s forgetting a lot of things, falling here and there, and is overall lonely so it’s time for her to go into a retirement home. Retirement Homes are $5k – $10k a month based on what we see.. If she had her house paid off and it was rented, that’d be an easy solution, but there’s no money there.
Does anybody have any solutions here or advice? Somehow the family has said I should pay for her bills because “I got it” but that’s simply not happening..
*Edit. Sorry, this post is half, me ranting, and half asking for advice
Lots of broke family members thought it was a good idea? I think I can guess where the money went.
200k is a lot of clothes and pots. Can you make sure it really truly is gone or if someone misappropriated it?
Look into Medicaid for nursing homes and what they will cover, and what assets she can have. It may be worth paying for a consultation with a professional on that.
It sounds like if she sells the house, she can clear almost $100k. If she goes to a retirement home that costs $5k, and has SS pay $2k of that at least buys her a few years of payments.
I must be missing something here:
Gma has house worth $310k, mortgage of $200k
Gma has to head to retirement home
Sell house, mortgage is paid off, remaining money is used to cover retirement home costs, until Medicare kicks in – did I miss something?
To keep it short, I think grandma ends up losing the home to bills and goes in a state run hospital. OP, you are not obligated to pay for her medical care.
I would suggest that you try to help manage whatever she has left to extend her meager savings and keep your finances completely separate to avoid any family talk of misappropriation. Then when time comes that she has no money and needs to go into a state funded home, you take the time out of your life to visit her, bring her small things (that you pay for) she enjoys and keep showing her her favorite things/photos/videos. Over and over and over again.
Good luck, it is tough, but in the end all you can do is help make her life a tiny bit better. Edit for clarity
You’re definitely not responsible.
1)To be sure. Check all bank transactions and withdrawals to be sure she didn’t fall for a scam somewhere. If she did,
Maybe there’s something that can be done.
2) Sell anything of value that she might have bought. It’s unlikely it’s gone all to pots, pans and clothes. Unless they’re super duper designer and diamond plated.
Maybe she has some small but valuable jewelry she acquired.
Sidenote: Don’t take inheritance without checking you’re not taking on debts.
Look for an aging resource through your city or county. They’ll be far more helpful in navigating medicaid/program supported assisted living and walking through what is available where you live and also providing resources to keep grandma safe while she is living alone.
Caring for an aging loved one is rough. You owe no one a penny of financial support and don’t let family guilt you into thinking that you do.
You need to consult an asset protection and estate planning attorney to see what steps can be taken to protect assets such as a home while getting her eligible for Medicaid. Her primary residence shouldn’t count as an asset and what else does she have besides $12k cash?
She is going to have to sell her house and someone manage her money on a plan to “spend down to Medicare”. She will not qualify for a while since she has assets. There are senior advising entities that can help you with this plan.
I’m not an expert, but I’m pretty confident that it wouldn’t matter if the house/property was paid off, or not.
I actually live with my grandmother. Similar situation; she’s older and I’m here to take the mantle and be here for her should she fall, etc.
However, we have 1 current concern; which is should she be homed tomorrow, I’d be out a home that’s been paid off for 20+ years. What happens (in the states, that is) when she goes to a home, the first thing the feds do is start seizing assets. She can’t simply “give” me the property, I would have to pay a “fair market value” in order to prevent this from happening. Again, I’m not a trained professional, but we have nurses in the family, so I’m not worried about her ending up in a home.
I think the biggest problem you’re experiencing started when she took out the mortgage. My grandmother tried to talk some family into something similar some time ago, but I nipped that in the bud. She’s content “saving money” with her QVC deals, but I do my best to leave it at that. I’d rather her have 2 maxed out credit cards than to have her try and get “free money”.
Not sure if this helpful, or not, but I don’t know of many options you, your grandmother, and your family have.
You know you can still rent the property even if it was mortgaged right? Well you’d make $850 less per month because of the mortgage, but you could still rent it out to help with the nursing home situation.
Well go through her finances and find where it all went. Unless she pulled out a suitcase full of cash, there is a trail.
I’m new to this, how do you refinance a home if it’s fully paid off?
My advice is to contact an eldercare social worker and family eldercare attorney. The SW can assist you(r family) locate resources for grandma and the folks that provide direct support that could help delay entrance into assisted living. The attorney will help establish a plan to manage grandma’s money, whether it is a spend down, a protected annuity, gifting, etc., the attorney can help protect grandma’s assets as bst as possible. The social worker I engaged charged me fairly, and made a world of difference. The attorney helped us divide my parents assets up to protect my dad, and qualify my mom for medicaid. The remaining funds are clearly sufficient for the professional services you need. Good luck.
You sell the house, pay off the mortgage, and hope there’s enough to keep grandma setup in the retirement home. At least that’s the only idea I have since there’s no hope of paying off the new mortgage. You need to see the financials before anything.
It sounds as though your grandma is suffering from memory loss and someone took advantage of her. I would ask her where the money went. If she is being scammed by fake charities or lending to greedy relatives, I would find a way to take over her finances. We had to get an older relative a new phone because scammers were calling her. It might be time for her to move to assisted living. That means you’ll need help from some type of senior services to figure out how to pay for it.
She’s 85… I hope she had a blast spending it. Can’t take it with her
You need to chat with a few elder care attorneys and go with the one that’s the most helpful
You need to get access to her checking account and look at all the statements for the past several years. Find out WHERE all that money went. I find it very hard to believe that she managed to spend 200k in a year… someone must have taken advantage of her or scammed her. Possibly even a family member.
Get power of attorney. Sell the house. Use the proceeds to pay for the nursing home for grandma.
Keep your finance’s seperate. You are not obligated to pay for any of it. If grandma goes into a home, Sell the house and whatever is left after that can be used to pay for the nursing home. Basically you and your mom just need to accept that there will be no inheritance and that you will have to wash your hands of anything to do with the estate. Sometimes its best financially to just sit by the sidelines.
She will need to apply to Medicare. If she has no money then it won’t really matter, but any assets will be used up before Medicare kicks in. It will limit options, and some Medicare places are not as nice as private ones.
Advice for grandma – idk, probably none.
Advice for you – stay away from this mess.
Honestly, I fail to see the problem here…
She’s 83 years old, why should she keep a paid off house until her death just so little sally and timmy can have a windfall after her funeral? I see absolutely nothing wrong with taking the cash and enjoying herself while she still can. Personally, I would have found a better way to enjoy $200k than 30% off pots and pans at Macy’s, but to each their own…
As to her nursing home costs, medicaid should pick up the tab. Unless grandma has assets she’s been hiding from you, it sounds like she would qualify. It’s not on you to pay for her nursing home, so don’t pitch in a cent when medicare already exists to pay her way.
You need to figure out where the money went. Bank statements/online banking. Have to follow the money. I find it hard to believe she spent it shopping.
Does she have any other assets? Her home would be considered her primary residence and would be protected from Medicare. Any other assets would have to go towards care. Otherwise, if she only has the house, apply for Medicare to help pay for care.
Sell the house, use the proceeds remaining after paying the mortgage off to pay for a home until that runs out then she probably goes into a state run retirement home im guessing.
If I had to take a guess I’d say financial elder abuse by other family members, I’d put money on that.
A bit of a side issue but: you’re blaming your grandmother (and the rest of your family) for being “dumb”. I want to point out that they’re being taken advantage of by unscrupulous lenders who are misleading them. The elderly are particularly vulnerable–an early stage of cognitive decline is to become gullible. Your grandmother has likely fallen prey to this. It was ubiquitous with the mortgage crash in 2008–so many, many people refinancing their homes to get quick bucks to make them feel wealthy despite not being so, with the assumption that their house will go up in value and they’ll never have to pay off their loan with actual money from their wages. And then they lost their homes. My point is: blame the real bad actor here, not your grandmother. She’s elderly, probably gullible, and certainly not as knowledgeable about the repercussions of her loan as was the person who talked her into the loan. As long as we blame the victims of scams and the unscrupulous and not the scammers and the unscrupulous, we’re saying the liars and cheats who are taking advantage of people did nothing wrong, it’s the people they lied to and misled who should have known better.
If she’s lonely now, just wait until she gets into assisted living…
I wonder if it’s possible to take control of her finances instead of putting her into assisted living? If someone can help monitor her money and give her an allowance, she might be able to live on her own a little bit longer.
Fortunately, foreclosure proceedings usually take a long time to really get going. So she’s got that going for her.
She’s 83. Let her enjoy her money while she can.
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