Financial Planning As A Family Caregiver

Katie Horton
Katie Horton

Certified Financial Planner Katie Horton of Morrow talks about all things financial and retirement planning.

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Podcast Transcript

February 2, 2023
Please note: This transcript was computer generated and might contain errors.

Katie Horton:  Yeah. So my name is Katie Horton. I am a financial planner and have been a financial planner for over 10 years now. And I really feel like my job is to help people understand and improve their finances. I really have a passion for helping people find freedom in their life, and I can't think of a better place to do that than with your finances, right? If you have

Katie Horton:  If you improve your finances, it it provides more freedom, just in every other aspect of your life.

Katie Wilkinson: Yeah, I love that. I mean I Think nothing causes me more stress than finances or not finances, but like, feeling out of control of my, of my finances. And so that makes a ton of sense.

Katie Horton: Totally. Yeah.

Katie Wilkinson: Obviously, you have a long history of working in finance and personal finance, can you share a little bit about the founding story and mission of morrow?

Katie Horton:  Absolutely. So, obviously, during the pandemic. We saw a lot of different holes in many different things in our society. And one of those holes was the financial strain that most Americans feel really on a day-to-day basis. The old way of doing finances. I think just hasn't worked for most of Americans, right? There's

Katie Horton:  Either their doing guesswork and trying to put things together and hoping that it works out, okay? In the end or you know some sort of do-it-yourself there may be getting financial advice from their uncle or maybe from an insurance salesman. That's selling them. Things that maybe they do or don't need. Right. And tomorrow saw an opportunity here to really help alleviate that financial strain, that a lot of Americans are feeling. So that's kind of how Morrow got started. And really the mission of morrow is to improve the financial help of those everyday individuals, right? We want to provide the resources, we want to help improve knowledge so that people have what they need. So that they can Make wise financial decisions and improve their financial help.


Katie Wilkinson: Yeah, that's awesome. And I'm hoping you can share a little bit about what makes Morrow, you know, different from other financial advisors

Katie Horton:  Yeah. So I've worked with a lot of different financial advisors throughout my career. I even owned my own practice for a while and I would say one of the biggest differences is really who we're trying to target who were really trying to help here, right? We're trying to help the people that honestly Most other financial advisors ignore you know, because either they they don't have the assets to be able to pay the high fees or like I mentioned earlier. Maybe there's salespeople that are trying to get you to buy products so that they can get a commission off of it. We don't do any selling, you know, we really are sitting on the same side of the table as the people that were trying to help. And yeah we're just focusing on it on a totally different demographic than a lot of the other financial advisors are that better out there.

Katie Wilkinson: Obviously finances are a stress for people and can you talk a little bit in your personal experience or at morrow, you know what are some of the biggest financial obstacles? You see and clients or people you've talked to when it comes to their financial success.

The biggest obstacles to financial success

Katie Horton: honestly, a lot of people In all of us we don't know what we don't know, right? And so there's this element of financial knowledge that a lot of people just don't have here a lot from my clients. I'm just doing it the way I've always done it or the way I thought it should be done, but once they start improving that financial knowledge. It's like Oh There's a totally better way of doing this, that I just didn't know. And I honestly didn't know to question what I was doing, because

Katie Horton:  I didn't know that. I should question it where I didn't really know what to question, right? So it's it's really helping people improve their financial knowledge. The other thing I would say is honestly emotions, money is incredibly emotional. And, you know, especially for, for caregivers, right? They have a lot of stress in their life and often money. With with everyone is use as a coping mechanism, right? And I'm not a psychologist. I'm not going to go into that but I think often we use money as a coping mechanism and that

Katie Horton:  Often, we'll mess up a lot of our, our plans that we put in place, right? Because we aren't expecting that. Oh, I'm so stressed out. I'm gonna go by myself this or I, I can't make dinner tonight, we're eating out or whatever it is. We kind of can use money as a, as a coping mechanism and those emotions kind of just get in the way they make us feel totally overwhelmed and it's I can't even deal with that, right? Going on the back burner and then the back burners forgotten about and before, you know it there's a huge mess that you can no longer ignore but you you don't know how to deal with it, right? There's there's just so much emotions that are involved in this and so I would say those are the probably the biggest obstacles that I see that get in the way of people, really finding financial success.

Katie Wilkinson: I imagine the emotional one is a big one and I was about to ask you, you know what, how do you like combat this emotions these emotions and I Maybe am gonna, you know, lead this question here and you can tell me otherwise if there's other ways to combat all the emotional, you know, pressure of finance. But I guess sort of I would imagine one of the ways to get out of this emotional state is by creating a budget and and there's probably million other things but I guess if we could just start with the basics like how does someone create a budget specifically with care related costs in mind?

How to create budget with care-related costs in mind

Katie Horton: Absolutely. It's it's tough and budgets, honestly. They, they take time and as I've been thinking about this caregiver community, Time is not something that's abundant right? There's so many other demands on their time and it's If I told you, you have to track every single thing that you spend and write it all down and put it in the spreadsheet or whatever you're gonna check out and say. Yeah, right. Katie like, there's no way I'm gonna do this. so, What I recommend is breaking it down into a much simpler process. It it definitely takes some effort, right? I'm not going to tell you that this will just like magically happen while you're asleep.

Katie Horton:  But hopefully this process is simple enough that it can at least get you started. So the first step is really understanding the money that's coming in. Right? What paychecks income? What is all the money that's coming in, right? And hopefully, that won't be too difficult for you to figure out. Step two is, What are your payments going out? So this is everything from your rent or mortgage utilities cell phone bills, medical supplies, you know, care costs that that you're paying consist Leon. The basis and so maybe make a list of those things. Make a list, write down the amount. And basically, then you can just subtract your income, minus these payments. And what you have left over, is what I call your trade-off money. This is what you get to choose, how you spend it, right? And this may be


Katie Horton:  You may spend some of this towards reaching your goals, right? Okay. I want to save more for retirement where I want to pay down my debt, or I want to live a little bit nicer and treat myself every so often because Life is difficult right now. And so I want some of this trade-off money to go towards just my improving my living costs. Obviously, in those payments, we didn't include groceries and gas and those types of things. So you'll want to make sure that that's accounted for as you're doing this. But really once you get to that, what is that amount that you can live off of? Again, I'm not going to ask you to track everything but two ways that I found that are pretty helpful for people are one, either get that amount out in cash and that's what you have to spend or cash. Obviously, isn't is an ideal for most people. It's really a pain in the butt to go in when you're buying gas to have to go in, right? It's much easier to describe the card so use just one card.

Katie Horton:  Right. If you just have one card that you put all of that on, it's super easy to just go online and check what your balance is and you can kind of see pretty quickly. How much you're spending again? Keeping that? That one. Simple. Number in mind for how much you have,

Katie Wilkinson: Budgeting with inconsistent income.

How to budget with inconsistent income

Katie Horton: Yeah, absolutely. Actually one of my best friends. She just lost her mom. She had been a caregiver for three and a half years and just three weeks ago. Her mom passed away, and her husband is an artist. So, her husband gets paid. Once twice, maybe three times a year, right? And so that income is very inconsistent, they kind of don't know Getting. So I think this can happen on that that broad scale but also it can be more on a monthly scale, right? If you're being paid hourly and you just have inconsistent checks or you know that stuff coming in Absolutely. This is something that takes a little bit more work and planning ahead right? And so what I what I usually recommend and I'll I'll refer back to what I talked about with the budgeting, right? You have to kind of really understand what those payments are. What are those core expenses that are happening every month? And then what I what I usually try to recommend is

Katie Horton:  maybe getting a little bit more refined in those living expenses. What is my baseline? Survive and planning based on that. And so if you have inconsistent income, you know, hopefully your income is Basics. And so plan for plan for that amount of income, right? If you. More than that, great, that can be your extra money that you use to, you know, pay off debt or to treat yourself a little bit more. Take a little family vacation. If you save that up, whatever it might be. So I think it's just really important to to plan ahead. And also, I will say to build up an emergency fund, right? You want to, you want to make those sacrifices? And those efforts to build up a little bit of a reserve because you might not know when your next check is coming in, right? And it's it can be a huge comfort and again a

Katie Horton:  A relief of stress in all areas of your life, if you know, okay, I'm good for the next month for the next three months. Whatever, it might be, I've got a little reserve if something happens and my my income goes down below what I need, I'm still, okay, so it does take a little bit more a little bit more work if you do have that inconsistent income but it's it's absolutely possible. You just have to plan ahead a little bit more.

Katie Wilkinson: Do you have any in that vein? Do you have any advice for Like how much money you should have, maybe not a dollar amount but like how should you plan an emergency fund? What should you consider while you're building that out?


How caregivers can build an emergency fund

Katie Horton: Absolutely. So I would say,  the first rule is get started, right? And so when I'm working with people, I usually The first goal is, Okay, let's build up a thousand dollars, right? Let's have some sort of buffer, I think the target is probably somewhere more like three to six months of your expenses again, that can feel pretty overwhelming for some people if they've got so many demands on their on their income. But I think getting started and having at least that thousand dollars, if you blow out a tire and have to replace your tires, on your car, It's okay, right? It turns emergencies into inconveniences and so I would say Get started but, you know, target a little bit more especially if you have that inconsistent income, it makes more sense to keep a little bit bigger reserve.

Katie Wilkinson: Yeah, thanks. And You, you mentioned this just a second ago but you know, many caregivers are researchers showed us that people. Nearly half of them have experienced some kind of financial setback. Whether that's, you know, not not investing or not contributing to their retirement accounts or tapping into personal savings have a couple questions sort of out of this. But a lot of caregivers you know, another financial setback might be taking on debt my first of my sort of follow-up questions here are. You know, how can someone start paying down debt?

Katie Horton: Yeah, absolutely.

Katie Wilkinson: How can they tackle that first?

How caregivers can start paying down debt

Katie Horton: I would sayAgain, similar to what I just said with the emergency fund Get started, right? It's again. I know how overwhelming it can feel. It's on the back burner. You don't want to have to deal with it but get started and you can start small right? You can start with. Okay. Can I pay an extra one percent? Right? One percent. Okay, Great I got that. Can I increase that to 2% and just slowly seeing how much you can find to put towards? To put towards these debts, right? And I think, One thing that I didn't mention back in the budgeting section but something that I often recommend for the people I'm working with is something I call the traffic light exercise. And so this is something that

Katie Horton:  usually what I have people do is download a statement that has all their expenses and they get three highlighters, the green one, a yellow one and red one and we mark in green, anything that we value and that we are excited that we spend our money on, right? The yellow is maybe things that we value, but aren't necessarily excited to pay. So for me, that's like my mortgage. I'm really glad I have a house, but I'm not very excited. Every month to pay my mortgage, right? The red ones are things that looking back. You don't really value at all and you kind of wish you you haven't spent your money on that, right? And I'm not gonna ask you guys to download statements and do that exercise unless you want to, by all means, please do. But I think that can be a very helpful framework for when you're spending, right? Every time you go to, to buy something, think to yourself, is this a green, a yellow or red expense and the idea is to get rid of the red expenses, right? We, we don't want them, we don't need them. And, you know, I I was talking to somebody

Katie Horton:  Day. And they went through this and they found 440 extra dollars that they didn't want to be spending, you know. And so so I think there's there's room in people's budgets if they just take the time to actually look for and make those conscious efforts to say, Hey, this is a red expense, I don't actually need this, I'd rather pay down my bet. My debt, then have this expense and you know, because it's it's really in two weeks. I'm going to be like, Why did I spend my money on that?

Katie Wilkinson: Yeah, I can. I mean, I can think about my own spending and how like, these little things we're like, oh, it's 10 bucks, whatever. And then it adds up You're like, I didn't need that $10 thing or that six dollar coffee, or whatever, or maybe you can't, I don't want to place value for anyone else, but I can, I can think about how those red lines would add up in my own in my own spending and there's some I'm throwing this question at you. It wasn't on our list originally. But, you know, there's some people on the Internet talk about like working on your debt snowball and starting with your smallest debt and then building up do you have any like thoughts or opinions around this approach and slash maybe just for our listeners can you explain the debt snowball? And then if you have any opinions about this,

How the debt snowball method works

Katie Horton:  Absolutely. Yes. So the debt snowball, the idea behind this is, you know, if if you add up all of your debt payments and I'll just pick numbers but let's just say your total

Katie Horton:  Debt payments is $300 a month, right? So I have $300 a month that I'm paying towards my debts and I can find. We'll just take this. You know I found this extra $400 from doing this traffic light exercise. Right. So now I have basically $900. Sorry I did wrong 300 to 400 I have I have seven hundred dollars that I can pay towards my debts. Right, so the idea is, there's kind of two ways to approach this either. Take that extra money and pay it down towards your smallest debt. What has the smallest balance? And put that money towards that to get that paid off faster. And that's pretty good from behavioral standpoint because it's like check, you know, I got I got that taken care of and the idea is you then take that money. Plus what you were paying on that debt previously, and you roll it over into the next step. And then you keep doing that. The other way you can do, that is tackling your highest interest rates first, right? The the debts that are costing. You the


Katie Horton:  Post. And and doing that same approach, right? Taking that extra money, throwing it all at the debt that has the highest interest rate and then rolling that into the next highest. And so on, and so forth, until you've paid down all of these debts. I love this approach, I think behaviorally it works really well, because you're already not living on that money, you know? And so, but rather than, Oh, I paid off this debt. So I have extra money to spend, no, I paid off this debt so I can put it towards next one and get these paid off even faster. And the one other thing that I would add to this is after you go through this process and you get to that point where you've paid off all these debts I would say, then start paying yourself. Save that money right? You're already not living on it and maybe you've been sacrificing significantly so maybe it's okay. I am gonna like loosen my belt a little bit and I'm going to use some of this to live a little bit better life right now but

Katie Horton:  But don't get in the habit of spending all of it right away. Start saving that and paying yourself. You're done. Paying other people. It's time to take care of your future self.

Katie Wilkinson: Yeah, you've rolled this really nicely into my next question, You know? I again a lot of caregivers are experiencing financial, setbacks like debt, you've just given some It wisdom on how to get rid of start working on your debt. And I guess, you know the next question is then okay, saving and investing. I think this can feel hard for a lot of caregivers who are like, but I'm still kind of strapped. I'm still stretched then. I don't want to go back into debt and do you have realistic tips for things like saving and investing?

Realistic tips for saving money

Katie Horton: Yeah, of course. So Obviously to find extra money. I've already talked about examples that traffic light exercise, you know, if you've completed the Stat snowball. what I would say is, Works. The best for people is making saving automatic set up automatic withdrawals from your account. If you can figure out how much you You think you can save every week every month, whatever it is.

Katie Horton:  Great to set up an automatic transfer directly from your checking to your savings account and and put it away, right? The other thing that I recommend people is actually opening up a high yield savings account, and usually these are through some sort of online bank. So there's not necessarily a brick and more mortar building that you can go into, but the benefits of these are not only do you get more interest on your savings, right? You start making money on what you're putting away, but it also is a little bit more out of sight, out of mind, right? I'm not logging into my bank account and seeing my checking balance and seeing that savings. Oh, I can just transfer some of that over, right? It's it's kind of another login. You have to go somewhere else to get it. So,

Katie Horton:  It works better for people saving because it's less tempting to just pull that money back over and and actually use it rather than keeping it saved. So those are two of the things that I definitely recommend for people as they're as they're really trying to get started, saving and investing. And obviously investing is a very similar. Very similar answer making it automatic obviously. If you have a retirement account at work, it's really nice. When they take they take that money out Automatically. You don't have to think about it. It's set up. It just goes into that retirement account and it's there later you check on it in six months. And you're like, Oh, wow. Like I've actually accumulated more than I thought I had and I, you know, didn't even feel it because it just automatically came out.

Katie Wilkinson: Yeah. What I love about what you've just shared is like the behavioral piece of it like How do we make this, You know, easier or potentially harder on ourselves to like not log in and check it and, you know, like How do we make it easy to do these things. So you don't have to like wave goodbye every month to It's just already tucked away and to savings and you just touched on this a little bit. But, you know, caregivers, see, first-hand the, the cost of long-term care and long-term care facilities and we've talked a little bit about savings, but people are, you know, looking forward to how do they set themselves out for financial success? You know, beyond the caregiving experience. And I'm wondering if you can talk a little bit about how someone determines, you know what they can afford to put aside for retirement And/or, long-term care savings. Like How do you How do you start that process? In addition to all the things we've just talked about.

How caregivers can build retirement savings

Katie Horton: Yeah, absolutely. And you know, this, this can be very difficult for caregivers because often not only are they caring for Their parents but also they may be caring still for children at home and you know, so they've got demands both above them and beneath them. And so we kind of refer to this as that sandwich generation, right? This is a group of people that there's a lot of demands going on. And so, you know, I would really say a lot of the things that I've already said before you know that traffic light exercise, really keeping that in your mind as you're Going out and spending money like What are do is this really adding value to my life, is this aligned with my goals? And I think that would be the other thing is really getting clear on on what your goals are. And again, back to that trade-off money. okay, I can use this to make my life better right now or I can take


Katie Horton:  take care of my future self. I often talk about this balance between my present self and my future self and we don't want to neglect either one of those, right? We don't want to neglect our present self and just keep that belt super tight and, you know, saving everything for the future. Because then in the future, you're kind of like wow I have more than I need, right? And and we don't want to neglect future self because then, you know, in 20 years we look back. Like, what was I thinking, right? Like, I lived way too well back then. And so, you know, really trying to find that balance between your present self and your future self and You know, I would say.

Katie Horton:  You may want to consider something like long-term care insurance, right? There's there's definitely some some security that can come from that and I would also mention

Katie Horton:  Roth IRA's are actually a really awesome way to get started saving for retirement. And one of the amazing things if you're worried that like, Okay, I think I can put this away for retirement, but I'm not actually sure like I might actually need that and if that's keeping you from getting started saving, Rafael Ray's, actually, whatever you contribute into that account, you can actually take it out anytime penalty-free tax-free. You have access to that money. Obviously if you put it in and you invested and it goes down, then you can't take out money, that's no longer there and if it goes up you can't take out those earnings that you get. But whatever you put in that, you know, hopefully you haven't lost. You can take that out. So it can kind of be a backup for people if, you know, okay. I thought I could say this for retirement but this thing came up and

Katie Horton:  I need that money. Okay, that's okay. You can take it out. So those are I think it's just hopefully makes it easier and less scary to to really just get started. 

Katie Wilkinson: Yeah, I think that's helpful for someone who doesn't know the words that you just said, like, on our Roth IRA, what? What is an IRA and where like where can someone actually log in or go to to Sign up for an eye out the tradition IRA or Roth IRA can you break it back down to the basics a little bit for us?

Katie Horton:  Yeah, great great question. I'm glad you asked that. So a Roth IRA, IRA stands for Individual Retirement account. So this is something that any individual can set up and if you have income employment income self-employment income you can contribute into this account, right? And there are limits on how much you can put in every year and different things that I don't necessarily need to go into. But most brokerage firms will offer this this account. So, just to name some of the big ones not necessarily recommending any of them, but but if you go to Vanguard or Schwab or TD Ameritrade Fidelity all, you know, some of these big investment brokerage firms.

Katie Horton:  It's pretty easy to open up a Roth Ira. You can just go on and it I remember when I opened my first one, it it was scary. It was like This is a whole new world that I am unfamiliar with like What do I do. And there's been many people that I've walked through this process because the first time absolutely can be intimidating and scary, and I don't really know exactly what I'm getting myself into so, but but it's easy to get started. And just said another little side note on a Roth IRA. The reason it's called the Roth IRA. Well, retirement accounts in general, have different tax advantages and with the Roth IRA the advantage is You're putting in money that you've already paid taxes on, right? So your paycheck, they've taken out there. You're withholding that money. You get, if you put that into the Roth IRA,

Katie Horton:  And then we talked about that investment growth that money gets to grow completely tax-free. Forever, right? So you've paid that money. You've paid tax on that money. Now you put it in a Roth Ira. It grows whenever you take it out after you're 59 and a half, you can take all of it out without penalty or anything. You never have to pay tax on that money ever. So it's it's a pretty awesome vehicle in that way is in that. It can save you a lot on taxes.


Katie Wilkinson: Yeah, I love that. I mean that's that's why we're having conversation. That's what we're trying to do is help people, you know, figure out how to Save money and maximize their money and You had started to touch on insurance, like long-term care insurance and

Katie Wilkinson: Type of insurance. You talk a little bit about how someone in their

Katie Horton: Yeah, this can be a difficult place in like I've alluded to before. There are some people who Are financial planners that? Really are insurance salesman and they may try to sell you things that you're not sure if you actually need or not right? And so, you know, I would say at a basic level, People need things such as car insurance, health insurance, homeowners insurance, or renters insurance, depending on where you are. And those protect against again, those just basic needs that we all have, you know, the next the next piece I would recommend is probably life insurance. I usually recommend term life insurance versus a permanent life insurance such as whole life, universal life variable life. There's a whole bunch of different things but a term life insurance policy, essentially gives you life insurance coverage for a certain period of time. And

Katie Horton: The question I would ask if you're considering, do I need life? Insurance is okay if I were to pass away. Would anyone then be financially burdened? Because I wasn't here. Right? And so this can be if I'm a breadwinner, right? And I'm bringing an income to my house, then obviously if I'm gone, great income's gone. That's a financial burden on the people who are left or maybe I don't have income coming in, but I'm a caregiver. And so, if I'm gone well, now, we need to hire somebody else to come in, again, financial burden, right? So, so, that's the question that I would ask in. And obviously, how much you need is gonna depend on, on your circumstances, but it may be worth just sitting down and thinking about it, right? Okay. If I leave

Katie Horton:  And I'm a breadwinner maybe it's okay. Here's how much money I would be making that would be used to go towards my loved ones and and helping them ease that financial burden. Some people are like Yeah I want to make sure that my mortgage is paid off and that my kids have a college educ. You know, it can really vary but there's yeah, I would say just try to go through some sort of process to say, Okay, what would be the hole? That would be left if I wasn't here. If you know, we need to hire caretakers for children or parents or whoever else. What? Cost and how much would we want to have? To make sure that those are who are surviving us. Don't. To worry about finances, right? That as they're dealing with and grieving the death of you or as you're grieving the death of another loved one. Have enough that it's like, okay, I can, I can still breathe. I don't have to feel like ultimate strap about

Katie Horton: About my financial situation. I would also say, Disability insurance is something that that some people look into often employers will offer this. So I would, I would definitely check with your employer. See if they offer that if they do. Make sure you sign up and like I mentioned earlier, long-term care insurance, you know? This is something that a lot of you are, you know, very well familiar with the, the value of that insurance. I would say as a general rule of thumb with long-term care insurance. If you have or anticipate having a net worth of, you know, somewhere in the range of two million dollars for a lot of people that's like, yeah, like not even gonna happen. Those people, I would say it's, it's pretty easy to self-insure, right? To say, Okay, I don't need to buy this insurance. I have enough assets that I could I could pay for this myself.

Katie Horton:  If you have family members who, you know, you can rely on, you know, maybe you don't need as much coverage. But if you Have felt the burden. And I talked to a lot of people like this, who they felt the burden or seen, the burden that being a caregiver puts on somebody. And they don't want to do that. You know, I hear all the time. I don't want to be a burden on my kids. I don't want to On my kids. Great. Maybe it's worth considering long-term, care insurance. I would say that the ideal time to start looking into, this is probably in your like early to mid 50s. Once you get kind of into your later 50s and 60s, the cost of it can start going up quite significantly. You don't necessarily need it in your in your 40s. Because, you know, that's you're paying for coverage a lot sooner than you'll need it. So I would say, You know, buy your mid 50s, I would I would look into that and make sure you have the coverage that makes sense for you.


Katie Wilkinson: As someone who does not have life insurance, nor long-term care insurance. This question might just be for myself, but is a financial advisor? Someone who can help you find the best either of those insurance types. Find the best policy or is there somewhere else that people can be looking when they want to look into, excuse me, long term, care insurance or life insurance.

Katie Horton: Yeah, absolutely. So they're a financial advisor, absolutely can help you and and point you in the right direction. You can also go to different insurance agencies and, and find them, you know, even even just a quick Google search on, you know, what's the best long-term care insurance that can help you out again, with, with life insurance. And sometimes with long-term care insurance as well. There's a lot of different nuances and ways they can pull you in and try to get you to have coverage that you don't need. I would say, I don't want to Speak negatively about life insurance, people who sell it because it is a very important product. But again, like I said, I usually recommend that term life insurance. It's it's a lot cheaper. It's a lot more affordable and it it really will give you coverage again for Ideally those Years. Well, you if you are death happened, prematurely that's,

Katie Horton: In those, that's when you'd be more of a financial burden on the people, you leave behind but you know, once you get into retirement, ideally you have saved what you need. And and it's you no longer need that that life insurance coverage. So having some sort of whole life insurance policy, I find typically isn't as beneficial for people as those term life insurance policies.

Katie Wilkinson: Thanks. Yeah. That I mean, that's useful. That's useful to know, especially, you know, someone's going in. It. Yeah, to it to a salesperson who might tell them, they need something that they don't, and We've talked about a lot of things. Saving investing paying down debt, and if you had to boil down your financial advice into the three things that every person or every caregiver should do what their money, what would those three things be?

3 things every caregiver should do with their money

Katie Horton: Where I always start is. Income greater than expenses, right? If that's not working. It's worth the sacrifice to get that in place, right? Because if you're spending more than you're making You're digging a hole and every month it continues that hole is getting deeper right. And, and again, I get that, it can be overwhelming, but making those sacrifices making that effort to really control your expenses and, and get your income to a place where at least is equal and hopefully that your income is a little bit higher. So that's where I'd start with everybody. Make sure that's in place. The second thing I would say is, Plan ahead, right? I talked briefly about the taking care of your present self versus your future self.

Katie Horton:  Making sure you're planning ahead setting aside a little bit for that. Emergency fund. Not neglecting that future you, right? You don't want future view to be be mad at you right at past you. So planning ahead and, and just taking the time to, to think about this. Don't don't let the current situation and I get how difficult it can be to, to think, even to tomorrow sometimes. But taking those moments set, aside an hour, you know, once a month and just just start thinking about it.

Katie Horton:  And the third thing I would say is Make sure you build in fun. I actually, in my personal budget, I have what I call my fun fund, And every month a little bit of money goes into my fun fund. Especially as caregivers, it's You have to make sure that you're taking care of yourself as well, right? So much of what you do is focused on those around you and I'm sure you're all very aware like burnout is is a very real thing and I think building in that fun and making sure that you are taking the intentional chance to

Katie Horton:  To treat yourself to something every once in a while, you know, building in fun. I think is a very important piece of any financial plan.


Katie Wilkinson: Yeah, I mean, I love, I love your fun fun. I also love the idea of, you know, a date night to talk about finances, which may be isn't like the most sexy but I think it means a sort of full circle to like finances or are stressful and emotional. And if we can like figure out how to make it a more fun to talk about and be get it under control then you know it doesn't have to you're not operating out of fear stress all the time so I love both of those and ideas. You've given us like a ton of wisdom and tips here. I know that Morrow obviously offers like more personalized guidance. For people's finances. Where can people find you? And Morrow online, if they want to learn more or access your services?

Katie Horton:  Yeah, so Morrow is actually available on the givers dashboard. So if you, if you log in there you can, you can find us there. You can also go to our website, which is use or if you'd like to reach out to me. Personally, I'd be happy to hear from you and my email address is Katie Katie at Used