Is 74 Too Old For Managing Your Own Finances? Caller Asks Suze Orman If It's Time To Give Her Kids Control — Solely Based On Age

In a recent episode of Suze Orman's podcast, "Should I Let My Children Run My Finances?" a listener in their mid-seventies asks whether transferring all financial assets to their children is wise. 

Orman responds firmly, advising against this move. She compares it to giving up control of your entire life. 

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"You may think that you're doing them a favor, but you are not," Orman Clarifies. She explains that transferring financial control assumes that the children are more capable of managing the money than their parent, which might not be the case. Orman stresses the importance of maintaining control over one's finances: "This is your money. This is something that you need to know about."

Highlighting the potential risks, Orman adds, "Chances are they probably don't know what they're doing. But even if they do, what happens then if something happens to your children? You never know what can happen in life." She cautions against making irreversible decisions that could jeopardize financial security, such as changing the titles of properties or stock portfolios into their children's names.

Orman's adamant advice is, "Do not give up your power. You keep everything in your name and the only way that your beneficiaries get what you have is upon your death. Do you hear me? All right. Ok."

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Orman's position is clear: having control over and understanding your own finances is crucial, especially in later life, and you should not prematurely relinquish this responsibility. 

Just because a person is in their 70s doesn't render them incapable of handling their own finances. Orman, who is 73, strongly advocates for working as long as possible. She famously suggests people delay retirement until 70 or beyond

This approach challenges the stereotype that reaching a certain age automatically means someone can’t manage their finances. The reality is that people are living longer, healthier lives, staying active and engaged well into their 70s and beyond. This is reflected in the trend of people delaying retirement and remaining involved in the workforce. This caller’s age shouldn’t be the deciding factor — her financial competence should be.

While Orman cautions against premature asset transfer, strategic estate planning can be beneficial. Tools like living trusts and Grantor-Retained Annuity Trusts (GRATs) offer ways to manage and eventually transfer wealth without prematurely relinquishing control. These instruments allow for tax-efficient wealth transfer, ensuring assets are protected and utilized according to the owner's wishes.

Given the complexities of estate and financial planning, it is advisable to consult with financial advisors or estate planning attorneys. These professionals can tailor strategies to individual circumstances, ensuring that legal and tax implications are thoroughly considered and that financial plans align with personal and family goals.

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