Senior fisherman rowing in a boat on a lake Mikkeljavre in NorwaThroughout your working years, you have worked hard and saved diligently for retirement. Hopefully you will enter retirement on solid footing, but comfort also brings some risk. As you get older, you could become prone to forgetfulness. And in the worst case scenarios, con artists take advantage of older people to raid their retirement funds.

Since this unfortunate fate can befall anyone before they’re even aware of what is happening, take action now to protect yourself in the future. Consider these steps to safeguard your money from mistakes and criminal activity.

Designate a power of attorney. Choose a responsible adult child, or even a trustworthy friend, and take the necessary legal steps to designate them as your durable power of attorney. In the event that you are ever mentally or physically impaired, and unable to manage your own money, this person can step in to perform important tasks for you.

Inform your power of attorney of your long-term retirement income plans and any other wishes you have. List your power of attorney as the person of contact with your doctor’s office, so that they will be informed right away in the event of serious illness, accident, the onset of dementia, and so on.

Simplify your finances. As you’re planning for retirement, you might keep your assets spread over multiple accounts according to your desire for growth. But as you get older, it can become difficult to oversee so many different strategies. Some retirees find that consolidating everything into one easy to manage account helps to simplify their lives.

Holding multiple bank accounts and credit cards can also put you at risk. How long would it take you to realize something has gone amiss, if a credit or debit card was lost or stolen? Once you’ve retired, simplify your life with only one checking account, and only one or two credit cards that carry desirable benefits.

Get notified of problems immediately. Most major financial institutions now offer their customers email alerts when their accounts are subject to large transactions. Ask your bank to send an alert to both you and your power of attorney, so that you will both become aware of any potential problems right away.

Meet with a financial advisor regularly. One of the best ways to keep your retirement income plan on track throughout retirement is to meet regularly with a financial professional. Call us at 760.436.1711 to schedule an appointment and we can discuss any plans or possible new opportunities you are considering. We can help you check things out and decide if your plans are protected.