Family Matters: The Money Squeeze
Three families, living in multigenerational households, face difficult financial decisions surrounding elder care, paying for college and retirement.
Geneva Hunter (left), who runs the secretarial operations for a Washington, D.C., law firm, decided to take a hands-on approach to her mother's care and moved Ida Christian, 89, into her Maryland home.
The finances, logistics and emotions involved in caring for an elderly family member can be overwhelming. But three caregivers in multigenerational households see little choice. "She did her best for me, and I want to do the best for her," Geneva Hunter says of her 89-year-old mother, Ida.
April 17, 2012 To cope with the hard times, millions of families have pulled together — stacking two, three, even four generations on top of one another. An NPR series explores the lives of three multigenerational households struggling with issues of money, duty and love.
April 24, 2012 Nearly 10 million adult children are caring for aging parents today, according to a study by the MetLife Mature Market Institute. But, while aging is inevitable, planning for the costs associated with dependency in the latter phase of life doesn't come easily to most Americans.
May 1, 2012 Few people want to turn over a loved one to institutional care. No matter how good the nursing home, it may seem cold and impersonal — and very expensive. But making the choice to provide care yourself is fraught with financial risks and personal sacrifices.
May 8, 2012 As the nation's roughly 78 million baby boomers move into old age, the need for long-term care will soar. But when it comes to long-term-care insurance, relatively few sign up. The policies can be expensive and some big insurance companies have stopped offering them.
May 15, 2012 Nicholas McDonald grew up tempted by drugs and under pressure to hit the streets. Lacking male role models, he says he always saw his mom as "the apple of my eye." She tried to protect him growing up. Now, the 24-year-old is doing his best to return the favor, helping provide for his multigenerational family.
May 22, 2012 Depressed home prices make the decision to move an aging relative even more difficult than normal. So what should be done with the house? Try selling in a depressed market? Or rent it until prices perk up? One family weighs a tough choice as it struggles to pay for a grandmother's care.
May 29, 2012 Sharing the duties of caring for the family's 87-year-old matriarch has brought the Martin family closer together. Everyone in the multigenerational household, including the teenage kids, lends a hand. But the situation is also forcing the Harrisburg, Pa., family to think about the future in new ways.
June 5, 2012 As this immense generation keeps aging, most will end up with dementia or other disabilities that require costly care. For individuals, families and taxpayers, this demographic shift will drain dollars and attention, and force extremely difficult decisions about living arrangements, as well as end-of-life care.
May 29, 2012 Mothers and fathers can make a difference in whether their kids become spenders or savers, studies have found. Young people whose families had included them in conversations about money and budgets were much more likely to make more responsible financial decisions in the future.
May 15, 2012 From your late 40s through early 60s, you're supposed to squirrel away cash to cope with health care costs in your old age. But for millions of Americans, middle age also is the time when children are seeking help with higher-education bills, and elderly parents may be needing assistance with daily care.