The last relative has said their good-bye and you drive home to an empty house. The shock is wearing off and the grief is settling in. You crawl into bed still wearing your funeral clothes and pray that it’s all been a bad dream.
Even if your spouse suffered a long illness and you wished them out of their suffering, it’s the finality that shocks you.
While there are churches and support groups and website resources to assist with the emotional and legal challenges, I have found few solid resources to address one of the scariest aspects of widowhood, FINANCES.
So, where do you start?
Meet with a reliable Financial Advisor
If you and your spouse did not consult a financial advisor in the past, it’s time to do so. You don’t have to be a millionaire to use their services, and part of their job is to help you create strategies to protect the assets you have accumulated and plan for income as you move forward.
How do you find a reliable Financial Advisor?
- Recommendations from professionals (accountants, attorneys, etc.) whom you trust.
- Recommendations from friends and relatives based on actual relationships they’ve had with that advisor.
- Do not assume that because you recognize the name of the firm, the advisor will offer the best fit for you. Independent Advisors probably offer more options than those at big firm wire houses and are subject to the same level of required oversight.
- Make appointments with several Advisors. Establish up-front that the first consultation is free. See with whom you feel most comfortable. Make sure that he or she understands your investment goals and objectives.