I am very lucky to still have my two grandmothers. They are both well into their eighties and live independently. I always want to make sure that I get just the right gift for them. I have found that if I purchase a “dust collector” they will smile and thank me, but it isn’t really what they need.
I have put together a list of items that help them stay independent and make their lives easier since they are on a fixed income. These are gifts that help seniors financially while also reminding them that they are loved by friends and family:
The gift of food. You can prepare a favorite dessert or meal for your loved ones. Even though it will never taste as good as grandma’s, they will appreciate it. If you live close by you can prepare several meals and put them in the freezer for later.
Give the gifts of services. One good idea might be to hire a weekly cleaning service. This will help with the harder areas to clean like windows and stairs. If you’re able, you could do the cleaning rather than paying for the service. Or, you could provide another service for your loved one, like cutting the grass or other work around the house. These are gifts that help seniors financially, but they also help ensure that your loved ones aren’t trying to do too much on their own.
The gift of gift cards. If your family member has a favorite restaurant or store, a gift card would be a great idea. You may want to consider a gift card for their favorite beauty salon or even one to get gas or to have the oil changed in their car. Also, think of hobbies your loved one enjoys (and materials they may need) and purchase a gift card to the store where they purchase these items. One of my grandmothers enjoys researching genealogy on her computer and putting together genealogy books for the family. We found out that she had to replace the ink cartridges on her printer often and they are pricey. Several family members purchased gift cards to the office supply store so she could purchase new cartridges when she needed them.
If your loved one does not drive, purchase bus passes or taxi vouchers.
Plan a road trip with your loved one. Maybe there is a friend or family member that they have not seen lately and would love to visit, an exotic place they would like to see, or maybe they would like to show you places from their past.
More than anything, spend time with your senior loved ones. This will probably mean the most to them. My grandmothers have so many stories to share, and I have learned so much about them. They are a wealth of knowledge and I never go home without learning something new. If you spend time with your senior loved ones, I bet you will learn a lot too.
Gifts that Help Seniors Financially Will Contribute to Independence and Stability
Most seniors want to stay independent and stable, even if on a fixed income. You can contribute by giving gifts that help seniors with tasks around the house, transportation, or even by providing unique opportunities for them, like a trip or vacation. Giving gifts that help seniors financially is a great way to show your loved ones that you care while also providing basic needs for them and helping them remain financially secure and stable.
For other ideas about how to help secure financial independence for yourself or loved ones, visit Clearpoint at www.clearpoint.org. We can help you or your loved ones review your budget and see where adjustments can be made to improve your finances.