Seniors feeling the pinch of inflation? There are programs to help

If we’re all feeling the bite of inflation, how will the elderly and those on fixed incomes fare?

With the rising prices of food, gas, and prescription drugs, you may be feeling strapped for money and worried that you won’t be able to afford some of the basics.

I was recently informed by my William Raveis Mortgage Specialist, Brian Skelly, that the May inflation figures were reported in the Consumer Price Index as significantly worse than expected.

“It rose to 8.6% in May from 8.3% in April, the highest since 1981,” he said. While this is not good news for mortgage rates, it affects every aspect of our lives as well.

If you’re having trouble, check out, a free service from the National Council on Aging that connects you to benefit programs. The site includes more than 2,500 such programs.

As Skelly also explained, the Federal Reserve raised rates to try to bring down those inflation numbers, and inflation continues to rise.

As an industry, we have announced that home values ​​have increased dramatically and people should take advantage of it. Some ideas include selling and downsizing a condominium or single-story home, selling and moving into an assisted living facility, tapping into equity and taking out loans, or considering a reverse mortgage.

Although rates are rising, these may be smart choices for those who are struggling but still have a significant financial asset – in their home. The key is to act quickly.

For those who don’t have housing as an asset, or for those considering options, can identify groups that can help you find and pay for affordable housing or keep your home, make essential repairs home and provide payment assistance with utility bills.

Programs include:

HUD and Section 8 housing programs

Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) and Weatherization

Reverse Mortgage Consultation

Foreclosure prevention and assistance

Other housing-related supports include tax relief programs that help cover your home’s property taxes. For example, you may find that you are entitled to benefits such as exemptions, discounts, credits, deductions and deferrals.

Of course, local estate agents can also offer advice. As a senior real estate specialist, I have a network of resources and can help assess needs to match the best case scenario and outcome based on an individual’s real estate asset.

Paying for prescriptions is another cost that takes a massive toll on everyone’s budget. If you’re having trouble paying for your medications, learn about the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ Limited Income Newly Eligible Transition (LINET) program at LINET provides immediate and temporary access to medications for low-income Medicare beneficiaries who do not have prescription drug coverage.

Another way to take matters into your own hands is to reach out to local government officials to enlist their support for state and federal initiatives, such as Social Security reform and affordable prescription drug legislation. Congress should be working hard to bring short- and long-term relief to seniors, and they will act when pressed by the strong, consistent voices of their constituents — that means you.

Pam Kirkby lives in Branford with her husband and children. She is a real estate agent with William Raveis Real Estate, serves all age groups and regions, but has a special affinity for seniors, has a senior real estate specialist designation, and sits on the board of directors. administration of the Shoreline Eldercare Alliance. Her website address is:; and the email is: [email protected]

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