Episode 8

December 30, 2022


#22 | Katie Brenneman | Spending Down Wisely

Hosted by

Tony Siebers Bina Colman
#22 | Katie Brenneman | Spending Down Wisely
Parent Projects - Aging In America
#22 | Katie Brenneman | Spending Down Wisely

Dec 30 2022 | 00:36:04


Show Notes


Today’s Guest is Katie Brenneman. Katie Brenneman is the founder and president of Stronghold Financial. Stronghold Financial is a full-service wealth management and Medicaid planning firm driven by one focused goal – to help clients grow, protect, and transfer all they have worked so hard to achieve. They continually establish themselves as a leader in the financial services community. They do this by providing the utmost in quality of financial services and products which cater to each client’s needs and interests.

Follow Stronghold financial on youTube at: https://www.youtube.com/@strongholdfi…

Looking for information? Parent Projects takes the stress and intimidation out of the process for families relocating an aged loved one using our educational and self-help downsizing guides found at www.parentprojects.com. Through our “Verified” Business Network, advocates can access the pre-screened professional services they need on their terms with the financial and personal safety peace-of-mind their families deserve.

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00:00 – Intro

01:43 – Introduction to Katie Brenneman

05:49 – Ad: Parent Projects Tour

11:14 – Worries and Concerns

23:44 – Ad: Refuge Coffee Company

24:40 – FAQ about Stronghold Financial

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Parent Projects™ Podcast is a resource of stories, interviews, and tips to help families replace guilt and fear with a little love and laughter.

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Episode Transcript

Speaker 1 00:00:06 You're listening to parent projects. Speaker 2 00:00:10 Hey guys, and welcome back from, uh, the holiday season. We're kind of in the throes of that. If you celebrate the Octa of Christmas, we're smack dab right in the center. And there's probably a lot of family dynamics that have been going on in a lot of our audience households. And today we want to talk through some of those. If you've looked through some of those questions of how long does this go on, how do we pay for this? Uh, what, how do we start dealing with our family? Moving into maybe an all techs here in Arizona, an Oregon Health plan, whatever your Medicaid system is, and these things are really difficult. A challenge if you're tired of throwing a search term into Google and getting nothing but speak or advertisements, this is the episode to pay attention to. We have Katie Brenneman with Stronghold Financial, and not only she have president of a great organization that's gonna provide us some alternatives to that and understanding how to spin down wisely. She is, she's truly a founder and somebody who cares about communicating and helping families walk their way through this. So stay tuned today with Katie Brennaman. Speaker 1 00:01:35 You're listening to Parent Projects, a Family Media and Technology Group Production. Now, here's your host, Tony Seber. Speaker 2 00:01:45 Hey, guys. Uh, growing and preserving your assets, protecting yourself, protecting your family, your loved ones, figuring out how do you grow the wealth that you need? You've got your own, uh, experiences perhaps of, of how to hold onto your retirement plan. You're watching your parents maybe run out of money and understand what that looks like. And we live in a time in which a single medical incident can suck all of that away. And it's confusing times. And I know, and we live at two, Katie, we have, I really appreciate you joining us today, folks. Katie Brennaman Stronghold Financial, uh, you know, that re the from retirement planning to understanding has life insurance come into this? What are the options to spending down medical, divorce type stuff, all of those issues for crying out loud. It is great to have somebody on <laugh> who can speak the financial lingo and can talk to us with a compassion and empathetic ear. Thanks for joining us, Katie. Speaker 4 00:02:41 Yeah, thank you so much for having me. Speaker 2 00:02:44 So, uh, and Katie, you're joining us from Phoenix today, is that right? Speaker 4 00:02:48 That's right. Speaker 2 00:02:49 Okay, awesome. So, a lot of the conversation we'll have, I imagine, is gonna really form around, especially if it gets into Medicaid alternatives or something, it's gonna form around Arizona and Altecs for, for our audience, our national audience. Does that that sound right? Speaker 4 00:03:04 Yes. But just, you know, if you're tuning in from somewhere else in the country, just know that a similar program exists in all 50 states. So there are nuances depending on, on where you live in terms of eligibility and what the, the program is going to provide, the value it will provide. But there is an option regardless of where you are, if you're in the United States. Speaker 2 00:03:25 I love that, and we really appreciate you being here to connect us to it. So, hey, Katie, tell us, uh, how do you, like, this is, this is a messy thing. I mean, finance in general, when you're setting up and talking to people about planning retirement or working, um, that's a big conversation. How do you become somebody who decides you're good with having conversations of families that are entering this messy stage? How, how, how did you show up on that Speaker 4 00:03:50 <laugh>? Um, man, that's an interesting question. I mean, I, I had personal family experience, so I guess I could bring, bring that to the table in terms of understanding what people are going through financially and emotionally to some extent. I mean, it was my grandmother, so it wasn't me going through it personally, but just from watching her and her experience with my grandfather, um, I think just having sympathy for the situation and understanding that these are human beings. You know, we're talking about health and money and they're the two most personal things that anyone could be talking about. No one wants to talk about those things with anyone much less stranger. Right? So I, I think it's just important to show that you care about the person at, at the root of this, yes, there's a larger problem that we're trying to solve, but these are real people and, uh, myself and everyone in my firm, that's always, it's the most important thing for us to lead with, is remembering that there's a real life person that we're talking about. Speaker 2 00:04:54 Well, that, and that is, uh, it's a, it's a comfort to know that organizations are thinking that way, particularly in the financial side. Yeah. Uh, and, and can listen a bit as somebody's coming in before they just broadcast it seems like sometimes a shotgun of options, uh, and where you plan and how you plan and, and it's already a confusing environment. Uh, I, I think it's an important thing that I'd tell our, our members and listeners when they are screening and they're looking for organizations to help them, especially when it comes down to financial or medical planning, look for organizations that understand how to listen first. So it sounds like you guys just hold is really grabbed that and, um, yeah. Speaker 4 00:05:35 Yeah. I mean, everyone's story is different. Everyone's situation is different. Um, plans, no one should have a cookie cutter plan, right? Yeah. Cause of all of these unique circumstances and nuances. And so if you don't understand what's actually happening within that particular family dynamic, you don't even know what solution to, to recommend or, or what direction to guide someone or what advice or guidance to give them. Right? So it definitely, like hearing the story and, and understanding what's going on and what problem are we trying to solve, um, is the most important thing that, that we do in the first conversation with a family. Speaker 2 00:06:13 And, and I okay that, and I like that as a prep. So as an organization who looks to prepare people into these conversations and then help 'em in the conversa and help 'em make that connection, um, what problem are we looking to solve? That sounds like that could be a good focal point for the family coming into something like this is to think through maybe listing out or, or having some love list of the problems. Would that be a good way to come start your conversations with Speaker 4 00:06:37 You? Definitely your family. Yeah, because it, again, someone could be in crisis where, you know, mom and dad, someone's moving into an assisted living community tomorrow. Um, and, and we need to figure out the financial planning aspect of this immediately. Maybe they've been in assisted living for years, depleting assets, and they're about to run out of money, and what's going to happen when that happens, right? On the flip side, maybe someone just received an Alzheimer's or dementia diagnosis, and maybe they're still relatively independent, but we know that over time things are going to transition on a certain trajectory, and we need to make sure that we're prepared for if and when that time comes and making sure that there's a, a smooth transition and a a plan in place. And those are gonna be completely different planning scenarios from my perspective. A firm that, that, you know, does what what we do, for example. Speaker 2 00:07:32 Totally. And, and our do you, will your, your firm see, uh, many people who are starting to plan for maybe, uh, how do I say that? So let's say my parents are going to exhaust, like we look and we expect that we're going to exhaust what they've got out there. Do we start looking at that in a planning of us and resources from that? Do, would you start taking on and looking at what they still have, what mom and dad still have, or as a plan starts coming through? That might be way over detailed of a plan, but whereas a mindset, should I be thinking about when, uh, I'm a family member, I'm a, I'm a I'm a adult, you know, an adult kid, and I'm recognizing I have a parent project. Um, should I be looking to engage, get my my family member involved to meet with you as well? Do we start talking through that conversation together upfront? How, how would that flow? Speaker 4 00:08:21 Yeah. I mean, you should have started planning yesterday. Speaker 2 00:08:24 <laugh>. Yeah. Yeah, right. <laugh>, right. But what I've also learned is I could have planned yesterday, and it seems like tomorrow's gonna change everything. <laugh>. Speaker 4 00:08:31 Yeah. It's, it's just never too soon. I mean, the, the statistics are not in any of our favor. Four out of five seniors, 65 and up in the US are going to need long-term care at some point in their life. The question is for how long? Um, the average length of stay is 2.8 years for a male and 3.5 years for a female. Last I saw, um, some people fall on the, the low end of that average, right? Yeah. And then some of our clients have been in long-term care for close to a decade, for example. So you just never know where you're going to fall in that range that arrives at that average. And so you're really doing yourself a disservice if you're not prepared for being the person that needs long-term care for a decade, potentially. Yeah. Speaker 2 00:09:17 Yeah. That, um, those, those are real challenges. What, uh, one thing I think specifically to start thinking in is, and talk when we come back from this first break, is, uh, let's, let's maybe break one down. You know, that when that family's coming in to, to see you guys, what are, what is it that strongholds gonna do, particularly if they're the family that they know, not only do they have themselves to take care of, but they're going to have to somehow plan some assets, perhaps for, also for an older family member too, or that that's gonna have to be some plan for that. So we'll be right back with Katie Brennaman Stronghold Financial after this. Hello and welcome. I'm Tony Siber. I'm the founder of Parent Projects, and I'm gonna take you on a quick tour of the organization. Come on. The organization is full of surprises, and if you've seen one parent project, you've seen one pair project. So generally, we just try to be mission driven, objective, virtuous, empathetic, and dependable. We call it being moved. Come on, and let me show you the insight. Speaker 2 00:10:27 So our organization lives inside the Arizona State University, SkySong Innovation Center, and Scottsdale, Arizona. It gives us an opportunity, be around a lot of creative people and creativity. Well, sometimes it turns into trouble, but most of the time it's gonna turn into quality content for you. I just want to take this moment to tell you, we're pleased to have you here. We look forward to helping you. If there's anything at all that you need, please reach out, follow us on the other socials that you like best, and the platform that's your favorite. And until you and I get an opportunity to talk one-on-one, behold and be held Speaker 2 00:11:14 And being sure to, uh, to mention to the backside of that folks, it's, uh, parent Projects Connect, uh, formerly Senior Moves Connect is our online platform. You can find [email protected]. If you are a family member and you're trying to figure that out, what to do and when or when it's time for you to sit down and talk with Katie or Stronghold Financials and others, uh, that's, that's the platform for you to help. And we've got Katie today, uh, Katie Brennaman, stronghold Financial, they full service, financial planning firm, uh, working with these clients, building your grow, growing, and, and building the wealth that you got out there, minimizing the risk, the tax, also understanding families that have the complication of some type of parent project. So again, Katie, thanks for joining us today. Let's, uh, let's dig in a little bit to, uh, you know, when a family's coming to talk with you guys and Stronghold Financial in particular, and they've got, they've gotta plan somehow for long-term care. You just put out some statistics that, that are big. And when we're talking 48 million people, uh, currently in, in those entitlement programs, going to 90 million in the next seven years here in the United States, that's gonna overwhelm some systems and we've gotta be able to help ourselves. What, um, what are they gonna deal with at Stronghold? What are you guys gonna talk with them and, and how, what can, what can we expect, um, out of a great firm? Speaker 4 00:12:35 Would it be helpful to walk through, uh, like a, a client scenario? An actual client? Speaker 2 00:12:42 I think I love that. Is that what you're looking for? I think I love that. Yep. Speaker 4 00:12:44 Yeah. Um, so one of our clients right now, for example, is a gentleman, Steven, and he reached out because his wife had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's four years ago at the age of 57, believe it or not. Um, so four years in, she'd been living at home with Steven, and things had just kind of progressed to a point where it wasn't safe for her to be at home with him anymore. And it wasn't healthy for him either. And so he was looking at moving her into a memory care community. And, um, Steven had, he'd done well for himself. You talk about, you know, doing all the right things and saving your money and investing and planning for your retirement. He and his wife had about $800,000 of investible assets. Yeah. And, uh, Steven was looking at his wife's monthly cost of care, which is 6,400 bucks a month in today's dollars. Speaker 4 00:13:36 She's only 61 years old. What's that going to look like over the next 10 years? Potentially, uh, maybe longer. Who knows that she might need to be in that memory care setting? Um, she's physically healthy, she's young, relatively speaking, and, uh, Steven himself is only 65 right now, and he's very physically healthy. So he's looking at this going, my wife's social security is gonna be 500 bucks a month. She never really worked. She's got a $6,400 a month long-term care bill that's gonna go up 5% a year on average for inflation. Um, 10 years from now, I'm going to have blown through my entire life savings, and I'm only gonna be 75 years old. She's only going to be 71. What if she's still alive and still in long-term care? And what about me and how am I gonna be okay? Speaker 2 00:14:26 Yeah. And, and those, uh, you, I mean, we are talking even before the show, uh, boy, you're, and not only is money hard to talk about, but, and what I hope this breaks down is they're complicated. We, we, we don't like to get out there, but they're real situations. But now you're talking about real emotion. Yeah. Emotion, your partner, your, you know, love your life going through these challenges, or a parent, it's going through this type of a challenge. So, okay. So it's complicated. They make a dump. You get some understanding of those. What are, where do we, where do we go from there? I mean, just in general, what are the types of things that people need to be familiar with? Speaker 4 00:15:04 Yeah, that's a great question. I think in this is a, just a perfect example of what's possible. Um, in Steven's case, you know, we call that crisis planning. His wife is moving into long-term care tomorrow, and in he's in need of financial assistance. Back in the day, you would've looked at someone with $800,000 of assets and said, a, that person will never qualify for state assistance through the Medicaid long-term care program. And B, why would that person ever need it? They have 800 grand. Well, we just talked through how it doesn't get you that far anymore these days. Um, Steven had actually called the Arizona Medicaid department and asked, what would need to happen for me to qualify for this benefit for my wife? And they flat out told them on the phone, you need to spend everything down to $139,000 in his case. So $650,000 essentially would need to be spent on his wife's long-term care costs, which he was prepared to do. Yeah. But luckily, the memory care community knew of my firm and made the introduction, and we've been able to show Steve and how we can qualify his wife for the state's long-term care program, protect all $800,000 for him in the process. He doesn't have to send down a penny of it. Yeah. And his wife's out of pocket costs on a monthly basis is gonna go from 6,400 bucks a month down to about 375 bucks a month. Speaker 2 00:16:30 See now, and, and as we get into more and more adult children and, and, and kid and us Right. Might be our peers that are going to be dealing with this, with our, with our parents mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And that becomes important when you're talking about, let's, let's say they didn't plan for that, or it just, things accelerated pretty quickly and we've added new sicknesses, covid and some of the, that long-term, long covid, like these weren't things that were at the scale they're at now to even be planning for <laugh>. Yeah. Back when, you know, when my dad was planning his retirement and working through those things. So yeah, you, you look at a spend down option. Our family had had to use that as well. I had grandparents, and that was something they had to utilize. And you look at medical divorce where they literally have to go to that extreme, which is crushing, just crushing emotionally to families. Speaker 2 00:17:13 But the, um, the, the fact that once that situation's dealt with and that family member has, has passed on and transitioned, now you're left with somebody else in a even bigger problem they were in, in the first place because they've, they've had to, you know, spin out of those assets. So, yeah. You know, I, I don't want to throw down the secret. I don't gotta put off the secret sauce, and like you said, everybody's different from where that is in that investment. A advice from here, but, um, what are the types of, of programs that someone, when they're, when they're talking with, when they're looking at alternatives to spending down and medical divorce and doing this off of this way, what are the types of products or things that sit out there? Are we talking about like in insurance retirement plans? Are we talking about stuff like that that kind of come into play? Or what are the, what should we get familiar with? Speaker 4 00:18:00 Yeah, I mean, I insurance if it, if we're talking about life insurance, I mean, that's a accounted asset. So if that has a cash value that's actually going to impact an applicant's financial eligibility, it needs to be taken into consideration. Um, I can give you a couple examples, but I just really wanna stress that no two cases should be traded the same. Yeah. There should really be no cookie cutter solutions. And unfortunately, there are firms out there that specialize, specialize in this type of planning that really do just try to cram everyone into one solution. Yeah. It's the most basic solution. And in a lot of cases, they actually structure it in a way that they're also paid a commission on top of a planning fee that they might be charging the family. So Okay. In compensated twice. And when they're utilizing that strategy, it's not always in the family's best interest. Speaker 4 00:18:55 So it's just really important to make sure that in whatever state you're in, you seek out a firm that's really doing what's right by the client rather than what's best for their firm. Um, there is a tool called a Medicaid compliant annuity, for example, and that's kind of the default cookie cutter solution that firms will steer people towards. Sometimes that's what we have to utilize as well. Sometimes it is the only option and it, yeah, it's, it beats the alternative of spending down $650,000. Right, right. But it might have some disadvantages in that situation that could be costly to the family. Yeah. So we always look for other options first to see if there's going to be a better solution for that particular situation. We've been able to utilize, um, revocable living trusts in certain ways. Uh, we've been able to utilize reverse mortgages in certain ways, whether the family already had a reverse mortgage or maybe they implemented one as part of the planning process working with us, um, we've been able to purchase properties, title them inside of an L L C, and essentially create a business that generates income, convert assets from assets to income. Speaker 4 00:20:10 Um, so you start to get kind of, um, you know, specific here where you really need to look at each state's Medicaid policy and how it's worded and what's allowed and not allowed, because what we can do in Arizona, we can't necessarily do in Oregon, Oregon that you mentioned previously, for example. Well, Speaker 2 00:20:27 And, and I gotta mention, it's, it's a revolving, it's a revolving door of things, right? These, these, these are constantly changing, whether it be, uh, they're looking to eliminate what someone might see as a loophole where the government wants to get more. Uh, but, but generally it sounds like this is just, this is good solid planning in a way that that takes into account that there's more than there's one person that really might need care and you've gotta plan off of that. Or maybe two people you're working, but there's gonna be somebody else left over <laugh> at the end of the day, and they've gotta be able to have those assets and those resources so that they don't both become dependent in that situation. Yeah. Uh, in the long run. So I, I absolutely applaud the forward look. You know, one, maybe one other question before we go into this, this last segment of the break is, what, what's a timeline when, when a family starts thinking it's time to sit down and talk to somebody, whether it's an inciting event that's happened in life, uh, like move must happen, didn't qualify, or while that's expensive, we're gonna have to figure out a way through this. Speaker 2 00:21:29 And they're just babbling through to the time, so the time they, they know they need to talk to you, to the time where they've got things kind of at least settled in a place where it's managing. Is there a general, is that, does that take, does it take weeks? Does it take months? Does it, does it take days? What, how long should, would a family expect that it's gonna take to start getting that plan down and start moving things into something that's more manageable for them in, in general? Is there, is there a general answer to Speaker 4 00:21:57 That? Yeah. I mean, if, if we are qualifying someone for the Medicaid program here in Arizona now because that is the right fit based on their situation, we can typically get through that process from start to finish in about nine weeks on average. Speaker 2 00:22:10 Wow. Okay. Speaker 4 00:22:12 You'll hear from, you'll hear out there from other firms or from the Medicaid office themselves that it might be five months or seven months, you know, really lengthy. But again, if you're working with a professional that really knows what they're doing and how to consolidate steps and expedite the process, unless there's something extenuating circumstances going on, there's really no need for it to take longer than about two to two and a half months. Um, if we're talking about planning in advance, because someone's not quite at the point of needing long-term care, yet maybe they need long-term care, but they're not medically eligible for the Medicaid program. There are medical requirements as well. If there are assets to protect, we always say the sooner you start planning the better, because even though we're not going to implement the specific asset protection plan right now, we can typically give guidance now about things to do and things not to do that are going to create a better financial outcome when the time does come. And by better financial outcome, I mean, spending less money out of pocket on long-term care. Yeah. So if you wanna protect as much as possible, then the sooner you start that planning process, the better. Speaker 2 00:23:20 Okay. I appreciate that. Well, that, that, um, okay, great job in breaking that down. That those truly difficult because if you've seen one parent project, right. You haven't seen one parent project. So, uh, appreciate that. Yeah. We're gonna take a quick break, uh, to highlight, uh, our, uh, the coffee company and the sponsorship that we do with them, and we will be right back with Katie Brennan and Stronghold Financial. Hey guys, uh, this is Tony at the Parent Projects podcast. And if you are powered by Coffee the way that I'm powered by coffee, I think you'll appreciate knowing a way that you can help the last lost and least of us that didn't have a great transition. You see, the Refuge Coffee Company is a social enterprise operated by Catholic charities of central and Northern Arizona, where they use this coffee and this business model to help homeless veterans at the Manna house transitional community get back on their feet, help a veteran turn a handout into a hand up by giving them the opportunity to earn your business purchase coffee [email protected]. Speaker 2 00:24:22 That's the refuge az.com. If you order six or more bags, shipping will be free. And if you tell 'em that parent projects sent you, I'm gonna send you a travel coffee mug. Thank you again, and let's get back to the show, everybody. Welcome back this week, uh, on the Parent Projects podcast in our live show. We are with Katie Brennaman of Stronghold Financial, and we are talking through those concerns and paying for long-term care and some options to that spend down that might have to happen, figuring out how you do that wisely in order to handle your entire family. Katie, again, thanks for joining us today. Uh, Speaker 4 00:25:04 Yeah, thank you. Back. Speaker 2 00:25:05 We're, uh, you know, what I'd like to kind of move through is, there's, there's a lot of questions I think that, that go through everybody's head. Uh, and, and so just to cherry pick, maybe one of the first ones is, uh, and how much, how much money? Let's see, what, what, in a retirement, what size of retirement portfolio, um, would start thinking about this? Do I have and, and, um, you know, and it, and what I, the, the age, we could probably go later, but at what level should I start thinking about it's worth starting to look at, at these types of things generally, Speaker 4 00:25:41 From my firm's perspective, if you're not a multimillionaire these days, you don't know that you can afford long-term care. I mean, really, it's only the uber wealthy <laugh> these days that can feel confident that they can stroke that check for an indeterminate period of time. Right? Yeah. Yeah. Um, so if you don't fit into that category, you need to make a plan. People, we, we call it long-term, long-term care financial planning. People will have a long-term care financial plan where they think, I know that I can afford to pay for my care out of pocket for 1, 2, 3, 4 years. Great. But again, what if you live longer than that? Yeah. Or what if there's a healthy spouse at home and spending down all of those assets would put them in a really financially uncomfortable position. So, um, if, if you're, if you're not the multimillionaire that can stroke that check for an unknown period of time, you've really gotta have a plan. Speaker 4 00:26:37 Um, and just know that you don't have to actually spend down your assets. Like the Medicaid department will tell you that you have to do, I compare it to calling the irs, you know, Tony, if you called the IRS today and you said, Hey, how can I save money on my tax bill next year? The person that answers the phone, number one probably isn't even qualified to answer that question for you. Right. That's not their expertise. Right. Um, number two, they're not allowed to tell you. It's, it's probably against the law. Some, some policy, some government policy or regulation. They can't tell you that information. Yeah. You have to find a CPA that isn't doing anything illegal. Right. If, if you work with the right one <laugh>, Speaker 2 00:27:18 They're Speaker 4 00:27:19 Utilizing how the IRS tax code is written to you an advantage. Right. And the same thing happens here. If you call up the Alltech office here in Arizona or the Medicaid department in whatever state you live in, the person that answers the phone probably isn't even going to know that it's possible to protect assets from being spent down. That's just not what they're trained to know. And they're not allowed to tell you, they're not even allowed to make referrals to firms like ours to get that kind of guidance. Um, and, and again, we're, we're not doing anything illegal. That's always a popular question is, is this even legal? Yes. I'm not interested in going to prison for committing fraud for your family. No offense. Right? Speaker 2 00:28:01 Right. Speaker 4 00:28:02 It's, it's just utilizing the Medicaid policy and how everything is written to that specific individual's advantage. Well, Speaker 2 00:28:12 And you're talking e at the federal level of taxes, it's 77,000 pages of tax code, 77,000 pages to work through all of that and understand it. Uh, if you're, if, if I, I can understand too, the same way that I, you know, I don't, I'm, I'm in real estate, right. As a, as a senior real estate expert, I understand that I'm licensed in that I'm, I spend time educating myself and staying up on that. But I'm not gonna tell you what financial products to pick up for, how to deal with the mortgages and what the mortgage industry looks like. Right. That's, that's out, that's outside of that. And so I guess I can see the government agencies not crossing the line into these license where people have licenses or giving legal advice if you're not an attorney or medical advice if you're not a doctor. Speaker 2 00:28:56 But on the other side, uh, the, just, it, it's good to understand. Um, I, well, you know, I guess one of the best ways we, we we're trying to answer that, that's what parent projects is trying to do. We're trying to catch those as well. We're trying to catch the analytics. You know, if you're watching this, make sure that you share this, uh, you know, be a part of this conversation. Get it out there so that people can see it, and understand then that they need to go see if you're in the, if you're in Arizona, you know, a stronghold financial, you're looking for companies like this, you're looking for organizations that can walk you through those alternatives in your respective state. Um, that'll be important. And I, and I think that's kind of the easiest way we can start solving that problem is, is by sharing the conversation to keeping the conversation going live. Speaker 4 00:29:42 Yeah, yeah. Speaker 2 00:29:44 No, go Speaker 4 00:29:45 Ahead. Just add to that, not not listening to the misinformation that's out there. Because as you start to navigate this journey that you're maybe on with your parent, your loved one, whoever it is, um, you're running into all kinds of professionals that serve the senior long-term care community in a variety of ways. And unfortunately, there is so much lack of information and misinformation out there that a lot of those people probably don't know that asset protection is possible when you qualify for the Medicaid program that you don't have to spend down that there's pretty much no such thing as being too rich for the Medicaid program in whatever state you're in. Yeah. So we hear all the time that people in different professions that a family family's interacting with are saying, that's not possible. That's against the law. You do have to spend down, you have too much income, you have too many assets, et cetera, et cetera. Speaker 4 00:30:38 And like, to your point, Tony, of, of not stepping outside of your lane and giving guidance about things that aren't really your specialty, you know, I'm not gonna be giving guidance on someone's Alzheimer's diagnosis because I'm not a doctor. Right. And those other individuals really shouldn't be giving guidance on the financial side of things. They're not trying to do harm by anyone. They're trying to be helpful, but they're sharing incorrect information, um, which unfortunately is just hard to find a lot of the time. So that's no fault of their own. Um, but anything that anyone can do to do their part, to spread the word about what is possible, uh, is crucial. Speaker 2 00:31:17 So when, when a family, when you do get that family or that call comes in, what, is there a, a most common question or a, a top question or anything you can think of mind that you guys get asked, uh, by those families that are, that recognize, wow, that is a lot more expensive than we planned for. You think you're doing so well, you think you plan for that and then you're like, 10 to $20,000 a month that doesn't, that's just not gonna pencil. We can't figure that out. Um, what, what do you guys see when they come in? Speaker 4 00:31:52 Yeah, the majority of the families that are referred to us have already been given some kind of, um, general overview of who we are and what we do and what's possible by the person who's connected them with us. So I think what we see most commonly is people come to us and, and, and say, I know that something is supposedly possible, but I don't really understand it. And is it really, I mean, that, that's really what it comes down to is, is people are so skeptical because they've heard all of these things. They've read all of these things. They've probably been doing all kinds of internet research themselves, trying to find information and resources. And what you run across is typically just the government jargon that makes no sense to anyone who's not familiar with those terms. Yeah, yeah. Um, or it's a lot of times just bad information, wrong information. So it's really a lot of educating the families about what the Medicaid long-term care program is, you know, the value that it provides for their loved one's unique situation, how much money it's going to save, and then what the eligibility looks like for their circumstances. Also, from both a medical perspective and a, a financial perspective. But people just, they don't realize that they don't have to spend down, they don't realize that they're not too rich for the Medicaid program. Speaker 2 00:33:15 I, and just putting in the context, the ease, it's okay to not have planned from that. Right? It, it is, it has become, it's a big number. It's an overwhelming number. I genuinely, I mean, if I, I don't think if we looked at what the total cost would be for all of us within that, my guess is that cost is going to exceed the amount of capital we even ha have collectively. So there's a, there's an imbalance there. We already know it costs, it's going to cost more than you're probably gonna be prepared for. So, Katie, again, I just can't, uh, can't tell you enough how much we appreciate you coming on and letting us know that there are options to that, explaining where that is, and giving us a little hope that tomorrow can be planned a little better than we are looking at today when we look at it. Anything, uh, where can we find you? Where, where can, uh, businesses find you or, or individuals and families find you guys? Speaker 4 00:34:07 Yeah, our, our website is www.strongholdfinn.com. Finn short for financial. Uh, we have a YouTube channel as well, that I believe is gonna be LinkedIn show notes. Yeah. Speaker 2 00:34:20 Yep. Got it. Will, Speaker 4 00:34:21 Um, if, if this is of interest to anyone, there are some videos on the YouTube channel that get into more detail about how the Medicaid program works and what's possible in terms of protecting assets and that sort of thing. And I would say, uh, those two places are, are probably the, the best way to start. Speaker 2 00:34:36 Awesome. I appreciate it. Well, again, Kay, thank you so much for joining us today and sharing your time, talents, and treasures with us on this Speaker 4 00:34:44 Topic. Thank you for having me. Speaker 2 00:34:51 Well, that's it for team this week, and thanks for joining us. If you've enjoyed the content, remember to subscribe and to share this episode on the app that you're using right now. You're reviews and your comments, they really help us expand our reach as well as our perspective. So if you have time, also drop us a note. Let us know how we're doing for tips and tools to clarify your parent project, simplify communication with your stakeholders, and verify the professionals that you choose. You can find us on YouTube, follow us on Instagram and Facebook. Thanks again for trusting us. Until our next episode, behold and be held. Speaker 1 00:35:23 Thank you for listening to this Parent Projects podcast production. To access our show notes, resources, or forums, join us on your favorite social media platform or go to parent projects.com. This show is for entertainment purposes only. Before making any decisions, consult a professional. This show is copyrighted by Family Media and Technology Group Incorporated and Parent projects, llc. Written permissions must be granted before syndication or rebroadcast.

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