In 2009, roughly 1.5 million Americans filed for bankruptcy. Most of them were middle-class, well-educated homeowners, just like you. Do you know what caused most of those bankruptcies? It wasn’t a fancy adjustable rate mortgage or backlash from the financial crisis. According to a study published in the August 2009 American Journal of Medicine, more than 60% of bankruptcies have their root cause in medical bills.
“Unless you’re a Warren Buffett or Bill Gates, you’re one illness away from financial ruin in this country,” says Harvard researcher and lead author Steffie Woolhandler, M.D. Or, as one of my clients, a physician, said to me, “You are just one step away from the banana peel!”
The bottom line is that funding ever-increasing healthcare costs is almost certainly one of your biggest risks – if not the biggest – in retirement. And since we know it is very difficult to take effective action once you are already in financial crisis, it is important that you answer the following questions before you retire.