First Command Reports: Military Families Feeling Financially Stretched by Elder Care

First Command Financial Behaviors Index® reveals that middle-class
service members are spending an average of $1,342 per month on
care
for elderly family members

FORT WORTH, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Elder care costs are continuing to test the fiscal health of America’s
career military, where higher-than-expected expenses are weighing on the
financial confidence of the service member families who provide this
care.

The First Command Financial Behaviors Index® reveals that 36 percent of
middle-class military families (commissioned officers and senior NCOs in
pay grades E-5 and above with household incomes of at least $50,000) are
currently or anticipate providing care for an elderly parent or other
family member.

Military families are currently or anticipate providing elder care in a
variety of settings, most commonly in the home (54 percent in their own
home and 42 percent in the elderly person’s home). Respondents expect to
provide care by paying for:

  • home care services (18 percent)
  • nursing home care (8 percent)
  • health care services (7 percent)

The cost of providing this care can be sizable. The 20 percent of survey
respondents who are already caring for an elderly family member estimate
their average monthly outlay at $1,342. Forty percent of people in this
subgroup say costs are more than they expected, a revelation that is
reflected in their financial attitudes.

About one in three families (34 percent) who are currently or anticipate
caring for an elderly family member say they feel extremely or very
financially stretched month to month. In contrast, just 25 percent of
all military respondents say they feel extremely or very financially
stretched.

“Again this year, the results of our annual survey of elder care costs
underscore the financial stresses that caring for an older family member
can create for our men and women in uniform,” said Scott Spiker, CEO of
First Command Financial Services, Inc. “Caregiver costs are higher than
many people expect. The good news is that almost half of military
families who currently provide elder care took steps to prepare for
these costs, and 36 percent say they work with a financial advisor. As
more military families find themselves taking on the added
responsibility of elder care, we expect to see growing demand for
knowledgeable financial planning support.”

About the First Command Financial Behaviors Index®

Compiled by Sentient Decision Science, Inc., the First Command Financial
Behaviors Index® assesses trends among the American public’s
financial behaviors, attitudes and intentions through a monthly survey
of approximately 530 U.S. consumers aged 25 to 70 with annual household
incomes of at least $50,000. Results are reported quarterly. The margin
of error is +/- 4.3 percent with a 95 percent level of confidence. http://www.firstcommand.com/fbi/

About Sentient Decision Science, Inc.

Sentient Decision Science was commissioned by First Command to compile
the Financial Behaviors Index®. SDS is a behavioral science and
consumer psychology consulting firm with special vertical expertise
within the financial services industry. SDS specializes in advanced
research methods and statistical analysis of behavioral and attitudinal
data.

About First Command

First Command Financial Services and its subsidiaries, including First
Command Advisory Services, First Command Bank and First Command
Financial Planning, assist American families in their efforts to build
wealth, reduce debt and pursue their lifetime financial goals and
dreams—focusing on consumer behavior as the first and most powerful
determinant of results. Through knowledgeable advice and coaching of the
financial behaviors conducive to success, First Command Financial
Advisors have built trustworthy, lasting relationships with hundreds of
thousands of client families since 1958.

First Command Financial Services, Inc., is the parent of First
Command Financial Planning, Inc. (Member
SIPC,
FINRA),
First Command Advisory Services, Inc., First Command Insurance Services,
Inc. and First Command Bank. Financial planning services and investment
products, including securities, are offered by First Command Financial
Planning, Inc., a broker-dealer. Financial planning and investment
advisory services are offered by First Command Advisory Services, Inc.,
an investment adviser.
Insurance products and services are offered
by First Command Insurance Services, Inc., in all states except Montana,
where as required by law, insurance products and services are offered by
First Command Financial Services, Inc. (a separate Montana domestic
corporation). Banking products and services are offered by First Command
Bank. In certain states, as required by law, First Command Insurance
Services, Inc. does business as a separate domestic corporation.
Securities products are not FDIC insured, have no bank guarantee and may
lose value. A financial plan, by itself, cannot assure that retirement
or other financial goals will be met. First Command Financial Services,
Inc. and its related entities are not affiliated with, authorized to
sell or represent on behalf of or otherwise endorsed by any federal
employee benefits programs referenced, by the U.S. government, or the
U.S. armed forces.

Contacts

First Command Financial Services, Inc.
Mark Leach, 817-569-2419
Media
Relations
msleach@firstcommand.com