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Help! Been living with Dad 8 yr. After going from Penthouse to poorhouse and homeless due to extended illness. Got my disability, repaid Dad & contribute every mo. to household checking account in both our names. Dad contributes his $938 SS. I deposit $1K (varies). I pay directly for my two dogs' expenses and my own personal expenses. Dad has Medicaid but I have Medicare Advantage and have to pay co-pays for specialist plus purchase prescriptions that are non formulary. Household account pays for all household, yard, car (we own together) + unexpected expenses such as the hurricane, car repairs. Despite my superpower of bargaining (Dad calls me Private Benjamin), we were forced to take out a reverse mortgage and only have $11,000 left in the credit line. We withdraw from $1000 to $1500 monthly. When I turned to cousins my dad helped in their early years and who took me in when I was homeless, told me to "create a budget and live within it," which does not fit our circumstances. I have No family member who contributes, and my sister is a vindictive skinflint. when she and dad go out for a modest breakfast or lunch, she makes dad pay for his meal. I'm looking and thinking of ways to bring in more money, like an equity loan, because dad does not want to sell the house and hopes to die in this house. it would break his heart and mine if if we were forced to sell. The burden of preparing the house would fall to me. dad would be forced to move in with my sister and I would be homeless unless I could find a Golden Girls type situation where several of us pool our resources. We have $15,000 in credit card debt, Half of which is at 0% interest. We were scammed after the hurricane and also had a car accident and repair which ran up thousands of dollars in bills. Despite our best efforts to prove that the free inspection and triage promised by this contractor who put a lien on Dad's house, dad was forced to pay $1,500 in settlement. Fraud police said contract was Ironclad that Dad signed and that since he and I seem so alert, no judge would find in our favor even though I was hurt and on pain meds that kept me bedridden and dad was traumatized after staying in a shelter. Dad still has life insurance, which he considers his personal money. We requested updated statements, an estimate $25,000. I'm terrified dad will blame me even though these were household expenses and often purchases he asked me to make. We live frugally and never go out to eat or to any show or event. My disability is partly due to severe anxiety and depression for which I take prescriptions. Whenever Dad and I talked about finances, He says nasty and hurtful things. He's expecting me to type out a financial sheet, and I'm not only terrified at his possible response but if he shares it with my sister, this will become a nightmare. I've talked to my sister about how dad is a bit of a spendthrift, and she knows this to be true, but she hates me and has always been jealous of me. I'm terrified and desperate. That's still too sharp for me to try to skip over any figures. He no longer uses the computer and when he tries he claims I changed the password, no I haven't. He always blames Electronics like his headset and TV when they don't work even though it's almost always something he did that I fix. please note my dad has always loved me and I've been his favorite, and he truly appreciates all the hard work I've done including creating a beautiful butterfly garden that has enhanced our joy and the value of the house if we sell it. There is $67,000 in equity in the house, but that will go down to $65,500-$6K after August. Please help me to prepare a document

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It is my goal to help you by giving facts about finances. Sorry to neglect the compassionate parts which you surely deserve, and my heart goes out to you.
If I read your story on GoFundMe, I would want to give due to your extreme hardships endured, Private Benjamin! There is no need to defend yourself in the ways you have handled your money and Dad's money.

Two thoughts:
1) Property taxes-I don't know if you still pay those if you have a reverse mortgage. But I read somewhere that after a local disaster, the tax assessor may reassess your home's value and save some money due for taxes.
2) Can you rent out a room?
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Thank thank you for your kind and constructive response. Dad wants to live with my sister if he has to leave this house. That's his decision and I'm sure that's what my sister wants, too. She'll likely take his entire social security check for room and board. That's what she did for our mother. Great credit scores for both of us because I've managed finances well and always pay bills on time or ahead of time. I comparison shop and use apps online to find the best deal and off and get tons of stuff free, so I'm known as Private Benjamin. When I got my social security disability, I repaid my dad which was a lump sum that helped us live for quite some time. It was disaster + unexpected expenses that ran up credit cards, not extravagances. In 2012, right after emergency hospital stay where I almost died, two of my beloved dogs died suddenly. I buried them out back and my psychiatrist urged me to plant a butterfly garden, which I did so with seeds and cheap plants and free wild plants and gifts from other people with Gardens. The only expenses have been out of my pocket for fertilizer or dirt + a few plans to replace those that died from the hurricane and freeze. It is increase the value of the house and brings my my dad and me incredible Joy, especially since we are both housebound. I've researched online options for trust to avert Medicaid repayment, and found that "undue hardship" is what I need which told me I need experienced disability, Trust attorney. I got will and Irrevocable Trust software program, so we'll only have to incorporate that advice and then have final review before filing. I have dealt with many hardships in my lifetime and fully expect to face them again, but a 95 year old man they lose the will to live if forced to sell his home. My sister is nice to him just cheap and not as clean as he and I are. I don't plan to provoke her and have low expectations. I'm going to do everything I can pragmatically and efficiently but also Innovatively work on possible income options. I've done this several times in my lifetime and I'm famous for turning adversity into opportunity or is Dale Carnegie said, lemons into lemonade.
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You need to have an acct of your own. If Dad ever needs Medicaid, they may count the whole account as his. You will need to prove otherwise.
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Maltesemom Jul 30, 2018
I've I've had my own checking account since 1977 with the same bank where we have the household account so I can transfer back and forth as necessary. The problem is that once I contribute to the household and pay my medical and Essentials, I have nothing left
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Do not provide Dad with a financial sheet that includes your income and finances.
Better yet, do not provide a financial sheet.
Give Dad a list of the expenses. His expenses, vs. his income.

How is it that $67 K equity in the house "but that will go down to $65,500 K-
$6 K after August?

Income looks like $1,938, plus money withdrawn from equity line of credit up to $1500/mo. = $3438./ month. You both are living beyond your means. FACT.

If you cannot stop borrowing to live, charging on credit cards, and live on a budget of $1,938, you cannot keep the house.

There are no sound financial plans available that include borrowing, living on credit in order to live and provide basic everyday expenses. Except in emergencies, as was the case with you and Dad, for a time. That time is past, you are in debt, spending has to stop.

My advice to you is, treat the money you add to the expenses of the house as rent, and get financial advice to extricate your finances from Dad's, as you get financial counseling. (Give the "rent" to pay off any debt of his). Do not be dismayed if the financial planner advises you to sell the house, or file bankruptcy.

And, stop spending. Including the garden.
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Maltesemom Jul 30, 2018
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You really need to see at least a financial advisor and possibly an attorney for help. There are so many things in “the mix” here, it would be impossibly time consuming and confusing for any of us to isolate and advise on each of them.

Don't expect your father to agree to anything once he discovers you are hiding credit card debt, or hiding anything else regarding finances from him. You need to be upfront with him about it all. He needs to know.

It’s wonderful that you have constructed butterfly gardens, etc for him. But right now, you need to face reality and get down to brass tacks to see what can be done about your financial issues. They are not self-healing and you need to be proactive. Your local area Agency on Aging might be able to provide financial counselors. Call them. Our AOA is located in the county jobs and family services office.

If your sister is angry and jealous, she most likely will not make the best caregiver for Dad. I know he wants to die in his own home and you, as well don’t want to move. I understand. But sometimes we need to put on our Big People pants and face the music. Make plans for what will happen if you do lose the house. Section 8 housing? Don’t involve yourself in a brouhaha with Sis. It will prove fruitless and unproductive.

If your credit card payments are late or nonexistent, you may have a bad credit score. That means you won’t get financing for another house or even an apartment without credit counseling or debt consolidation. Speak with your bank to see what your options are. “Bargain hunting” is great. I myself shop exclusively at Aldi for their prices. However, a cents off on a dollar isn’t much in your big picture.

Call for help tomorrow. Find a financial advisor. Call the Agency for Aging. It’s no shame to need help. It’s time to do it now before things get worse.
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