The Boomerater™ Report: Week Ending Feb. 1

Add your voice to our weekly advisory of useful tips for boomers

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It’s time to speak up and out! As the online community grows, boomers and retirees are sharing their knowledge and experiences as never before. We’re partnering with one new collaborative site, Boomerater.com, that provides answers to questions across financial, consumer, and lifestyle categories. Check out some current posts below and then join the community by clicking on the highlighted links, adding your own answers, or posing new questions. Each week The Boomerater Report will feature a selection of the best posts. Say that The Best Life sent you!

Financial

Q. I've heard there are some expenses you can pay directly for a family member without being subject to paying a gift tax. I am especially interested in tuition for my children and medical expenses for my parents


A. You can pay for college tuition as long as you pay the bills directly to the college. A. School and medical bills are OK - but some other expenses are not. For example, if you pay for your grandson's music lessons or help pay to have an addition built on your daughter's home, the amount you contribute will be subject to the gift tax.

Housing & Community

Q. I want to sell my time share in Florida but am afraid I won’t make my money back. What is the best way to sell a time share?

A. You’ll probably only get about 1/2 of what you paid. But if you used it for several vacations you can look at the time you spent there as time you would have paid to stay at resort hotels. You might have luck selling it through the Time Share Users’ Group website.

Travel

Q. My wife and I are very active and are looking for trip ideas or companies that specialize in active vacations. We plan to go on our own, but would consider traveling with other active boomers.

A. Take a look at ElderTrek. I took ElderTrek's "Hidden Treasures of South America" trip and had an unbelievable time. The guides were fantastic, very familiar with the area. Everything was included, so we knew the price up front - no surprises. ElderTrek caters to boomers (50+) and the groups are small (no more than 16 people).

Health & Fitness

Q. I can't afford the rising costs of my prescriptions. I have friends in the same boat who have stopped taking their meds, or are splitting pills, or are taking them every other day. I know this can be dangerous so I'm looking for ways to save on prescription drugs.

A. Whatever you do, don't change how often you take your medications. Check out the price at your local grocery store pharmacy for generics. The cost of my meds went from a $20 co-pay PER MONTH at a national drug store chain to $9.99 for 3 months at the grocery. For two prescriptions I am saving almost $400 per year.

A. You will need to have your doctor convert your 30-day prescriptions to 90 days to take advantage of the supermarket pharmacy deals.

And here’s The Best Life question of the week:

Recession belt-tightening is boosting multi-generation households as families look for ways to cut costs. Are you part of such a household or considering one, and what’s your advice to others who may be thinking about it? Go to Boomerater.com to give us your advice.