Q: A friend of mine just took part in a program called Economic Check-Up. What she told me about her appointment sounds like something I could benefit from. Is that program still being offered?
A: Yes, Senior Concerns will be offering the Economic Check-Up program on April 14 at Senior Concerns Day Care Center, 401 Hodencamp Road in Thousand Oaks from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Appointments are required and can be made by calling 497-0189.
If you are 55 years old or older and your annual income is less than $29,425 for singles and $39,829 for couples — this program is for you.
In partnership with the National Council on Aging (NCOA) Senior Concerns is scheduling one-on-one appointments with senior advocates to review where your money goes every month and to provide you with resources that might help with some of these monthly expenses.
Don’t miss this opportunity to really see where you are spending your money and learn about various programs that are available to help stretch your budget.
Q: During a recent business trip my husband lost his wallet and I’m trying to replace the contents. This is a difficult job since he doesn’t remember everything that he carried. Please tell others to inventory what they carry with them in case they should have the need to replace a wallet’s contents.
A: This is something that I have addressed before but find that it does not hurt to repeat it on occasion. This is a difficult job. I’m not sure that most of us could accurately list the contents of our wallets from memory.
An inventory can serve two purposes: It will provide an accurate record of your wallet’s contents and give you an opportunity to “weed out” what you carry. Experts advise that a thinner wallet is safer as potential thieves would have less information and therefore less opportunity to defraud.
To do your inventory first set aside a block of time so that you will not be rushed and sit at a desk or table and empty your wallet of all its contents. Review each item to determine if this is something you need to carry with you or if it should be put away for safekeeping or if it should be disposed of.
Your Social Security card, for example, should not be carried with you. The Social Security Administration recommends it be kept in a safe place and carried only when you need to present it.
Next review this “to be disposed of group” again to double check that you no longer need these items. Now dispose of all these items that you no longer need — using a shredder to do this would be the best method.
The next step is to take all those items that you feel you still need but not in your wallet and put them with your other important papers.
Now take all the items that you feel should be carried in your wallet and create an inventory sheet. This can be done by paper and pencil or by photographing the front and back of each item that you are going to place back in your wallet.
If you do this by creating a list the list should include the following information for each item: the identity of the item (e.g. XYZ credit card or California driver’s license) the account or registration number, name of the person it is registered to, the expiration date, if applicable, and the number to contact to report if it is lost. Then date the list or the photographs of the contents and file it with your important papers.
Always update your inventory list when you change any of the contents of your wallet.
If you should ever lose your wallet or have it stolen you will find that the short amount of time it took to do the inventory was well worth it because you have all the information at your fingertips that you need to request replacement of the lost items.