Ron Lieber, in his NY Times column, advises individuals to spend their inheritance rather than striving to leave it to their children and he gives advice on how to accomplish this. His article begins as follows:
Once people hit retirement, they do not know how long they will live or how long their money will last. Still, the vast majority of retirees with children cling to an intention to leave something behind, even though many of those offspring have no expectation of receiving an inheritance.
This parental instinct might seem loving and generous, but there is another way to look at it. All of this devotion to the next generation may also be the height of foolishness. After a few decades of spending well into the six figures to rear and educate each child and increasingly, years more backstopping young adults who are not quite financially independent, the parents probably ought to cease feeling this sense of obligation. Far better to spend their retirement money in the present on making meaningful memories with family members or on top-notch care that can help make aging more comfortable and graceful — in their own home if possible.
So how can we middle-aged kids convince our parents that they are officially off the hook?