The Elderly Customer

It’s a fact of life that, as baby boomers grow older, businesses will encounter more and more elderly customers.

Customers in their 70’s, 80’s and 90’s bring a wealth of experience to buying and ownership. They have the security to afford what they want and the ‘know how’ to find it.payday loans These customers can also bring unique challenges for businesses.

We have received calls from members who are being criticized, usually by the extended family of older customers, over deals they have made.

The complaints sometimes deal with issues of ‘capacity’. For example, the family feels the elderly customer was not able to make the ‘right’ decision, or has made a ‘bad’ deal.–rick_deliz-es.html
In many cases, it may just be that the adult children, and other family members, are unhappy that their aged relative is ‘spending their inheritance’!

How are Businesses supposed to treat their elderly customer?

With respect. They have contributed their entire life to our society and its economy and have the right to make a purchasing decision like any adult.

How are Businesses supposed to respond to the family?

With caution. Remember, they are not your customer, the buyer is. Because of privacy concerns, there may be little you can even discuss or disclose to the family, unless the buyer gives you permission, preferable in writing, to do so.

On the other hand, in some cases, the family may be able to produce legal documents, court orders or ‘powers of attorney’ that have some bearing on the issue of your customer’s mental ‘capacity’. If that is the case, make a copy of the documentation and call your industry association or attorney.

(This is not legal advice, if you need legal advise, please contact an attorney)

About Monty King
Monty King has worked at the Oregon Legislature and ran political campaigns, graduating from the University of Oregon with a degree in Public Affairs in 1978 (while working at the Oregon Legislature) He is a 3 time Viet Nam Veteran.

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