What is the role of a Daily Money Manager?

By Roxanne Cheney

Since 2009 I’ve been a Professional Organizer, helping people clear clutter and organize belongings to create a cleaner, tidier, safer, and more pleasant and efficient home. I love serving as a bridge between the life someone lives and the life they want to live. I also cherish my role as a Daily Money Manager (DMM). I can hear you now thinking, “Your role as a what?

The short answer is that a DMM is an administrative assistant, educator, and advocate who assumes a client’s basic, yet often irksome, financial duties.  Generally speaking, DMMs manage the personal administrative and financial business of individuals and families.  Tasks usually include mail sorting, bill paying, checkbook balancing, budgeting, expense and income tracking, and document management. Often services also involve conducting investment and insurance reviews, negotiating with creditors, keeping track of assets, and coordinating with other professionals such as the client’s attorney and financial planner.

It’s important to note that a DMM is a part of your financial team, but doesn’t replace other members. Like most DMMs, I’m not an attorney, certified financial planner or advisor, social worker, or tax preparer.  And while some DMMs are also accountants, I am not.

Who needs a DMM?  Many DMMs work with older people who can no longer handle certain aspects of money management.  I, for one, especially enjoy serving this segment of our community who has trouble keeping track of bills and financial documents, often forget to pay bills, cannot write checks because of arthritis or other health problems, may have trouble getting to the bank, can no longer manage money or finances, and are susceptible to financial scams.

But it’s not only seniors who benefit from the services of a DMM.  Busy professionals who don’t have the time or desire to deal with their finances are a growing segment of the DMM clientele, as are those with physical ailments (such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) who have trouble organizing their affairs.

Last week I had the privilege of attending the annual conference of the American Association of Daily Money Managers in Nashville, Tennessee.  This year’s event (November 8-10) drew 135 professional DMMs from around the country including several, like me, for whom this was a first. Through workshops, seminars, and keynotes speakers, we learned new skills and gained insights from the best in the business.

During general and breakout sessions I learned about growing and enhancing my business with in-depth presentations on topics such as Medicare and the Affordable Care Act; practical guidelines for serving as a fiduciary and working with attorneys; helping aging parents deal with adult children; and much more.

The conference wrapped up Sunday afternoon with Phillip Van Hooser’s entertaining and inspiring presentation on “5 Things You Need to Remember for Making Successful Decisions.”

I flew home from Nashville realizing, yet again, what a pleasure and a privilege it is to serve in this dynamic, growing industry.

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