Long Term Care Insurance – Is It For Me??

Conversation with my son:

Me: Never put me in a nursing home. Just shoot me.

Son: OK, I get it. But I’d rather not spend my life in prison. Is there any other option?

Me:  I definitely want to die in my own bed. I might need some help to stay in my own home, I would be OK with that.

Son: I understand. Not to be nosy, but do you have savings to pay for care? I know I can’t afford it.

Me: Don’t worry, I have health insurance to take care of it.

Fast forward 20 years… Whoops!

Insurance agent: You’re kidding, right? I hope your mom is independently wealthy.

The reason you need to think about Long Term Care (LTC):

The reality is that 7 out of 10 people will require long term care at some point. At today’s costs, a year at a nursing home can cost over $100,000 (American Council for Aging). One projection (Genworth) is that by 2034 it will cost over $13,000 per month – I don’t know about you, but I expect to still be alive ten years from now.  Health insurance and Medicare will cover the doctor bills, but not residential care (such as a nursing home or assisted living), or in-home care (like a home health aide). LTC insurance will pay for the care, but not the doctor bills. So, you need both.

The high cost of care places immense financial strain on the person who needs it and/or their family. If you have extensive assets, you can be “self insured,” but many times, in order to use those assets you will have to sell them at the time you need the funds – even if it is not a good time to sell. It is not uncommon for people to sell off family homes and liquidate their retirement portfolios to afford assisted living. This can be tragic, particularly if you want to come home someday or leave those assets to your children. LTC insurance can make that desire a reality.

Medicaid can cover these costs, but you must fall below the program’s income and asset limits (basically, you can keep your home and $2,000). Our specially designed trust program (SafeGuard) protects your assets, so that if you want to take advantage of Medicaid without losing any of the quality of care, you can do it.

Decide… To look into LTC insurance – But be smart about it! All LTC plans are not the same. You’ll need some expert advice and answers. What exactly is covered? What are the requirements prior to coverage? Waiting period? Exclusions, renewability? How much would I be on the hook for in addition to the premium?

The best way to start…Be very specific about what you want in your old age, being as reasonable and realistic as you can. Think not just of lifestyle and finances, but what happens if you need long term care. You may not have all of the answers, but you probably have some feelings about how you’d want to be taken care of — whether that’s in your home, or in a particular assisted living facility.

Like all insurance, long-term care policies get more expensive the longer you wait to purchase one. Buying a new policy at 68 won’t be cheap, but it will be much cheaper than doing so at 73. Even that will be cheaper than just waiting to see how much care will cost when you finally do need it.

Should the time come…Long Term Care Insurance will serve you and your family like an aggressive fortress of protection rather than a flimsy, inadequate shield. It protects your life’s work, worth and assets, securing your financial security and shielding heirs from the economic hardship and emotional strains of long term care responsibilities.  You see, you have a choice, now, to decree the terms of your care and your loved ones quality of life as you age, gracefully.

Get Timely Financial Strategies To Grow Your Cabbage!

More Posts