How to Financially Plan for Any Possible Long-Term Care Needs

How to Financially Plan for Any Possible Long-Term Care Needs

Hazel Bridges, Aging Wellness

Gracefully Greying explains that with the increasing costs of long-term care, it can be difficult to know where you stand financially or even how to begin planning. And while this can be an incredibly overwhelming task, it’s critical to make sure you or your loved one has a plan in place in order to continue to age gracefully.

Determine the Type of Care You Want

How you wish to spend your retirement is up to you. Today, many seniors are opting to age in place or are moving into assisted living facilities. There are options. Which type of care you choose should be determined on your needs and what you can afford. Looking at your current lifestyle habits and your family history is a great way to help predict what type of long-term care you may need in the future.

After determining what you are predisposed to, decide what living situation is your best option. On average, an home health aide costs $20/hour, adult day care costs $68/day, assisted living apartments cost $3,628/month, and nursing homes cost $253/day. As you can see, the costs add up fast. To help save money for you or a loved one’s long-term care, see if there are any family members who might be able to help out, and check to see what your community offers. Keep in mind, however, that if you’re making arrangements on someone else’s behalf, such as an aging parent or grandparent, you may be required to present a Power of Attorney.

Know What You’re Covered For

Many seniors plan to rely on Medicare, but in the event that you or a loved one need any long-term care treatment for illness or injury, Medicare will not be enough. In fact, for a nursing home visit, coverage is only 80 percent for 100 days with a diagnosis. Supplemental insurance can help bridge the remaining 20 percent, but it won’t cover for a longer amount of time, nor will it help cover any at home health aides or assisted living expenses. In most cases, surgery, dental care, and eye exams are not covered, either. For a complete breakdown on what is and isn’t covered, you can visit Medicare.gov online.

Long-Term Care Insurance

If your savings and assets don’t add up to thousands and thousands of dollars, chances are that you will be unable to afford your long-term care out of pocket. One of the best ways to bridge the gaps in Medicare’s coverage is through long-term insurance.

With the rising cost of premiums and insurance, many people can be turned off by long-term care insurance. Much like car insurance, LTC insurance is fantastic if you end up using it, but if not, it can be a waste of money. However, it is definitely something worth looking into. Talk to your doctor to see if they foresee any potential illness or injury risks in your health to help decide if it is worth the investment. Annuities are another great option if you need to cover costs, especially when paired with LTC insurance. They provide a steady supply of money, which is the perfect option if you have set monthly expenses.

Consider a Reverse Home Mortgage or Selling Your Home

If you or a loved one are planning on aging in place, a reverse home mortgage can be a great option to help you pay the bills. One of the many benefits of a reverse home mortgage is the flexible payment options, according to Reverse Funding. They can be paid in monthly increments, as a lump sum, or as a line of credit. Be sure to weigh the pros and cons of a reverse mortgage to see if this is the right choice for you. If aging in place isn’t an option, you can fund a move into assisted living or a nursing home by selling your home. Do your research to determine the value of your home.

Ahead of the Curve

Planning for the future can be an intimidating process, but it’s too important to let slip by. And with the rising costs of long-term care, it is more important than ever to plan ahead. Taking the time to look at your financial future today will ensure you have access to the best care when you need it.

Photo courtesy of Pexels.

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