Why We Fail To Plan for Long-Term Care

We don’t want to accept the fact that we are getting older and we may, sometime in the future, need long-term care.  Because we avoid thinking about this we don’t even consider how we will pay for it.

According to the Genworth Cost of Care Survey of 2019, 70% of Americans over the age of sixty-five (65) will eventually need some type of long-term care.  In addition, by the year 2040, 22% of the population will be over the age of sixty-five (65), which is a 10% increase from the year 2000.  According to the Genworth Survey more and more of us refuse to believe that we will ever need long-term care.

Look to your left and then your right.  At least 2 of the 3 of you will need some type of long-term care in your lifetimes.  Many people believe that Medicare will pay for their long-term care.  That is FALSE!  If you need long-term care, and the odds are that you will, you need to start planning for how to pay for it now.  If you have long-term care insurance, then depending on your policy, all or a part of your long-term care may be paid for.  If not, then start looking at your bank account and other assets, because that is how you are going to have to pay for your long-term care.  If you don’t have sufficient income and assets then the payer of last resort is Medicaid but this program has strict income and asset qualifications.

Just how much does long-term care costs?  Again according the Genworth Survey, the monthly average cost of a home health aid is $4,385; the average cost of an assisted living facility is $4,051 and the average cost of a nursing home is $8,517.  These are staggering costs given the fact that the average Social Security benefit is $1,503 per month.

Despite the vast amounts of information, most of us are not prepared for the costs associated with long-term care.  I can only conclude that we are all reluctant to face the possible loss of independence related to our age.  This leads to our sticking our heads in the sand and failing to plan for the possibility of needing long-term care.

Although not a pleasant topic to think about or discuss with your family, long-term care planning is an absolute necessity.  We are in the business of providing options for people in planning for their potential long-term care needs.  If you, a loved one or a client needs help figuring out their options, please think of us.  We can help and we are always happy to hear from you.

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