Who Needs LTC Insurance?
If you can afford long-term care insurance, you should probably consider it. Why? Because the cost of long-term care, should you need it, can quickly deplete your life’s savings. For instance, having a home health aide visit just three days a week can cost more than $20,000 annually. Full-time nursing home care, the most expensive type of care, now averages $69,000 to $78,000 per year. In some regions of the country, like the Northeast, the cost may be twice that amount.
While financial considerations cannot be understated, long-term care insurance isn’t only about money. It’s also about peace of mind. Having it ensures you’ll have access to first-rate care when you need it. It also means you won’t have to be dependent on others or be a burden to your children.
What are the odds you’ll need long-term care insurance? Greater than you might imagine. There’s about a 70 percent chance you’ll need some type of long-term care after age 65. And long-term care services are not just for older people. A young or middle-aged person who has been in an accident or suffers from a debilitating illness may very well require long-term care services. In fact, 40 percent of patients receiving long-term care are under age 65.
If you can afford to pay for care without significantly impacting your assets, you may not need long-term care insurance. Conversely, if your assets, not including your home, are less than $80,000 if you’re married (or $30,000 if you’re single), you may not be able to afford the premiums. But If you’re somewhere in between, long-term care insurance should be part of the discussion the next time you sit down with Paul to review your financial plans.