How To Know If You Need Long Term Care Insurance
There’s some piece of advice among financial experts that should be well taken to heart: do not over-insure, and insure only based on your needs. If you’re still young, for example, you’re better off taking out a term life insurance policy and investing the rest of your savings in high-yielding financial instruments like the stock market.
This brings most of us to the single most important point: when should you take out a long-term care insurance policy?
Deciding on whether you need long-term care insurance depends, for the most part, on where you are in your finances. If you only have low income to speak of and you are already at the retirement age, then you’re better off staying at a nursing with Medicaid paying the cost of your stay. Since Medicaid is a federal and state program that is paying for nearly half the cost of America’s nursing homes.
But if you’re a reasonably financially well-off person, yet you don’t want old age getting in the way of your lifestyle, then you might ant to consider taking out a long-term care insurance policy. However, long term care insurance is not something you want to spend for, without considering the other items on your budget, because:
• You pay for high premiums
• Your premiums may increase over the years
• You pay for some expenses from out of your own pocket
• You lose benefits with a lapsed policy and without a non-forfeiture protection
There are some uncertainties in life that may make you think twice about long term care insurance. You might just meet your end in an accident. If that doesn’t happen, and hopefully it never does, here some things to consider, to determine if you really need long-term care insurance.
Your Family’s History
Does your family have a history of heart diseases, diabetes or Alzheimer’s? Did close relatives fall early because of those diseases?
Your Family’s Current Situation
If right now you needed help in getting dressed or in bathing, would any of your immediate relatives be available to help you out?
Your Own Finances
According to the United Seniors Health Cooperative, a non-profit organization based in Washington, DC, people should only consider long term care insurance IF they have (a) at least $75,000 in savings, or (b) at least $35,000 in annual income (in retirement).
The figures indicate that you should only think about long-term care insurance if you enough money that paying for the premiums does not affect your current lifestyle. If this isn’t the case, the best route to take is to put your money where it will earn interest, pay for professional healthcare only if needed, and if necessary, qualify for Medicaid.
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