The rising cost of long term care can be intimidating, however, that should not be reason enough for you to disregard planning for it. In fact, this should be your motivation to start formulating a plan for long term care as early as now.
It is innate in people to shun thoughts about getting old, becoming ill and being dependent on others for help, this is one of the reasons why most would opt to put long term care planning on hold. However, not thinking about it now doesn’t lessen the possibilities that you might it need it in the future.
Typically, a person would want to maintain independence, good health and financial stability when the golden years come. The same probably goes for you. It is important to note though that when long term care needs suddenly arise and you are not ready, it can have great implications on the areas above. The effects could be drastic. Indeed, it pays to have a good and sound long term care plan.
Other reasons why it’s essential to plan are the following:
Elderly Population Growth
By 2035, the number of the elderly aging 65 and beyond is estimated to grow to 77 million. As the number of old people grows, the higher the possible need for long term care. Furthermore, you should take into consideration that about 70% of people aging 65 years old or more would require long term care.
Birthrate is going down, thus, families are now getting smaller. This can result to a growth in the number of older people. Meanwhile 40% of the population is single, and often times most of them don’t have partners or children that can take care of them. If this persists, then people needing long term care will likely grow. And one of them could be you.
The Effect of Unpreparedness to your Family
If you are caught unprepared in facing a need for long term care, instinctively, you would turn to your family. Loved ones will no doubt do their best to provide you with care, however, this can have drawbacks on their end.
Long term care requires time. If your family devotes their time in taking care of you, they might need to put their careers on hold. This can result to a decrease in their income which will result to financial strain. Of course, you wouldn’t want that for your children, relatives or loved ones.
If you fail to plan when it comes to long term care, it can greatly affect the state of your finances. Long term care services are hefty, and if you don’t have a plan say, an insurance policy, it can eat off a huge chunk of your nest. Worst case scenario would be your assets and funds being depleted.
Of course, you are in a rush to receive care. Therefore, you might need to pay huge sums outright. Furthermore, since you are in haste, shopping for different programs, services and rates is no longer to your advantage.
What about Government Programs?
If you want comprehensive long term care coverage, it is not advised that you rely solely on programs set out by the government. Government programs like Medicare may cover long term care under strict conditions. Usually, the coverage is very limited and may still result to out-of-pocket payments on your end should you need care that’s way beyond what is covered.
Medicaid is the federal program that is more geared towards long term care. However, you need to meet a certain asset criteria. Typically, your assets have to be close to depletion before you’ll be eligible for benefits.
Government programs can help with long term care, that’s true. However, what they offer is very limited and might be short of your actual needs.
All these factors boil down to one thing: security. Planning for long term care is your first step to ensuring that you have the best quality of life in the future, most likely in your elderly years.