Isn’t it interesting that most of us aren’t motivated to make a change or plan for the future until we’re faced with a life altering event – our own or one close to home? One of those decisions is planning for the care of a loved one or even ourselves when our circumstances require constant supervision or help with our daily basic activities. Fortunately, Long-Term Care Insurance can provide the means to have the support of in-home caregivers, assisted living, or facility care.
What is Long-Term Care Insurance?
Long-Term Care Insurance provides funds to help you cover long-term care costs in the same manner Health Insurance provides financial coverage for doctor’s visits and hospital bills. While the concept is similar, Long-term Care Insurance and Health Insurance are two very different types of insurance.
Health Insurance would likely provide coverage for doctor visits, hospitalization, and maybe even prescription medicines. When someone’s condition requires constant supervision or long-term care, Health Insurance is not likely to provide coverage for those services. Health Insurance is also not designed to cover the long-term care expenses for paralysis from an accident or stroke, Alzheimer’s, or the care needed as a natural result of aging.
Long-Term Care Insurance is designed to provide coverage where Health Insurance leaves off. When constant supervision or assistance with the basic activities of daily living like bathing, eating, toileting, dressing and moving about is necessary Long-Term Care Insurance would provide funds to help cover those care expenses.
Wondering how much care in your area costs?
The costs of long term care still remain high – nearly 70% of Americans will need long term care as they age. According to the Glenworth Annual Care Costs 2014 Survey, the average cost of facility care in Texas is $50,735.00 annually. To review the Glenworth results, click here.
How Can You Save on Long-Term Care Insurance?
Because you may not collect for decades to come, be sure to buy from a company that has been around for some time and is financially stable.
Find out if long-term care benefits are available through a group policy from your employer. Employers might subsidize the cost, lowering what you must pay.
Check whether you can add long-term care benefits as a rider on an existing life insurance or annuity policy. These “combination” arrangements can save because the insurance company gains operational savings that it can pass along to you.
Buy a policy with the longest waiting period you can afford. For example, choosing a 90-day period instead of a 30-day period can cut the premium by 30%. However, if you do need long-term care services, you should save some money to pay these costs until the waiting period ends.
If both spouses of a married couple are considering buying long-term care policies, look into buying one joint policy for both of you. Such a policy pays when either one needs care and can pay for both, if necessary, up to its benefit limits.
If you’re still looking to trim the premium further, consider buying a policy that will pay most, but not all, of the average nursing home costs in your area. For example, if a nursing home room now costs $120 per day, buy a policy that pays $100 per day. However, be sure to buy an inflation-protection provision.
Dean & Draper can assist you with comparing both benefits and costs. As with other types of insurance (and many other purchases), comparison shopping can save you money.
Dean & Draper is a Trusted Choice insurance agency representing over 200 insurance companies. For over 34 years we have offered a trusted freedom of choice to our clients. Contact Us.