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Long Term Care Insurance – To BUY or Not to BUY?

I get questions often about Long Term Care coverage: “Should I buy it?” or “Should I buy it now or wait?” and many more.  After customers research the policy, one of their main objections is that it’s too expensive.  However, I tell them … it’s MUCH MORE COSTLY NOT to purchase it.  Honestly, without Long Term Care, it would wreck your financial future!

Yes, long-term care insurance is not cheap, but medical insurance and Medicare typically do not cover that particular type of care, and it is incredibly expensive. The 2017 Genworth Cost of Care Survey lists the national median cost for a private room in a nursing home as $267 a day, which is $8,121 per month, and $97,455 per year. As you can see, if you need that care, your money could disappear very quickly.

And, unfortunately, you probably will need long-term care. On its website, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says:

  • Someone turning age 65 today has almost a 70% chance of needing some type of long-term care services and supports in their remaining years.
  • Women need care longer (3.7 years) than men (2.2 years).
  • One-third of today’s 65-year-olds may never need long-term care support, but 20% will need it for longer than five years.

Now that you are convinced (and I hope you are), there are a few things to consider when buying long-term care insurance:

Purchase it with your partner. Insurance companies offer discounts to couples who are married. You could save up to 30%.

Consider shared care. You can purchase a feature that allows couples to share the benefits of each other's policies. For example: If Mr. and Mrs. Smith each buy $200,000 in benefits and Mr. Smith needs long-term care, he can use all of his $200,000 and then tap into Mrs. Smith's policy, which, if untouched, could provide another $200,000 in benefits.

Don’t forget inflation coverage. Long-term care insurance has its own inflation rate, and it typically rises faster than the national inflation rate.

We can shop around for you. Since we are an independent agency, we have many choices with first-rate companies who are competitive in this Long Term Care market space.  If you're like most people, you don't even know what coverage looks like. We can help you decide what your monthly benefits would be, and how they compare to the costs of long-term care in our area!

Buy before your birthday. Long-term care insurance rates are based on your age. You'll save money if you buy before your next birthday.

Learn about any possible tax write-offs. If you are a business owner, or have high health care costs, your long-term care insurance premiums may be tax deductible.

Let us help you navigate the maze of choices! Long-term care insurance is complex. There are hundreds if not thousands of different kinds of long-term care policies offered by hundreds of different insurance companies. Let us help you navigate through the confusion.

I strongly advise that you investigate the merits of a policy. Consider it portfolio insurance; after all, you’re protecting your finances from potentially devastating damage.

Great companies, great service and nearly 50 years of insurance experience makes us one of the top agencies in this area and we’re ready to help you with your Long Term Care coverage or any other insurance coverage you may need.  Feel free to EMAIL us at info@BentonWhite.com or TEXT or CALL – 615.377.1212.  We’re always ready to earn your business!

Portions of this article was presented in KIPLINGER MAGAZINE ONLINE in March, 2018.  

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