Age Old Answers: What Age Should You Buy Long Term Care Insurance?

Buy Long Term Care Insurance

Your retirement is going great. You ended up saving plenty of money to live out your golden years in peace. That is until an unexpected nursing home stay decided to take a nice chunk out of your finances. Below the article can find the buy long term care insurance

That happens to the best of people. Without buy long term care insurance, staying in a nursing home can hurt the wallet. That’s why it’s so important to prepare for the future ahead of time.

You’ve got to buy insurance while you’re still young and qualified to get it. The question is, at what age should you begin looking around at different policies?

Keep reading to find out.

What Is Long-Term Care Insurance? 

When the time comes when you can no longer take care of yourself, you’ll have no choice but to go to an assisted living home. It’s either that or hire a nurse to stay in your home with you. 

Either way, it’s going to be expensive, and Medicare doesn’t cover it. Medicaid will, but only if you’re in dire straits as far as your finances go. That’s where your long-term care insurance kicks in. 

What Does the Policy Cover? 

Long-term care insurance covers extended stays in an assisted living facility. When we say extended stay, we mean about three months or more. 

It typically begins to pay out when you can no longer do one of six things for yourself. These things are eating, bathing, dressing, getting on and off the toilet, getting in and out of a chair or bed, and controlling your bladder functions. 

Some policies will also allow you to hire someone to take care of things that aren’t a medical necessity such as chores, taking care of pets, helping you take your medications, money management, and grocery shopping. 

If you only need someone to pop in and check on you a few times a day to make sure you’re doing okay, your policy may handle that. Those who want to stay at home for as long as possible might be able to use their policy to pay for home modifications like railings. 

Long-Term Care Insurance Cost 

Now it’s time for the real question. What are the long-term care insurance costs? How much you pay will be determined by a couple of factors. 

The first one is age. The longer you wait to open a policy, the more expensive it’s going to get to cover yourself.

Nine times out of ten, women pay more for this type of insurance than men. That’s because they typically live longer, which means it’s more likely that they’ll have to file a claim at some point. 

If you’re married, you can get a lower premium. Most insurance companies set their own prices. That’s why it’s so important to shop around and get quotes from a bunch of different places. 

As is the case with most insurance companies, the more coverage you spring for, the more you’re going to have to pay.

Keep in mind that just because your insurance company gives you a quote to start out, doesn’t mean that the cost of your long-term life insurance will stay that way. It can go up as you get older and your situation changes. 

Will You Need LTC? 

Many people question if they will need LTC or not. Our answer to this is it’s better to be safe than sorry. There’s no way of knowing if one day you’ll decline to the point where you need someone to help you eat. 

If you wait until you begin showing signs of cognitive issues, it may be too late to open a policy. That’s why it’s suggested that you start shopping around for companies while you’re still young. 

You may never need to use your LTC insurance. In fact, we hope that’s the case, but statics show that most people will have to cover a nursing home stay at some point in their lives. It’s not something you want to pay out of pocket for. 

Can You Self-Insure? 

Many people see the kind of quotes that insurance companies give them, and their eyes widen to the size of dinner saucers. It’s possible that you’ll pay a lot each month for coverage. 

When you hear the numbers, you may feel like it would be cheaper to self-insure. We’re here to say that’s a risky move. You could save hundreds of dollars each month and still only be able to cover two years of a nursing homestay. 

If you’re going to need assistance for a long period of time, you’ll be in trouble. It’s much safer to bite the bullet per se and go ahead and open a long-term care insurance policy. 

What About Family Members? 

Can’t you ask your family members to take care of you? They’ll help you perform all your daily tasks for free, right? That’s what they are there for. 

While it’s true that your loved ones, might be willing to help you, it’s not something you should count on. You’ve got to think about the strain that comes from helping someone take care of themselves. 

Buying long-term care insurance will take some of the burden off your family. You’ll at least be able to use your policy to handle respite care while the person looking after you takes a well-deserved break. 

Will You Even Qualify? 

You may be able to afford long-term coverage, but not qualify for it. If you have any long-term health conditions, you’ll be seen as riskier to cover, so you won’t be able to open a policy. 

Even something like a recent stroke will have an effect on your eligibility. Those who are over the age of 75 are more likely to get turned down as well. 

What’s the Best Age to Apply? 

Most LTC claims don’t come after a sudden hip replacement or heart attack. They come as one gradually gets older and begins to decline. This being said, there’s no sense in waiting until you get to that point to shop around for insurance. 

There is such a thing as purchasing too early, however. If you buy a policy when you’re in your late 40s and 50s, you will get a good discount on your premium, but you’ll be paying said premium for a long time. You don’t end up actually saving anything. 

Our advice is to buy your policy when you’re between the ages of 60-65. It’s a nice sweet spot between young and old. You’ll still get to take advantage of a lower premium, and you won’t have to pay on it for so long that your policy stops being worth it. 

The Rates Only Get Higher as You Get Older 

Another thing to think about is your rates only get higher as you get older. Let’s say that you do get proactive and buy your insurance when you’re 50. Your rate will go up by about 4% each time you reach a birthday. 

Those who buy their policy when they’re in their 60s will see an 8% increase every year. You can imagine how much your rate will be if you wait until you’re 80 to get insurance. 

You may not have to pay your premium for too long when you’re that old, but the savings will be offset by how expensive your rate is going to be as you age.  

How Do You Get LTC? 

So, after reading what we have to say are you thinking about getting a policy? There are a few ways that you can go about it. If you know what insurance company you want to get coverage with, you can buy your policy directly through them. 

If you have no idea where to begin with buying insurance, an agent can assist you. They’ll help you weigh the pros and cons of different policies and walk you through filling out the paperwork to apply. 

Websites such as https://wealthalliance.com/long-term-care-insurance/ can help you budget for your policy. When you go through a broker, you will have to answer a bunch of health-related questions, but people who go this route are more likely to get coverage. 

Your place of work might offer long-term care insurance as a benefit. If it does, you still want to shop around a little before you buy into it. You might be able to find a better rate with a different company. 

Prepare Yourself for the Future 

It’s never too early to start thinking about the future. There will come a time when it might be difficult for you to dress or even feed yourself. 

You shouldn’t wait until your health declines to that point to apply for long-term care insurance. The best age to start applying around is between 60-65. If you wait any longer than that, you might get overwhelmed by an expensive premium. 

To get more answers to all your insurance-related questions, feel free to explore the rest of our blog.