Why should a person buy LTC insurance at age 50, when they may not need care (typically) until age 80? Why pay premiums all those years? Who wants to spend money for 30 years of premiums.
Seems like a logical viewpoint, why start paying premiums now when it could be 30 years before you might need care. As long as you stay healthy it’s a valid viewpoint. If only you could guarantee that!
If you were 24 years old, with a Camaro or other expensive to insure car, and knew that the car insurance would be much less after your 25th birthday, would you wait? It will only be a few months……..
HEALTH CAN CHANGE
Did you know that 40% of the people receiving LTC services in this country are between 18 and 64? Many people go to the doctor every year for a check up and stay in good health, until the checkup where the doctor tells you the results of a test and prescribes metformin, or fosomax, or warfarin, or prednisone, any of which might be prescribed for someone who appears healthy, able to do all their normal activities, but can no longer purchase LTC insurance.
Did you save up to pay cash for your first house? The house went up in price faster than you could save. Good LTC insurance has a built in 5% automatic annual increase in the benefits it will pay when care is needed. Every year you put off purchasing LTC insurance means a larger benefit will be needed, and you are another year older. Once you have a policy, every year your benefits increase to keep up with the increases in the cost of care. Owning a policy puts inflation on your side.
LTC INSURANCE BECOMING HARDER TO GET
Years ago most people chose lifetime benefits. Such policies were relatively inexpensive and would cover however long you needed care. Now some policies will let you purchase 10 years of care, but most limit you to just five years of care maximum. Things that used to kill us, now “wing” us necessitating much longer periods of care, its very expensive, and the insurance companies are afraid to cover us for life anymore.
Medical conditions that were acceptable to LTC insurance companies a few years ago will now cause you to be turned down. Medical research has documented the link between diabetes and dementia, causing declines for diabetes now that would have been acceptable several years ago. This is happening with many different health conditions.
So when should you investigate LTC insurance? While you are still healthy enough to get it, and it is affordable. Most people are surprised to learn that they need less of it than they initially expected – once appropriate advice is considered. Thus it is important to investigate with a specialist, rather than someone who can find a single company and give you a price.
If you purchase coverage at age 50, and paid for 40 years, you would pay less in total than if you waited until age 60 and only paid for 30 years. By 60, a fourth of us can no longer qualify to buy LTC insurance. Get it while the getting is good. For more information, go to www.TheLongTermCareGuy.com