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Here are a couple interesting statistics for you:

 – There are approximately 35 million people in the United States age 65 or older, accounting for about 13 percent of the total population. In 1900, the number of older Americans was about 3.1 million.

 – With the aging of baby boomers, born between 1946 and 1964, America’s older population will double by 2030, reaching some 70 million.

Well that’s good news isn’t it?  To me It’s great news!!  After all, as I get older the ages I’ve always viewed as “old” don’t seem so old any longer.  But the fact that more Americans are living to an average age of 79  brings with it some new issues; and, one of the biggest issues is, “how can one afford it?”  Longer life spans generally result in a longer period of time after one’s working days; a time when our health isn’t generally as good as it used to be.  The natural

result is that many of our older population rely on nursing homes, assisted living communities, home care, or elder day care, and these expenses are not cheap.  Investment News published a snapshot of the average cost of these forms of long term care in their publication in December of last year (Investment News, December 17-21, 2012).  This reports showed the average rate of a semiprivate nursing home room in America to have reached $222 PER DAY.  If you want your mother to have a private room it will cost you $248 per day, or about $91,000 annually.  Assisted living accommodations :  $43,000 annually.  So you are planning on dropping your father off at an elder care center for the day?  Be prepared to pay an average hourly rate of $70. My point?  Long term care is escalating at a time where most of our salaries are not.  But what about Medicare?  Won’t that cover it?  Actually most of these services are not covered by our Medicare insurance.  The sad reality is that many of our senior citizens are receiving little, or no, long term care at all; or, at least what they are receiving is not adequate.  The truth is many just can’t afford it, nor can their younger families.  And if you have any family history of Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, or strokes these costs can begin early and last for several years.

What’s the answer?  I’m afraid that as of now there really isn’t one.  The numbers I quoted will in all likelihood increase this year (and each subsequent year) and no relief seems to be looming from our friends in Washington.  The only thing we can really do to protect ourselves as we age is to plan early and take action now that will protect us later.  Long term care insurance is a great option!  By taking action while you can still afford it you can keep from financially stressing your family (or yourself), and at the same time make sure you have appropriate funds to pay for your long term care needs.

if you would like to look at your long term care insurance options give Integrity Financial Solutions at call at 678-373-9285 or drop us an email at john@integrityfinancialonline.com right away.  We would love to partner with you in planning for your future.  Our consultations are always free.

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