YOU ASK:

When should you start buying long term care insurance?

WE ANSWER:

First, you should make an evaluation of your assets. Long term care insurance is a good idea if you have substantial assets that you want to protect. In the event of a medical condition that will result in your needing long term care, your assets may have to be liquidated in order for you to afford the fees.

  • If your assets (plus savings) reach $2,000,000, you may have enough in order to afford long term care.
  • If your assets fall between around $200,000 to $2,000,000, then you may need long term care insurance in order to protect your assets.
  • If your assets fall below $200,000 and you have a hard time making things meet, it may make more sense for you to spend the supposed premiums on your daily needs. You will, of course, have to pay for long term care from your own pocket, until you are able to be eligible for Medicaid coverage.

Taking this in consideration, experts recommend that you start looking into buying this insurance when you reach your 50s. However, this is just an estimate and it will actually depend on your own situation.

Evaluate the following conditions:

  • Your Risk factors. Does your family (on both sides) have long life spans? Does your family have health conditions that may be passed on to you, such as heart disease? How is your lifestyle? Do you work in an environment that is stressful? Do you eat healthy? How often do you exercise?
  • Your support. Do you have family members (spouse, children and other relatives) who can take care of you or can support your stay in a long term care facility?
  • Your finances. How much are you earning now? How much will you be earning 10 to 20 years from now? How much retirement benefits do you stand to get? Will you be able to afford the premium payments (with its subsequent increases) even after you retire? How much savings do you have - how long will this last to pay for long term care as well as your daily household expenses?
  • The premiums vis-a-vis your age. How much will the increases in the premiums be if I postpone the purchase of the policy?
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