When Should I Purchase Long-Term Care Insurance?
You should purchase long-term care insurance sooner rather than later, and for good reason!
For many individuals, they start thinking about long-term care insurance when they’re nearing Medicare-age (65 or so). But this is already too late, because there is a 68% that a senior over the age of 65 will need some kind of long-term care (AARP: A Report to the Nation on Independent Living and Disability).
The insurance companies aren’t very excited about selling insurance to someone who is likely to cash in on it so soon.
This means that most companies won’t even accept your application if you’re in your 60s. Ideally, you’d be looking to apply for long-term care insurance in your 40s or 50s.
If you start looking in your 40s and 50s, you’ll experience a few benefits:
- The premiums will be more affordable (though you should expect rate increases over time)
- There’s a better chance you’ll be approved (only about 50% of applications are approved)
- You’ll have peace of mind knowing that it’s not too late
For many individuals in their 60s, they really want long-term care insurance, but it’s just too late.
If that might be you, there are some alternatives to long-term care insurance that you could still be approved for.
Short-term care insurance is an insurance policy that pays for up to 1 year of care that you might need in a nursing home, assisted living facility, or other skilled care facility.
Short-term recovery care is very similar to long-term care in that it’s used to protect your assets from being depleted by expensive care. While the benefits are largely the same, there are differences between short-term care and long-term care.
You can read more about how short-term care and long-term care compare here.
Another option is life insurance with long-term care. This is a two-in-one product that gives you the benefits of a permanent life insurance policy while offering to cover long-term care costs should you need it.
This is a great option for people who want to ensure their policy pays someone at some point. With regular long-term care insurance, you pay into a policy not knowing if you’re ever actually going to go on claim. If you don’t end up in a long-term care facility, you paid all of that money for nothing.
The great thing about a life insurance policy with a long-term care rider is if you end up in a nursing home, you can borrow money from the policy to pay for it. If you don’t, your policy will pay your beneficiary the full amount when you pass.
You can read more about how life insurance with a long-term care rider works here.
With all of these options, it’s worthwhile to at least attempt to pass medical underwriting. Once you hear back, you’ll know if this policy is even an option for you. From there, you can choose whether to continue or to not.
To sum it up, you should really look at long-term care insurance by your 50s (at the latest). But if you did miss this window, short-term care and life insurance with a long-term care rider are still potential options.
If you’d like our team to help you compare benefits and pricing for these plans, simply click the link below. Our services are free to you, and you’re never obligated to buy anything.
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