By Marcie Durian, Senior Resource Specialist, LivWell Seniors In partnership with Aleeza Singh, Senior Financial Advisor, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management
There are many factors to consider when planning for your retirement or taking on caregiving responsibilities for a loved one. Throughout 2020 LivWell Seniors will be featuring a “Pillars of Planning” series in Healthy Cells Magazine to help guide and direct families through their journey in discovering the best options for their unique situation.
The 4 Pillars discussed are: Financial, Legal, Legacy, and Living Solutions
CAREGIVING PILLAR 1 — FINANCIAL
Much has been written about the steadily increasing life expectancy of Americans over the past several decades. According to the United States Social Security Administration, on average, a woman turning 65 today can now expect to live to age 86.5, while a man turning 65 today can expect to live to age 84.
“It is important to understand that LIVING LONGER doesn’t necessarily mean LIVING BETTER. “
With advancing age, also comes an increased likelihood of a costly healthcare event-an event that could rapidly deplete a lifetime’s worth of savings without proper planning.
THE CASE FOR LONG-TERM CARE PLANNING
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services predicts that 70 percent of Americans who are currently age 65 or older will require some type of long-term care during their lifetime. Given this strong likelihood that you will need care, there are a number of important long-term care related questions that you should address and plan for:
- Who will be your primary caregiver?
- In what setting do you want to receive care?
- How will you pay for care?
- How will you care impact your family and finances?
Given the option, a majority of individuals would opt to receive care in their own home, rather than in a nursing home or community care facility.
WHAT EXACTLY IS LONG-TERM CARE?
Long-term care consists of those services needed to assist you with the activities of daily living, such as walking, getting out of a chair or bed, eating, toileting or bathing. It also includes care related to the supervision of individuals suffering from cognitive impairments such as Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia that render the individual unable to adequately care for themselves.
Long-term care insurance helps ensure that you’ll have access to high-quality care should you ever need it, without having to spend down your life’s savings in order to pay for it. There are a growing numbers of options of long-term care insurance available to fit your individual needs and preferences. It is important that you partner with a trusted financial advisor to guide you through the process of evaluating your future planning needs.
LivWell Seniors serves as a local agency providing community-based resources that are 100 percent free to seniors and their families. They are funded by the senior care providers that utilize their service and network of connections. For further information, contact us at 563-265-1577, or visit our website at www.livwellseniors.com.
“The gift of friendship… a willingness to listen, a pair of helping hands, a whisper from the heart. That someone cares and understands.”