Our Ask a Question mailbag often includes reader submissions wondering about whether long term care insurance makes financial sense.
As with all insurance policies, long term care coverage works out to be a great deal — if you actually use it. On the other hand, you could argue that you wasted money if you never have to claim your benefits.
Over the years I have had many Gloucester County clients who died without using their long term care insurance benefits. But there have also been clients who fell ill and, without strong policies in place, would have been forced to leave their homes. In those cases, the insurance paid for in-house care far beyond what their own investments would have provided. The group that seems to benefit the most from long term care insurance benefits are clients who develop Alzheimer’s. Their benefits have provided for placement in memory care facilities, far beyond the reach of most household savings.
I suggest that you consult with your financial advisor about the various policies available and your ability to self-insure should you fall ill. Assess how important it is to you to stay in your house should you ever become unable to easily walk or care for yourself. For some people, this is of paramount importance. Other people choose to plan ahead for a move to an assisted living facility.
Consult with your doctor about the chances of developing Alzheimer’s. There is a great amount of information available about the projected future costs of care. If you find that your own funds will not cover the costs, then long term health care insurance will be something you should seriously consider.
In the end, paying for any type of insurance is about letting you sleep better at night, knowing that you are covered if the unexpected happens. If long term health care insurance is in your budget and it allows you to sleep better, then it is a good deal.
If you have questions about estate planning in Gloucester County, New Jersey, feel free to contact our office for a free consultation.