Leaving it to your kids or anyone else to take care of you every day when you get older may not be the best way to go. That’s a huge responsibility that requires a lot of sacrifices, and you would not want your loved ones to spend their lives that way.
Individual long-term care insurance coverage is probably the best way to prepare yourself for your golden years, and offset some of the medical costs and other costs that may come with them. Let’s get one thing straight: there’s a high chance you’ll need some type of care when you get older. And the costs of care are high, and continue to rise.
The annual cost of nursing home care can be more than \$100,000. So, if you want to avoid getting in a stressful situation in your senior age, and want to protect your retirement savings, then you probably need to think about paying for long-term care insurance while you’re still living your best life and have a good income coming in.
That’s why we’ve decided to list some of the best long-term care insurance options in 2022, and help you choose the right one for your needs. Before we get into what long-term care insurance is the best, let’s introduce you to what long-term care insurance is and what it covers.
A Brief Introduction To Long-term Care Insurance
As we already mentioned, one way to prepare yourself for the care you’ll need when you grow older, is to buy long-term care coverage. This insurance covers essential requirements people need when they get older and are unable to perform certain operations of daily living (ADL), like eating, bathing, toileting, and other everyday activities we take for granted that we can do on our own when we’re younger.
Long-term care insurance covers daily living type services that regular health insurance doesn’t. Included are adult day care services and assistance with daily activities like dressing, eating, bathing, and getting out of bed.
This insurance is not just for the elderly. Even younger people can and should consider getting this insurance for an instance where they cannot take care of themselves—if they experience an accident or develop a serious illness, for example, and can’t perform ADLs for a period of time. Anyone who needs constant supervision is a candidate for long-term care insurance, but, like most insurances, you can’t get long-term care insurance once you have an ADL issue. You need to get it before you actually need it.
It’s good to think about getting long-term care insurance for young adults.
What Does Long-term Care Insurance Cover?
Most of the available long-term insurance policies are comprehensive. That means you can typically use your daily services in different settings. So, here is where you can use your long-term care insurance with covered care and medical expenses:
- LTC covers nursing homes
- Adult day care service facilities
- Special care living facilities for people with Alzheimer’s disorder
- Hospice services and care
- Alternate or residential assisted living facilities
- Your home
If you use the LTC in the home setting, your comprehensive long-term care insurance will cover the following services:
- If you can’t move, get out of bed, or need help dressing and bathing, your LTC insurance will cover assistance with these for you.
- You can get skilled private nursing care in your home.
- You can get physical, occupational, and rehabilitation therapy.
If you need Personal Care and Homemaker Services, you can get an LTC policy that covers housekeeping and meal preparation assistance.
Why Should You Consider Long-term Care Insurance?
There are many reasons why you should buy long-term care insurance. The most important one is that regular health insurance doesn’t cover the services of long-term care.
According to long-term care insurance statistics, nearly 60% of seniors need constant care at some point. While regular health care coverage only covers limited and short stays, when you need rehab and skilled nursing, long-term care insurance covers day-to-day services and support.
If you don’t have long-term care insurance, you need to pay for all the services you get. That can exhaust your savings, and you may not have enough money to cover all the services and care you need.
If you’re wondering why so many people invest money in long-term care insurance, here are the two main reasons:
1. Reducing potential long-term care costs
Long-term care expenses are pretty high. The average price for annual services in a nursing home facility is approximately \$100,000. If you only want a home health aide, you need to pay $55,000. If you need homemaker services, you’ll need to pay $54,000 a year. Genworth has a great Cost of Care survey they put out with CareScout, so check it out for even more details for costs by region.
2. Getting the most out of the care services
The sooner you decide to buy LTC insurance, the cheaper your monthly premium payments will be for the long-term care services you want covered.
How Can You Buy and When Can You Benefit From Long-term Care Insurance?
If you want to know what long-term care insurance is the best and how you can buy one, we’re here to help. To buy LTC insurance, you need to choose an insurer, fill out the application, and answer some basic questions about your overall health.
The insurance company may ask about any existing medical conditions, check your health history via your medical records, and possibly ask you to take a medical exam. They’ll probably set up a short face-to-face or phone interview. Some are starting to contact clients through a Zoom or video call. After you complete the application, you can choose the coverage amount.
Once the insurance company approves the coverage amount, you can start paying the policy premiums. The time when you can start using the long-term care policy usually depends on the insurance company’s assessment when you file a claim.
You become eligible to use the long-term care services when you’re not able to perform two or more activities of daily living activities anymore.
They may include the following:
- Inability to control defecation and urination functions
- Inability to go to the bathroom alone
- Inability to take a shower
- Inability to feed yourself
- Inability to dress up
- Inability or limited ability to move and transfer.
What Affects the Cost of Long-term Care Insurance?
According to the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance price index, the average cost of the annual premium of long-term care insurance for a healthy, single 55-year-old woman is around $1,500. However, the price index depends on many things.
Here are the factors that influence the rates for long-term care insurance:
1. Health condition and age
The reason why many people think about buying long-term care insurance when they are younger and healthier is the price. When you’re older it’s more likely your health status is affected in some way and you could be dealing with severe poor health problems, in which case you’ll pay the higher price for long-term insurance, so inform yourself on aging and long-term care. And again, if you already have an issue with an ADL, you won’t be able to get the insurance.
2. Partnership status
Single people need to pay more for fully-covered long-term care insurance services. An insurance premium is significantly lower for married couples.
3. Insurance companies’ pricing
Prices vary from company to company. So, before you decide what long-term care insurance is the best for your needs, make sure you research all the options and compare the prices. A Policy Solver agent can help you with this if you’d like.
Long-term care insurance is significantly lower for men because women typically account for more than two-thirds of long-term insurance claims, as they usually live longer.
5. Level of coverage (Policy cost)
The more coverage you have in your policy, the higher the cost of premiums will be. You may be offered additional riders (add-ons) to your policy, which will also usually incur an extra cost.
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Best Long-term Care Insurance Companies in 2022
We have finally reached the part that probably interests you the most. We’ve done all the legwork to help you make an informed decision. Here are some of the top insurance companies that can provide you with the services you may need.
Nationwide is a well-known insurance company founded in 1926. Since then, they have been known for excellent car insurance policies. In recent years, the company has grown and become one of the best insurance service providers.
Apart from car insurance coverage, Nationwide offers bundle insurance packages. Most importantly, they offer long-term care insurance policies. All of their long-term care insurance policies come with flexible riders.
One plan works by giving people reimbursement each month for all the care services that are covered. The other plan offers cash indemnity or monthly benefit payments.
Pros of buying Nationwide LTC insurance:
- You can buy either universal or universal variable LTC insurance with an included LTC rider.
- You can track insurance quotes online.
- Their LTC insurances come in two different plans.
Cons of using Nationwide LTC insurance:
- Their long-term insurance rider is only available in certain states.
- The insurance coverage varies by location.
2. New York Life
New York Life is an insurance company founded in 1845, and probably the largest life insurance company in the United States. New York Life currently offers two types of LTC insurance, combined LTC insurance, and traditional, standalone long-term care insurance.
Their traditional long-term care insurance is an excellent option for people who have already bought their life insurance policy. They allow their users to combine long-term care with life insurance by using their Asset Flex product.
The insurance premium at New York Life starts at $10,000. You can either pay it in full or choose to provide the premiums in multiple installments. All in all, this combined plan allows you to refund your money if you don’t use long-term care services.
Pros of buying LTC insurance at New York Life:
- You have the ability to combine their life insurance with long-term care insurance.
- According to A.M Best rating, New York Life is considered A++ (Superior).
- They have an easy-to-navigate website with features like a product comparison tool.
- If you don’t use the benefits, you can get the money back.
- You can’t track quotes online.
- You can only find out the insurance quotes if you contact a company or their agents.
3. Mutual of Omaha
Mutual of Omaha is not only an insurance company. They are also known as one of the largest financial service firms in the United States. But, we’re going to focus on their insurance offering. They offer only standalone long-term care insurance with various features and great flexibility.
Their LTC insurance policyholders can demand to take the cash benefit without waiting until the end of the elimination period, or get reimbursement after the insurance policy elimination period. The company even offers a 15% discount for married couples and people in good health.
You can reduce the price of LTC insurance by 5% even if your partner doesn’t want to buy a combined policy. Additionally, you can pay extra for special services like security benefits and inflation protection.
Pros of buying Mutual of Omaha LTC insurance:
- The company is rated A+.
- It has positive reviews on ConsumerAffairs.
- It offers discounts for healthy and married people.
- It has an easy-to-navigate website.
- You can estimate your costs by using their online tool.
You can only check policy details and track insurance quotes by contacting a company’s agent.
4. Brighthouse Financial
Brighthouse Financial offers a combination of an indexed universal life and long-term care policy. It is offered as an extended benefit to their life insurance plans. With this policy, you can grow your LTC returns in several ways.
This company stands out by the number of options they provide for determining benefits. It has a long history since the original company was founded in 1863. It is currently one of the biggest life insurance companies in the United States as it has assets worth over $220 billion and more than 2.6 annuity contracts and insurance policies.
- The elimination period is short.
- Death benefits and long-term care insurance are tax-free.
- You can get a total of 50% of the death benefits in case you find out you have a terminal illness .
- The premium will not increase over time.
- You can combine IUL and LTC insurance.
- You can’t get insurance quotes online.
- The payment options are limited.
- Insurance rider options are limited.
This is our list of top LTC insurance providers in 2022. We hope this article has helped you determine what long-term care insurance is the best and narrow down your list. Take the time to consider these options and see which one is perfect for your needs. It’s a good idea to visit their official websites or contact their companies to see if some of their conditions have changed. Or just reach out to us, as we are constantly evaluating other carriers and forming relationships with the one’s we think can offer our customers the best plans at the best rates. So, we’ll review this article and update when we can as we continue our work to help customers find the best carriers for their needs.
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