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Published: Jun 27th, 2015

Nursing Homes May Bankrupt You Unless You Plan

Nursing Homes May Bankrupt You Unless You Plan
Article Updated:September 14th, 2019

UPDATED September 14, 2019

Longevity has become a big concern for retirement planning. The costs of long-term care services and supports will often drain savings and have a negative impact on income. For couples, this will have a dramatic impact on a couple's lifestyle even if they have substantial savings. 

The cost of this care does vary depending on where you live. According to the LTC NEWS Cost of Care calculator the nation average of skilled care in a nursing home is around $103,000 a year. However, most long-term care is delivered either in your own home or other facilities  like adult day care centers, assisted living facilities, memory care centers, as well as traditional nursing homes. Since the chance of needing some type of care service in your lifetime is so high, addressing the financial costs and burdens of aging is essential.

Health insurance, including once your are age 65 and over Medicare(including supplements) will only pay a small portion of skilled services. Most long-term care is custodial in nature and not covered at all by any insurance other than Long-Term Care Insurance. This is why so many experts suggest having a plan in place prior to your retirement.

The question remains, are your prepared for the high costs of long-term care and the impact it will have on those you love? Yes, paid care is expensive. If you think your children or your spouse will become caregivers think again. Caregiving is hard and your children will have their own careers, families, and responsibilities. Plus, you are not the only one getting older! Yes, you and your spouse are aging and your future older spouse will not be able to handle being a caregiver. However, by the time you need care your children will also be older. This is another reason to think about planning ahead.

A recent article in Motley Fool suggests the cost of extended Long Term Health Care can have a significant impact on your future retirement, perhaps even to the point where you may end up spending down assets and having to use the Medicaid program.

 “There are many things to look forward to in the future, but there are plenty of things we worry about, too. Many people worry about their health and dread certain potential outcomes, such as becoming unable to care for themselves and perhaps ending up in a nursing home. That alone is an unpleasant thought, and nursing home costs can be another.”

  Article written by Selena Maranjian, 

She mentions that nursing homes stays are less today than in the past. This is not, however, due to fewer people needing extend care. There are just more options than ever before on how to receive that care. More home care options are available in addition to adult daycare and assisted living.

The article suggests that the costs for Long-Term Care Insurance has been going up in recent years. However, premiums are affordable at the ages most people start looking into planning. For people in their mid-40’s to age 65, you will find premiums very affordable especially if you are married and in good health.

“Finally, remember that, when you start having trouble caring for yourself, there might be less expensive options than a nursing home, at least for a while. An assisted-living facility might do (Genworth cited a national median annual cost of $43,200 for that), while home health aides cost a national median of about $20 per hour. Twenty hours per week of that would approach $21,000.

It's worth spending some time now thinking about how you would pay for nursing home costs -- or other long-term care costs, for that matter. A little planning now might prevent panic or desperation later.”

Selena Maranjian 

"When it comes to Long-Term Care, the vast majority of care is provided in the home."

Jesse Slome, director of the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance (AALTCI), which is a leading consumer advocacy group

The rate for a home health aide averages $21 an hour according to the latest report published by the AALTCI.

"Just over half of all Long-Term Care insurance claims start with the policyholder receiving care at home."

"First, that's where most of us would prefer to be as opposed to a nursing home setting and the insurance policy benefits make it possible for people to get that needed care at home."

"People buying Long-Term Care insurance today need to understand that having insurance that pays some but not all of the cost is a prudent way to plan."

"It's also a way to make this protection very affordable, with a 55-year old paying around $100-to-$130 a month for protection."

Jesse Slome

Slome advocates the 'Good - Better - Best approach to Long-Term Care insurance planning.

The Association offers free access to a video explaining how to reduce the cost. The videos can be found at

Affordable Long-Term Care Insurance gives you access to your choice of quality care in the setting you desire without placing a burden and stress on your loved ones. Plus, they protect your income and savings. There is no need for your family to go into crisis management when you take the initiative to safeguard assets and ease family stress with an affordable Long-Term Care Insurance policy.


The key is to plan before you retire when premiums are very affordable. Start your research by finding the current cost of care in your state by using the LTC News Map by clicking here.


Always use an experienced Long-Term Care Insurance specialist. Find one by clicking here.