Millennials grew up with technology and were the creators of Google, Facebook, and Instagram. So what do these tech savvy consumers need to think about when it comes to Long Term Care Insurance? Millennials are a planning focused generation which makes them an excellent market for long term care. According to a recent study done by financial experts, 69 percent of millennials agreed that the burden of providing LTC for parents or grandparents will fall on them. This lead to 56 percent of millennials believing they personally will plan for LTC better than previous generations, mainly because they are more aware of the challenge.
While long term care insurance is more affordable at a younger age, only 0.8 percent of those under the age of 35 applied for long term care insurance in 2012. The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation at the Department of Health and Human Services reported that half of older people now in the U.S. will need a high level of care that will average $140,000 for only two years of care. The first course of action millennials can take is to sit down with our loved ones and discuss the importance and implications of planning for one’s long-term care needs. According to financial experts, here are a few helpful hints to talk to a millennial about long term care.
- Begin conversations by connecting to Millennials’ experience with parents and grandparents. Focus on both the financial and caregiver pressures LTC has put on their own families, or the families of close friends.
- Reinforce the rising cost of LTC. Today’s U.S. median annual costs are around $43,000 for an assisted living facility and around $91,000 for a private nursing home arrangement. These costs have been increasing, respectively, by 2.5 percent and 4.0 percent per year.
- Explain why it is never too soon for young adults to begin making LTC plans for themselves. 1) 70 percent of Americans who reach age 65 will need some long-term care, for an average period of three years: 2) costs are more affordable when coverage starts at younger ages; and: 3) poor health is less likely to be an LTC underwriting obstacle at younger ages. Websites such as ltctree.com can help direct any questions that might arise when talking about long term care.
- Focus on LTC as a planning concept, not a product. Millennials don’t like financial sales pressure. They prefer education and options, so let them know about different ways to cover LTC costs.
No LTC decisions must be made right away. However, millennials must feel that you are interested in a continuous, holistic planning process and are willing to provide the education and options to help them succeed. Planning for LTC hits an emotional nerve in many millennials and gives you the opportunity to discuss a variety of choices.