Long term care insurance helps pay for a number of different services like care received in a nursing home, assisted living facility, or even at home. The government estimates that 1 in 2 Americans will need long term care at some point, so planning early can help save you money in the future. If you think that long term care insurance isn’t right for you, you may want to think again.

Unless you have a hefty amount of assets and can afford to self-insure or, on the flip side, know that you will qualify for Medicaid, long term care insurance is likely a smart tool to include in your retirement planning. If you still aren’t sure, here are some of the top reasons to buy long term care insurance.

1) Waiting until you need care will cost you.

The risk of needing long term care is about 50% for Americans, but once you reach age 65, it jumps to 70%. If you, like many people, need long term care for any reason, you will need to find a way to pay regardless of if you have long term care insurance or not. Facility care costs are on the rise and a private room in a nursing home now runs more than $94,000 yearly, according to a study released by John Hancock this year. Medicare doesn’t help pay for those costs, either. If you wait to buy, but then decide you want an insurance policy after you have fallen ill or become injured, it will likely be too late. The key to buying a policy is getting it BEFORE you need coverage, as the chances that you will qualify after are slim to none.

2) You will have more options and better control over your care. reasons to buy long term care insurance

Many people forgo planning for long term care because they assume Medicaid will pay for their care, which it might, but only if you meet the requirements. In order to enroll in Medicaid, the government run welfare program, you must have essentially zero assets to your name. Once you reach that point, your care will be covered, but it will be monitored and run by the federal program, and you may not have much say in the matter. Long term care insurance provides you with personal choice over what type of care you receive, where you receive it, and who provides that care.

3) You won’t burden your children or other loved ones. 

If you are within a financial threshold that will not allow you to qualify for Medicaid, but you can’t afford to pay for care out of pocket, family caregivers often step in and take over. Considering only 10% of American seniors have long term care insurance, but many are too wealthy to qualify for Medicaid, family caregivers are extremely common in our nation. So common, in fact, that the AARP estimates that the unpaid care provided by family caregivers in the US totals $450 billion every year. Family caregivers, typically children of an aging parent, often experience significant emotional distress. Parents, too, can feel immense amounts of guilt for burdening their children and disrupting their lives. This situation is one that no one ever wants to be in, and long term care insurance helps give you peace of mind that you won’t have to burden any loved ones with your care.

Long term care insurance policies can be affordable, but the key is to shop around and compare multiple companies. Buying from an independent agent who only works with top-rated companies will help you get a good policy at a reasonable rate. We provide our clients with a side-by-side comparison of the top companies, sent straight to them in the mail, to look over and review at their own pace. We believe in a no-pressure process of buying insurance and educating the consumer about all their options.

If you are interested in learning more about long term care insurance, read more about how to fund a policy or request a quote today and we will be happy to provide you with an objective comparison of the leading providers.