The Secret to Saving Money on Long Term Care Insurance
Shopping for long term care insurance can be difficult, and confusing. Between policy options, coverage estimates, inflation riders, spousal options, and other additional riders that are available, it can make your head spin. It can be easy to throw up your hands and say you'll deal with it later. But this would be a costly mistake, especially if you've reached your 50's.
Many people have heard how expensive long term care insurance is, so they just write it off and assume they can't afford it. While it can be very expensive, you might just be pleasantly surprised how affordable it can be. So what's the secret to saving money on long term care insurance? Read on to find out . . .
Secret #1 - The younger you are, the cheaper it is
The number one way to save big on your premiums for long term care is to get something in place NOW! One of the biggest factors that determine how much you pay is your age at the time you get your policy. The younger you are, the cheaper it is, and the savings can be significant. Not only do your premium rates go up as you age, (because of the likelihood of you using the policy increases), but your coverage options dwindle.
Another reason not to wait is that as we age, the likelihood of us developing a health issue increases. Depending on the issue, this can either drive up the amount that you pay for coverage, or it can eliminate the option of getting coverage for you altogether.
25% of applicants in their 60's are declined by insurance companies, and 44% of those in their 70's can't get coverage at all. Some insurers won't even consider someone over the age of 75, but trust me, even if you were able to get it, the premiums would be insane!
Bottom line: You will never be younger or healthier than you are today. So take advantage of it, your wallet will thank you.
Secret #2 - Options = Power
When it comes to long term care insurance, there can be HUGE differences from policy to policy. From how the benefits are paid out, to coverage limits, the length of the waiting period before coverage kicks in, to the premiums you pay. Because of this, I can't stress enough how important it is that you are working with an agent who has the ability to "shop" the market for a policy for you.
There can be huge differences from how one policy works from another, and there can also be huge differences in premiums for comparable policies. So what Company A will charge you could be significantly higher than what Company B will charge you for the same type of coverage. Why is this? Every company is different from the products they offer, to the discounts that are available, to what health conditions they are and aren't flexible with (which will make a difference in what you pay, and also whether you can even get the coverage at all.) Each company has their own "sweet spot", which means that they have their own "ideal" time or age bracket that offers the best premiums for their coverage.
If you are working with an agent who is a "captive" agent, this means that they work FOR the insurance company. If you go to them to look into coverage they can only show you the products that their company offers. If it doesn't meet your needs, or you aren't approved for coverage, you're dead in the water.
If you work with an agent who is a "broker", this means that they do not work for an insurance company, but instead they work for their clients, and therefor they have access to multiple companies and all of their products. This gives them the ability to shop the market to find the policy with the best coverage, for the best price to meet your needs. This does not mean that the policy that a captive agent can offer you is not an excellent option. It very well might be, but you'll have no idea whether or not it is the best option for you unless you've compared. You also might find out that if you had taken the time to compare, that you could have gone with another company and received comparable coverage and been able to save a chunk of money every month.
Bottom line: Options = Power. Be sure to work with an agent who can be objective for you and shop the market to get the best solution in place for YOU.
The right policy and the right plan is all about you: your priorities, your health, your budget, and your options. It is important to work with an agent who can simplify the process for you, and take the time to get to know your situation and needs so that you can get the best solution in place for you. There is no better time than NOW to start.
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