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Many of us remain optimistic that we will stay young forever. We expect to maintain vibrant heath and an active lifestyle, but the reality is that life often has other plans, and aging is an inevitable fact of life. The inconvenient truth is that up to 70 percent of adults will experience extended care in their lifetime, and 90 percent of those who wait too long to apply for Long-Term Care insurance will be denied. A majority of adults also feel that being a burden to their families is their greatest concern. Faced with these realities, there is no time like the present to plan for your future.

“I tell people that hope is not a plan,” says Teresa Risner, president of LTC Advisors at One Senior Place Greater Orlando. “They can’t simply assume they will never require long-term care. It’s always best to think ahead and ask yourself what kinds of things can negatively impact your life and/or your nest egg.”

LTC Advisors is dedicated to preparing people for a time when they will need extended care to stay independent. Every member of the LTC team understands the true impact of long-term care, as each of them has cared for a loved one and knows how challenging and expensive long-term care can be. “The process starts with talking to people about their future concerns, which is never an easy conversation to have,” says Risner. “Nevertheless, having a discussion about their current health, long-term financial outlook, retirement goals and needs/wants is an effective way to get them to apply a big-picture view of what retirement actually looks like for them.”

Risner stresses that there are all kinds of ways to prepare for your future, but that every person is different and requires a tailored solution. When applicable, LTC Advisors works with a client’s financial planner and/or trusted advisor to explore options and come up with customized recommendations that help each client plan accordingly. The company takes a holistic approach to finding the right solution for each individual, which may include considering one or more of the following: long-term care insurance, life insurance, annuities, financial planning, life settlement, Medicare/Medicaid, claims counseling and insurance analysis.

“The money to pay for long-term care has to come from somewhere, and most often it’s savings and retirement contributions that get hit the hardest, which in turn threatens a family’s ability to live comfortably,” says Risner. “It’s hard when you see people who are desperate and don’t have enough money to get the proper care they need. I tell my clients to get ready because your future is coming whether you want it to or not.”

Risner believes the challenge is to get others to see things objectively and from a present-day perspective. For example, long-term care insurance rates on older policies have gone up drastically in recent years because of assumptions insurers made decades ago. In the early days of long-term care insurance (1970s), insurers based rates on the older life insurance model, which they eventually learned wasn’t a viable comparison. “Long-term care insurance has much lower lapse rates because people who buy this coverage generally hang onto it – and claim. Coupled with the fact that we are living longer and the cost of healthcare has gone up drastically, we are seeing insurance companies raising their rates to make their pricing models more stable,” she explains. “People may need to be prepared for rate increases and other possible changes in the healthcare landscape.” But policies issued today in most states are governed by new regulations issued by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners and adapted by most states. These regulations mandate that policies are priced fairly and accurately based on everything that’s been learned.

Modern medicine is keeping people alive longer. Today, if you have clogged arteries, doctors can most likely fix you. In many cases, cancer is no longer an automatic death sentence. Blood pressure and cholesterol medications are keeping people alive and have helped raise overall life expectancy rates. As a society, we are also eating healthier and exercising more.

“What killed our grandparents may not kill us, and this is important to understand because many individuals believe they’re simply going to go quickly, be it from a heart attack or stroke,” says Risner. “This simply isn’t true anymore. People are living longer, but as a result they will more likely need some form of long-term care as they continue to age, and they need to be financially prepared for that.”

To find out more about LTC Advisors at One Senior Place Greater Orlando and how their certified professionals can help you plan for your future, contact Teresa Risner, LTCP, CLTC, at 407-949-6722.

 

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One Senior Place is a comprehensive, one-stop resource office with access to information, advice, and services for seniors. Not only are a variety of businesses available in one location, but we also offer educational seminars on a regular basis, and our Senior Resource Library is available to help you find what you are looking for. Call 407-949-6733 for more information or for a complimentary consultation with a One Senior Place Aging Services Expert.