Being prepared for medical care costs in retirement will help ensure your golden years are financially stress-free. But that preparation takes time and careful planning as well as good insight from financial professionals into what those costs might actually be for you.
Life expectancy has tripled over the years, meaning that people are living longer than ever before. Unfortunately, the increase in life expectancy comes with an increase in retirement health care costs. So, while retirees want to enjoy their time by doing what they like, being active and traveling the world, health concerns can get in the way.
Approximately 85% of the elderly population has at least one health condition, while 60% have more than two. This makes retirement health care costs a massive consideration when planning for the future during your younger years.
Now is the time to get reliable suggestions and support to help you plan, and to start implementing that expert advice.
As inflation continues to rise, it impacts the cost of goods and services across all industries. The Consumer Price Index, which is at 5% to 5.5%, has been frequently used for estimating retirement costs, including health care costs, in financial planning. However it is no longer a reliable reference for medical costs, which have almost doubled by comparison to the other items in the index. To make matters worse, the Medicare Trust Fund, which pays for hospitals, nursing facilities, home health, and hospice services under traditional Medicare and Medicare Advantage plans, is projected to become insolvent by 2026.
Without reliable Medicare coverage or a plan that properly accounts for inflation, you'll have to dig deeper into your pockets to take care of medical costs in retirement. And with a subject as complex as health care, it’s easy to overlook important features of your plan. For example, there are services that private insurance and Medicare don't cover, forcing you to pay for the bills yourself. It can be expensive and frustrating.
The sooner you start understanding retirement medical expenses, the sooner you'll start making the right plans. Meet with an expert to discuss your unique circumstances and to learn more about medical coverage options based on your retirement goals. For example, what states have the best healthcare for retirees in case relocating may be a good fit for you. And what more you can be doing now to take care of future expenses.
It’s important to know how you’ll pay for your medical expenses before your Medicare benefits start. It's also necessary to have your other options ready to fill the gaps not covered by Medicare.
People are living longer. While this will likely mean more doctor visits and prescriptions as we age, for many this also means a longer stay in a long-term care community. It’s a big expense year after year. How do you prepare for this? If you have to permanently live in a care facility, how will you cover the costs of your living arrangements in addition to your medical care? Is there assistance for this cost or will it all come from your retirement income and savings?
Another consideration is whether your income level in retirement will enable you to receive the subsidies offered in the healthcare marketplace.
The last thing you want to do is come up short in covering your retirement health care costs. Now is the time to start calculating and planning for these expenses so you’ll be ready.
Medicaid, the nation’s health assistance program, provides free and low premium coverage depending on your income level and assets. It doesn't cover everything or everyone, so take the time to find out what options you’re eligible for and how to pair government and private services to make the most of your health care coverage.
It's essential to prepare in advance by finding an expert financial team capable of providing you with the resources and services required in retirement. Ask questions specific to your circumstances and see if your experts can help you make financial adjustments to cushion your retirement medical expenses.
Don’t wait until you’re retired, start preparing now so you’ll be able to pay for the best health care available in your retirement years.