One of the most common questions people ask about senior care is, “How am I going to be able to afford this?” Indiana ranks sixth in senior living affordability, according to a study by Caring.com, with an average monthly cost of $4,283 a month for assisted living. But other senior living solutions can be more expensive, including memory care for people with dementia, and nursing home care for people who require hands-on assistance.
Even those who have planned for their retirement may be intimidated by the idea of paying thousands of dollars monthly for senior living. Yet many seniors are no longer physically or emotionally safe in their current living situation. A senior community or facility can help fill the gaps with regular meals, medicine reminders and a calendar full of activities for people who aren’t ready to stop living.
This brings us back to the cost. If home is no longer a safe or compassionate place for you or your senior loved one, it’s time to talk about other options. Fortunately, the compassionate staff at Senior Living Advisor have walked this road with many clients. We take the time to get to know you, so that we can suggest senior living solutions that meet your budget and your needs. You may think senior living is unaffordable, but read on for suggestions on how you can pay for the care you or a loved one need in the Golden Years.
Leveraging your investments
Many seniors want to leave a financial legacy to their children and grandchildren. However, this nest egg that you’ve nurtured and safeguarded belongs to you. Don’t be afraid to spend it on quality care for your senior years. Do you own your home? Selling your home can help pay for a new home in a senior community. Remember, many senior community fees include expenses like utilities, internet access, meals and trash collection, eliminating the monthly bills you are used to paying.
Life insurance policies are another overlooked asset for seniors who need help paying for care. Some life insurance policies offer an opportunity to sell back the benefits for 50-75% of its face value. Reach out to your provider to find out more.
Some veterans are eligible for subsidized long-term care services. Care settings include nursing homes, assisted living facilities or at-home care. You can read more about qualifications here.
Long-term care insurance
Long-term care insurance policies cover certain types of elder care, including assisted living. However, these policies require advanced planning, as many insurance companies deny coverage to people with pre-existing conditions like Alzheimer’s disease or stroke. Long-term care insurance may also cover care at home.
Medicaid and Medicare
Many people assume Medicare will pay for assisted living or nursing home care. Medicare does cover some nursing home stays if they are related to an illness or injury requiring skilled nursing during the recovery time. However, Medicare does not typically pay for assisted living or long-term care in a nursing home.
On the other hand, Medicaid may pay for assisted living or nursing home care after a senior has exhausted his or her financial resources. It is important to note that the Medicaid voucher program has a lookback period of three to five years, depending on the state. During this lookback period, seniors cannot gift large amounts of money or real estate to friends or family members. If you gave your car to your granddaughter a year before you apply for a Medicaid voucher, you may be temporarily denied coverage due to the lookback period. Remember, too, that not every facility accepts Medicaid payments. If you think you may need to eventually rely on Medicaid, Senior Living Advisor staff can help you find communities with a Medicaid option.
Tax credit communities
Certain senior communities receive tax credits in return for providing affordable housing options for seniors. While people might cringe at the subsidized housing stereotype, Senior Living Advisor staff members can direct you to communities that offer the standard of care you are seeking.
Talking to an expert
Senior Living Advisor Founder Lona Newton realizes that the senior living scenario can be daunting. That’s why she and her staff are ready to sit down with you to hear your story and help you find a solution that works. Senior Living Advisor also maintains a list of resources, including elder care attorneys, financial advisors and veterans benefits consultants to ensure you’re protecting your assets while you pay for the best available living solutions.
Are you ready to talk about paying for senior living? Reach out to Senior Living Advisor now for a free consultation. Your journey doesn’t end when you move into a senior living community or facility. With Senior Living Advisor, you can be sure to continue living your best life in a safe and supportive environment.