Long Term Care Insurance Expert Shares How To Shop For LTC
You may understand the risk of needing long term care at some point in your life but few individuals know how to shop for long term care insurance protection according to a talk given this week by a leading industry expert.
"While much has been written about the risk and cost involved should you need long term care, the vast majority of consumers have no idea what questions to ask when they start investigating their planning options," explains Jesse Slome, executive director of the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance. The head of the national trade organization addressed consumers providing tips on shopping for LTC insurance protection.
"You are only going to buy long term care insurance one time in your life and so you had better do it correctly," Slome stated. Few consumers understand four essential elements to getting the best coverage for the best cost.
"Know that costs for virtually identical coverage can vary by as much as 100 percent," Slome reports. Each insurer he notes sets their own rates and each offers different discounts that can greatly reduce the cost. Be sure to ask what discounts are available to you.
"If you have health conditions or take a few prescription medications, you need to shop your health," Slome advises. Conditions that could be rejected or cost more with one insurer may be acceptable to another. "Before you even ask how much coverage costs, ask if you can health qualify," he suggests.
With fall open enrollments just around the corner, the expert explained that coverage offered through an employer group may not always be the cheapest option. "Some group plans do not offer discounts to married couples or to those in better health," he adds. "It really never hurts to work with an independent party and ask for a free comparison."
Finally, ask the insurance professional you are working with whether they have access to policies from only one insurer or can offer you multiple options from the four or five leading insurers. "Ask how many policies they sell a year, too," Slome concluded. "The price is important - but understanding the small print will be even more important come claim time and typically working with a knowledgeable specialist will be to your advantage."
The counterpart to our last Top 10 is here, this month we unveil the least expensive states to receive care. With nearly every corner of the U.S. outside of the Northeast on the list, it's time to find out- Is your state or retirement destination on the list?
The Top 10 starts now!
10. North Carolina
This popular vacation destination boasts being the 10th least expensive state to receive care in the country. The median cost for care comes in at $33,600 per year.
9a. South Dakota
The midwestern state of South Dakota is most known for its National Parks and monuments but it has something else to be proud of. The Southern Dakota comes in as the number 9 state with a median cost for care of $33,000 per year.
When you think of Nevada, you think of those big time casinos and catch phrases such as "what happens here, stays here". It's a safe bet to say Nevada is a great place to get care, they come in tied with South Dakota, the median yearly cost is $33,000.
The Sooner state is mostly known for its agriculture and natural gas exports but it is starting to be known for its low cost of care. Oklahoma comes in at number 7 on our list with a median cost for care of $32,970 per year.
The peaceful state of Arkansas comes in as the 6th least expensive state to receive care. The median cost for care is $32,400 per year.
Florida is one of the biggest vacation and retirement destinations in the country so it's great to see it make the top 5. If you're planning your retirement here, you'll be happy to know the median cost for care comes in at $31,950 per year.
The home of the Great Salt Lake lands the number 4 spot on the list. Utah has a median cost for care of $31,770 per year.
3. North Dakota
The Northern Dakota also makes our list, coming in very low at number 3. It has a median cost of care of a nice and even $30,000 per year. Did you know; Milk is the official state beverage?
The "Show Me State" is going to show you more than the Gateway to the West as it is the second least expensive state in the country to get care. The median cost for care comes in under 30k, at a very low $29,040 per year.
The nations number one producer of peanuts, pecans and peaches comes in at number 1 on our list of least expensive states. Georgia tops the list with a median cost for care of $28,800. Georgia's cost is less than half of the most expensive state to receive care.
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