When you think about the future of your health, you know you need to exercise, eat right, and schedule check-ups with your doctor. What you may not know, however, is that most adults will need some form of long-term care at some point in their lives. However, most of those people are not prepared to pay for the care that they need. You can help yourself plan ahead and prepare to cover long-term care costs with these tips.

 Know the Benefits of Life Insurance

 Any plan for the future should include life insurance regardless of your health or age. With life insurance coverage, you can make sure that dependents and family members are financially taken care of in the event of your death. But you can also use life insurance to make sure you are taken care of if you ever need long-term care. Depending on your coverage and policy, you may be able to sell your insurance policy to get funds to cover the costs associated with long-term care. Even if you never need long-term care, you can use a cash payout to add to your retirement savings or pay for accessibility upgrades to your home. Either way, life insurance is essential to being prepared for the future.

 Have a Plan for Your Home

 If you are thinking about long-term care, you should think about how your home will be impacted. Home equity loans and lines of credit are a couple of the ways your home can help pay for long-term care in an assisted living or nursing home. You can also rent your home out to pay for care, but beware of the complications this presents to those reliant on Medicaid for care costs. If you want to stay in your home to receive care, you can opt for a reverse mortgage to help you out with home health care expenses.

 Sort Out Healthcare Coverage

 Long-term care is a form of healthcare most people will need at some point. However, long-term care may not be fully covered by certain forms of Medicare and Medicaid and even some health insurance plans. To make sure you have the means to get medical care, find a health insurance option that works for you and consider looking into long-term care coverage to help you out with uncovered expenses. Long-term care insurance tends to be less expensive if you are younger, so if this coverage seems right for you, opt in as soon as possible.

 Plan Now for Your Final Expenses

Many older adult and seniors who need care from assisted living centers and nursing homes are coming to the end of their lives. Thinking about death is never easy, but planning for your final wishes and expenses will reduce the burden taken on by loved ones who are left behind. In addition to life insurance, think about investing in final expense insurance, which can help pay for funeral costs, medical bills, and any other expenses that are left in your absence. It’s an added layer of protection that can provide comfort for your family when they need it the most.

Talk to Loved Ones About Your Wishes 

Having a conversation with your spouse and family members, including children, about your long-term care wishes and end-of-life plans is important. It’s never easy for the people you love to think of you ill, but there may come a time when you are unable to communicate your preferences. Sit down and talk about what kind of long-term care options you are most comfortable with. Figure out how you plan to pay for long-term care and let them know how to access related documents. You may also need to be aware of the documents needed to give them legal control to help you in your time of need.

It is always smart to plan for the future. Prepare for the costs of your care and health now to prevent financial stress for you and your family if you ever need the help of long-term care.  

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Article courtesy of Hazel Bridges,  Agingwellness.org