Long-Term Care Worries? We Have You Covered

$85,000 to $100,000. That is the current estimated cost per year to pay for long-term care.

Don’t think you’ll need it? Think again. There is a 70% chance that someone turning 65 today will need some type of long-term care. Those numbers will go up, as people live longer each year. Those care needs may be in the home or a senior living community.

While these numbers can be intimidating, there are options available right now to prepare you for your long-term care needs.

A Place At Home recently sat down with Matthew Hooker, a financial advisor with Edward Jones. He shared there’s not a specific age to start planning for long-term care. “I’ve seen people do it as early as 40-45. Because they have seen it, and they are willing to pay to avoid it.” He advises if you start early, then you can address it before it’s an issue. And that’s the best assurance you can get. In the past, long-term care policies were a use it or lose it proposition. It was incredibly expensive to carry a plan, and the rates would go up. Often when people transitioned to a fixed income.

Fortunately, that’s not the case these days. According to Matthew, now there are great options for long-term care policies.

Some of these are hybrid policies, encompassing coverage for both assisted living situations as well as life insurance. He explained some of the options available to help you prepare for your long-term care needs:


  • Integrate long-term care into your budget (self-insuring): This allows you the most flexibility in choosing your care providers, but paying out of pocket for long-term care can be costly and can be a gamble for your financial goals.
  • Long-term care insurance – If you choose to go through an insurance company, you have a couple of options:
    • Traditional long-term care insurance:
    • Policies and costs vary quite a bit, based on different things, such as your health, age, location of care, and more. It can ensure you won’t deplete your assets and income if you need long-term care. It also offers flexibility and possible shared benefits between two people. However, premiums are not fixed or guaranteed. You do still have to pay them, even if you don’t need care later.
    • Life insurance with long-term care benefits: these policies are newer and can allow you to use the death benefit to pay for long-term care if you need to. Premiums here are generally fixed, and if no care is required, it provides a life insurance death benefit. There are additional costs with these hybrid policies, and the long-term care coverage is often less than with a traditional long-term care policy.


Saving for your potential long-term care needs can be like a roulette wheel. How you decide to plan for your future depends on your individual needs.

Matthew advises that whatever you decide to do to prepare for long-term care as you age, make sure you have a game plan that makes sense. “I take people’s priorities, their picture of retirement, and give them different vehicles to get to where they want to go.” He also shares that a large part of his role is interpreting what people’s needs really are. “Long term care, assisted living, nursing home care, people use all these words interchangeably, and none of them mean the same thing.” Matthew knows the difference between all of these, as well as the ever-changing rules and regulations, changes in legislation, and especially long-term care and assisted living. Everyone’s situation and goals are different. “I work with people and interpret whoever they are as a person.”

“Their experience? That experience is what you have to get down to, and really understand.”

Matthew will help you plan for how you envision your future. He does comprehensive planning, including full-blown insurance and investments, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, 401k’s, cash accounts, money markets, refinancing your home (which he does not recommend), estate planning, and trusts. Helping people is something Matthew has a passion for. He shares, “I truly love this profession, this job. I get paid for it, thank God because I would do this anyway. I love helping folks.”

Whatever your current situation or future goals are, A Place At Home recommends speaking with Matthew to ensure your needs are met. And to ensure you are set up for any potential long-term care needs you may have in the years to come. You can reach him by visiting his website, sending him an email, or calling him at 402-630-7379. With all the uncertainty, especially with what we’ve seen this year, reaching out to Matthew might be one of the best things you can do to prepare for your future.

Need guidance looking for in-home care, or choosing an assisted living community? Reach out to us today to explore your options!



Why Long-Term Care Insurance Can Help: A Personal Story

In October of 2016, my grandmother broke her back when she fell from her stair lift chair. She had always been fairly independent, but with that fall, everything changed.

She now needed care 24 hours a day. To make matters more complicated, she also had a few other pre-existing conditions including aphasia (difficulty speaking), dementia, and a medical condition that required her to self-catheterize every four hours (something she had handled on her own for almost 20 years).

She is not unlike many other seniors today who have a few manageable medical issues, until a major incident like a fall happens. She was now completely dependent on us, and we needed a plan for her day-to-day care.

Many calls and several internet searches later, the few options available to us to care for her made our heads spin. It would be between $6,000-$8,000 a month for a skilled facility. And, with her medical needs, assisted living and independent living were not an option. The only other possibility we had was for a family member to learn to catheterize my grandmother and bring in added help from an in-home care company for baths, meal prep, and general safety while we were at work. This was definitely our best option as it would allow my grandmother to stay home, and it would be more affordable than a skilled facility.

We continued to research our options and discovered it would still be $3,200-$4,800 a month for in home care (40 hours a week so we could work). That was more than I would make in a month working full-time. Without Long-Term Care insurance, one of us had to quit our jobs to take care of her. It seemed crazy to me that it was more cost effective to quit working than it was to pay for care.

While my grandmother has since made an amazing recovery, it got me thinking about Long-Term Care (LTC) insurance. Where do I find out more information? How much is it? What does it cover?

I found that many of the same companies that offer your car, home, or life insurance, also sell LTC insurance. Many of them offer customizable plans that allow you to choose a length of time for payout (ex. 1-5 years), varying payout per day when a claim is filed ($100-$500/day), and also the ability to include medication management as an option. All of these factors determine your monthly premium. Plans range from $150-$2,000 a month, so there is really an option for everyone.

After the obstacles we faced trying to care for my grandmother, Long-Term Care insurance is definitely a part of my retirement planning. If I ever need long-term care, I want options, not obstacles.

–Jess Forbes, A Place at Home

Paying for Long-Term Care

Have you thought about how you might pay for long-term care? Do you believe that Medicare is an option? What does long-term care insurance cover?

These are questions that many individuals, young or old, may ask themselves about paying for long-term care.

There are several ways to pay for care as you age, but Medicare is not one of them. Medicare is an insurance offered to individuals 65 and over. It will help cover medical visits, hospitalization, rehabilitation, and prescription medications only. Depending on the type of plan you acquire will determine how much is covered.

There are four primary ways to pay for long-term care:

  1. Private (Savings, Pension, IRA, etc.)
  2. Long-Term Care Insurance
  3. Veteran’s Aid & Attendance
  4. Medicaid

Private Pay

Private pay is pretty straightforward. You write a monthly check or have it directly deposited from your bank account to the senior living community.

Long-Term Care Insurance

Long-Term Care Insurance, on the other hand, comes in many different ways, shapes, and forms. This type of insurance can cover partial or full, short, or long-term. It can even have a lifetime value. So, if you are young and think about your future, your best bet is to purchase a life insurance policy that will deduct for long-term care when and if needed.

Veteran’s Aid and Attendance

Veteran’s Aid and Attendance is how many veterans and their spouses or widows can attain assistance. If you or your spouse have served in the armed forces during a specific time frame, fall under a financial parameter, and need support for daily living activities, this monthly aid can be a way to help pay.


Medicaid is an option if there is little or no money remaining. There are several senior living communities that will accept Medicaid upon admittance. Some require you to pay privately for a set number of months before rolling over.

If you are considering a move to the next place to call home, we can help. Our free Senior Living Alternatives service can help find the best way to pay for your future plans. Contact our Senior Living Advisor today. We are happy to help pave the way or navigate any of these payment options.

Useful resources about paying for care as you age:


What is Long-Term Care


Veteran’s Aid and Attendance