It’s no surprise that family dynamics are shifting among Americans as lifespans lengthen and half the population chooses to remain single. However, financial priorities remain intact, like realigning your spending habits and budget to combat inflation and saving for big-ticket items or the ultimate retirement. As an affordable financial advisor in the Bay Area, Humanity Wealth is here to provide comprehensive financial services that cater to your individual needs and goals.
This includes estate planning which often include long-term care coverage.
The image of the modern family has shifted over time from the Leave It To Beaver scenario, comprised of a husband, wife, and children. While many families have simiilar make-ups, a recent survey reported that:
- Last year there were approximately 46.4% (117.6 million) unmarried Americans 18 and over
- This year, nearly 50% (126.9 million) are single
- The survey results was taken among prime working-age adults
If you’re wondering what marital status has to do with your wealth, it means that estate planning is not just for people married with children. As a matter of fact, it’s proven that singles have a higher chance of needing long-term care, so having a plan to support your possible needs in the future is of the utmost importance to preserve your hard-earned savings.
It may be helpful to know that estate and legacy planning is for anyone over 18 with assets, such as savings accounts, investments, or real property.
What is estate planning?
An estate plan includes legal documents defining how an individual wants their property and assets distributed based on their wishes or their family’s needs after they die or become incapacitated. Because laws can change regarding estate planning, it’s vital to update this plan regularly, especially if you experience a major life event such as getting married, losing a spouse, having children, etc. The information or life circumstances of heirs or beneficiaries may change, too, over the course of time.
It may be in your best interest to work with a financial advisor to help you, your parents or your grandparents create an estate plan, which can:
- Give you the power to choose who will inherit what
- Provide you the ability to name your children’s guardian if you pass prematurely
- Reduce taxes on what you leave behind to your heirs
- Minimize the chances of family struggles if a legal battle occurs
Consider working with a financial advisor in Newark or San Ramon who can help you develop and execute a well-thought-out and thorough estate plan for your nest egg.
Your parent’s estate and legacy after long-term care costs
If your parents or grandparents do not have long-term care coverage, there’s a good chance their life savings could dwindle quickly if they require health care over an extended period that is not covered by their regular insurance coverage. Without long-term care coverage, their nest egg could shrink substantially over time, which could impact their estate plan and assets they want to pass to family.
If your loved one passes away before creating an estate plan, the courts will often have the final say in who gets their assets. Keep in mind that this process can take years to go through probate while racking up attorney fees. We want to help you avoid paying extra costs that are not necessary and ensure there are no financial burdens passed on to loved ones.
If you have not talked about health care preferences, should something happen to your family members, it’s worth discussing to ensure they (and you) are protected physically, mentally, and financially.
Who needs long-term care?
New research shows that long-term care needs among retirees vary widely but that a strong indicator of how much assistance you will need depends on how healthy you are in your late 60s. A survey shows that:
- 19% of married women are estimated to need none at all versus 14% of those who are single
- 17% of married men are estimated to need no long-term care support compared to 13% who are unmarried
How soon should I plan for long-term care?
In the scope of retirement planning, experts say that the uncertainty of long-term care is what can make it feel challenging. Determining when and how to prepare for unknown costs can feel like a shot in the dark if you don’t know your options and what will fit your needs and financial goals in the long run. Working with a financial advisor in San Ramon or Newark can remove the guesswork.
It’s safe to say that the sooner you start, the better! We can help you ease into conversations about retirement and estate planning with your parents or grandparents. We understand that potential injury, illness, death, and the importance of creating a will, are not the most exciting topics of conversation – but they are vital, nonetheless.
It’s wise to start thinking about it for yourself as well: Planning and setting aside money now versus later can potentially build more funds (while you’re thriving) for when it may be needed down the road.
Pros and cons of long-term care insurance
Long-term care has many components to it is important to understand all aspects of it. Let’s review the pros and cons.
Pros of long-term care coverage:
- Long-term care coverage can provide peace of mind and financial freedom later in life
- It’s worthwhile if used (there is coverage for funds not used)
- It can cover expensive out-of-pocket costs for long-term care
- You or your loved ones may not have to be the main source of caregivers
Cons to long-term care coverage:
- You might not qualify
- Benefits may not deploy as you need them
- It can be difficult to figure out how much insurance you might need
- There’s no certainty in pricing
Bottomline, it comes down to selecting the right plan for you or your loved ones. Get started with financial planning in San Ramon or Newark!
For $50 a month, you can have Humanity Wealth Advisors on your team for your financial planning along your journey. To learn how long-term care coverage can serve you and your family, call us or schedule an appointment. today!
Related article: How to plan for long-term care costs in retirement.