For many Americans, saving for assisted living care isn’t a big priority. Many people assume they won’t need assisted living, others are too busy saving their assets for different goals, and still others presume that all their health care needs will be covered by government subsidies. If you or a loved one have decided that you need to move into a retirement community but you aren’t sure how to pay for it, you’re in the right place. Today we’re discussing how to pay for assisted living. Although costs will vary widely based on where you live, the level of care you need, and the services and amenities you’re looking for, we’ll help you analyze your options and figure out how to pay for assisted living.
How to Pay for Assisted Living
As you’re probably well aware, more and more people are living in retirement communities during their sunset years, and that number is expected to rise as the Baby Boomers become seniors. Unfortunately, many of these people haven’t anticipated the high costs of assisted living (if you’re curious, the current average cost of a one-bedroom apartment in an assisted living facility is $3,500 per month, source). So if you’re reading this as a young person, start planning and saving today! If you’re reading this as a senior, your options are more limited but that doesn’t mean you should give up. So if you’re wondering how to pay for assisted living, scroll down to view some of your options.
If you’re still young but you’re thinking ahead, consider creating personal funds that you can use in your senior years for assisted living. These funds might come from a 401k plan, an IRA, the sale of your home, or a reverse mortgage (in which you borrow against the value of your house). You could also convert the death benefit of your life insurance policy into funds for assisted living care.
LONG-TERM CARE INSURANCE
Young people should also look into long-term care insurance, a type of insurance that covers home-based health services, assisted living facilities, and/or nursing home care. However, most of these insurance policies will come with restrictions. Be sure to research your options thoroughly beforehand so that you understand exactly what it is you’re signing up for.
Although veterans’ benefits won’t always apply, if you’re qualified, you should look into when and how you can use the benefits for assisted living. Typically, you will need to (at the very least) present your military discharge papers, show that your health condition warrants the care, have your doctor vouch for your need, show that your financial situation warrants the help, and file an application.
In some but not all cases, Medicaid will cover assisted living care for seniors. However, the payment statutes very from state to state and are based on great financial need (to learn more about your state’s policies, click here). The amount you receive for senior care will likely be limited and Medicaid will impose restrictions on the care you receive. Please note that Medicare does not cover assisted living care.
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Now that you know how to pay for assisted living, it’s time to start your search! If you’re looking for a senior living facility in the Midwest, be sure to check out Hearthside Senior Living Place. Our eight senior living facilities are located in Missouri, Arkansas, and Tennessee. If you would like to take a tour of one of our facilities, please click here.