Planning for assisted living and long-term care is something that can’t be put off. It feels like you have ages to prepare for it, but then before you know it, it’s time. The decision to move into assisted living is a difficult one, but you can plan for it with your spouse.
Long-term care can be tricky, so let’s take a look at the basics.
It’s no secret that assisted living is expensive, which is why you and your spouse need to have a strong financial plan in place to prepare for it together.
According to the National Center for Assisted Living, the national median rates for assisted living services are $4,000 per month or $48,000 per year. Depending on where you live, care could cost up to $80,000 per year!
However, if you and your spouse go to assisted living together, you likely will not have to pay double the rent. Since couples live in the same apartment, housing is covered, and you’ll just need to pay for the extra meals, medical care, and other miscellaneous expenses.
The aging process varies from person to person, so you may need different levels of care than your spouse. If your spouse goes to assisted living and you do not, it can be a challenging road to navigate.
One of the best things you can do is plan ahead and start visiting assisted living facilities early. Visiting facilities together early helps ensure that you find the perfect place on your terms, and decide whether or not you can find a facility that will meet both of your needs throughout retirement.
Alternatively, you may find an assisted living facility that allows you to live together for a period of time, then have one person who requires more care “graduate” to a facility with more assistance available while the other can stay in their apartment or move somewhere nearby.
Every assisted living facility is unique, so it’s essential to do your due diligence. For a facility that accepts duos, they most commonly use a tiered pricing model with bundled services.
Here’s how it often works: you would be placed into a lower tier if you needed a lower amount of care. If your needs increased, so would the costs. There are also fee-for-service facilities that charge for health and services needs a la carte.
You don’t have to navigate long-term care alone—this is the time to lean on each other! While you need to know the details of what you’re looking for in a facility, you’ll also need to answer other lifestyle questions like what you should do with your home while one of you is in assisted living or if you’re interested in long-term care insurance.
If you need assistance navigating through these conversations, we’d be happy to help. Get in contact with a member of our team today to get started.
Wood Smith Advisors, a woman-owned Registered Investment Advisor (RIA), is a fee-only financial services firm that partners with its clients to simplify their financial lives. We focus on women, entrepreneurs, and individuals with complex financial situations, providing objective and competent advice, education and services to help them develop and build their businesses and reach their financial goals. We can be reached by clicking here.
"Finance Made Simple" blog posts are intended for educational purposes and not for specific advice. Each person’s situation is different. Consult your financial advisor for advice relating to topics discussed.