Addressing the potential threat of long-term care expenses may be one of the biggest financial challenges for individuals who are developing a retirement strategy.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services estimates that 69% of people over age 65 can expect to need extended care services at some point in their lives. So, understanding the various types of long-term care services – and what those services may cost – is critical as you consider your retirement approach.
What Is Long-Term Care?
Long-term care is not a single activity. It refers to a variety of medical and non-medical services needed by those who have a chronic illness or disability that is most commonly associated with aging.
Long-term care can include everything from assistance with activities of daily living – help dressing, bathing, using the bathroom, or even driving to the store – to more intensive therapeutic and medical care requiring the services of skilled medical personnel.
Long-term care may be provided at home, at a community center, in an assisted living facility, or in a skilled nursing home. And long-term care is not exclusively for the elderly; it is possible to need long-term care at any age.
How Much Does Long-Term Care Cost?
Long-term care costs vary state by state and region by region. The national average for care in a skilled care facility (semi-private in a nursing home) is $85,775 a year. The national average for care in an assisted living center is $45,000 a year. Home health aides cost a median $18,200 per year, but that rate may increase when a licensed nurse is required.
Individuals who would rather not burden their family and friends have two main options for covering the cost of long-term care: they can choose to self-insure or they can purchase long-term care insurance.
Many self-insure by default – simply because they haven’t made other arrangements. Those who self-insure may depend on personal savings and investments to fund any long-term care needs. The other approach is to consider purchasing long-term care insurance, which can cover all levels of care, from skilled care to custodial care to in-home assistance.
When it comes to addressing your long-term care needs, many look to select a strategy that may help them protect assets, preserve dignity, and maintain independence. If those concepts are important to you, consider your approach for long-term care
“Wherever you go, no matter what the weather, always bring your own sunshine.”
-Anthony J. D’Angelo
Recipe of the Week
For the Seasoning
- ¼ cup brown sugar, packed
- 2 Tbsp. paprika
- 3 Tbsp. chili powder (adjust for how spicy you prefer)
- 3 tsp. cumin
- 3 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 cup soy sauce
- 1 cup brown sugar, packed
- ⅔ cup ketchup
- ⅔ cup lemon juice
- 1½ tsp. ginger
- 6 lbs. pork baby back ribs
- Mix seasoning ingredients together and rub on ribs.
- Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
- Wrap ribs in aluminum foil and grill over indirect medium heat for 1 to 1½ hours or until tender.
- While the ribs are cooking, combine glaze ingredients and cook over medium heat until all the sugar is dissolved (about 7 minutes).
- Remove ribs from foil, place over direct heat, and brush with half the glaze. Grill for another 25 to 30 minutes, turning occasionally and brushing with the remaining glaze until they’re finished cooking.
Recipe adapted from Taste of Home
Tax Tips for Students with Summer Jobs
- If they have a self-employed job this summer, such as being a nanny, babysitter, or landscaper, they may have to pay their estimated taxdirectly to the IRS because they won’t have an employer withholding taxes for them.
- In addition, these self-employed students may be able to deduct some of their costs as business expenses. Tell your children or grandchildren to keep detailed records of their expenses this summer.
- Remember, tip income is taxable too (even if it’s cash).
- Although your little summer worker might not earn enough to owe income tax, they will likely still owe Social Security and Medicare taxes. Most employers will withhold these taxes or if they’re self-employed, they might have to pay these taxes themselves.
Do you know a young person trying to earn a little extra income this summer? Share these tips with them to make sure they are up on their tax requirements.
* This information is not intended to be a substitute for specific individualized tax advice. We suggest that you discuss your specific tax issues with a qualified tax professional.
Stay Safe in the Summer Heat
- Make sure to drink plenty of water, as you can easily get dehydrated out on the course. Keep water in your bag and in your cart, and take advantage of water stations on the course. In fact, you should start drinking water even before you start playing.
- Wearing sunscreen is important for anyone out in the sun, but it’s especially important for golfers because you’re out there for hours at a time. Choose a sunscreen that is SPF 30 or more and reapply it at least every two hours. You might also want to wear a sun-protective lip balm.
- Reconsider your club selection as you play in the summer because the ball goes farther when it’s hot outside.
Enjoy a beautiful summer day on the course, but make sure to take care of your body in the heat.
Tip adapted from GolfDiscount.com
Macro Tracking: Your New “Diet” Secret Weapon?
If you’re like a lot of people, you might want to lose a few pounds this summer. But tracking all the calories you eat can get tedious and restricting yourself rarely leads to long-term success.
Instead of tracking calories, paying attention to your macronutrients, which include protein, fat, and carbohydrates, might be a more sustainable option. First, calculate your total daily energy expenditure based on your age, weight, and activity level. Then, figure out your “macros” in grams.
Focusing on eating enough protein, carbs, and fat is a more-flexible way to “diet” compared to calorie counting, and it will teach you how to make healthier decisions moving forward. Eventually, many people who begin by tracking their macronutrients learn what to intuitively eat to reach their goals, and this approach can help you slim down, lose fat (but maintain muscle), and help you learn how to include the foods you love in your diet without being too restrictive.
Numbers, Numbers Everywhere
Have you ever wondered what the numbers on the bottom of plastic bottles and containers mean? Here’s a cheat sheet to some of the most-common types of plastics and how to recycle them:
#1 – Plastics labeled with a “1,” usually plastic soda or water bottles, are made out of polyethylene terephthalate, which is the easiest plastic to recycle! Even more reason to make sure they end up in the recycling bin.
#2 – Plastics labeled with a “2” are made from high-density polyethylene, which is also easy to recycle. This plastic is used for milk containers, detergent bottles, and other containers made out of thicker plastic.
#3 – Plastics with a #3 are polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plastics, which aren’t easily recyclable and are harmful to the environment. Many plastic toys, packaging, and furniture are made from #3 plastic.
#4 – Number 4 plastic is the type of plastic used for grocery bags, sandwich bags, and food wrapping. Generally, it can only be recycled into the same type of plastic.
This cheat sheet should help you understand when and how you can recycle your plastic!
Tip adapted from Green Living Tips