Many people during our current era try to do everything possible to keep themselves fit and healthy. There is a lot of information out there, and things are different than they were 30 or 40 years ago.
Yes, it is great to indulge from time to time, but there is so much relevant information available that it is hard to ignore it.
Lifestyle choices are at the root of many life-threatening diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and some types of cancer. People who understand this take it to heart, and they try to enjoy life, but they still make wise choices in the big picture.
Trying to keep yourself healthy as you are getting older is fantastic, but when it comes to elder law matters, you need to make sure that you avoid overconfidence. Let’s look at a perspective that can get you into trouble.
If you are in good shape as you enter your senior years, you clearly understand the fact that there are nursing homes and assisted living communities, but you may assume that your good health will hold sway throughout your life. This makes sense on the surface, and the choices that you made before you entered your late sixties and seventies may serve you well.
However, there is another thing to think about. It is logical to assume that people who make healthy choices are going to live long lives, right? If you live a long life, there are certain statistical realities that apply to everyone.
Being able to get around physically is one thing, and many people who are in their eighties and beyond can in fact take care of many of their day-to-day needs on that level. Of course, there are those who cannot.
In addition to this, there is also the matter of mental competence. The Alzheimer’s Association does a lot of great work in this area, and you should certainly drop by their website to educate yourself, because this is a disease that impacts a significant percentage of families.
Alzheimer’s strikes one out of every eight seniors citizens, and it gets worse when you are talking about the oldest old. This term is used to define people who are at least 85. Nearly half of people who are 85 years of age and older have contracted Alzheimer’s.
A significant percentage of people who have Alzheimer’s disease ultimately reside in nursing homes. When you add in nursing home residents who need the care for other underlying reasons, if you live into your eighties, potential nursing home care becomes a very distinct reality.
Paying for Nursing Home Care
Your first thought may be that your Medicare coverage will pay for long-term care costs if you ever need help with your day-to-day needs. This is a logical assumption, but the hard truth is that Medicare does not pay for long-term care. You and your family will have to look elsewhere if the bills start to stream in.
Dallas Long-Term Care Costs
Now that we have explained why you should care about long-term care costs, we can take a look at the state of affairs. If you look at the country in its entirety, the average annual charge for a private room in a nursing home is just over $90,000. The situation is more bleak in some areas of the country. For example, in Sacramento, the median annual charge for a private room is almost $151,000.
Here in the Dallas area, we are somewhat fortunate when you compare the situation here to the costs elsewhere, but they can still be quite damaging to your legacy if you were to pay out-of-pocket. At the present time, the median annual charge for a Dallas-area private room is $78,475.
Prices are expected to rise by about one percent per year over the next five years, so there is growth, but it is relatively slow. At the same time, if you were to require long-term care 20 years from now, and the costs went up by one percent each year, the accumulation would be considerable. The price that you would be looking at would be far beyond the current costs.
We should touch upon the fact that the average length of stay is around 2.3 years, and 10 percent of people in nursing homes run up bills for at least five years before they pass away.
Have We Gotten Your Attention?
All of this very relevant information should have gotten your attention. If you would like to explore nursing home asset protection solutions, download our special report on the subject. This report is free, and you can access your copy through this page: Dallas, TX Nursing Home Asset Protection.