Advice for Women in Retirement

It’s unbelievable, David, that we’ve already reached the point here in 2019 that it’s May. Time moving along as the Roadmap to Retirement always does. The road just doesn’t stop.

That’s right Joe. There’s that theory that as you age, time goes faster. I don’t know if I buy into that, but it certainly seems like that’s what happens.

I think I do buy into that.

Yeah, right.

I used to believe that. But, to me the time moves so quickly now and I’m on the beginning part of the road, so I can’t say what that road’s going to look like in 10 or 15 years. But, if I’m duplicating what I’m doing today 15 years from now, and perhaps that’s a reality, the time will continue to move.

Yeah, no question about it. And again, that’s why planning is so important. That’s why we do this show. That’s why we do our workshops. And then, certainly offer those complimentary consultations, which we have literally been busting at the seams with those. We’re doing kind of one work shop a week right now, just because we can’t find enough time to do more because all the requests that we get from the radio show, from our website and from the workshops we do. But we’re happy to do it. We absolutely love doing it. Love meeting the people that we do. It’s great conversations, and we love having people kind of walking out the door with certainty versus uncertainly related to their Roadmap for Retirement.

Yeah, I have a great nod to that point. It’s interesting sometimes how things tie together. I got just a great little hit on Twitter, earlier in the week somebody reached out to me via Twitter just to say, “Hey, love the show. Love the conversational style of the show. I know you’re on a radio property, a big radio station where there’s a lot of different advice given throughout the day, but I really love the way that we deliver the information and then of course, the theory behind educating the listeners to become smarter about their Roadmap to Retirement.”

Yeah, and when we started back, I guess 18 months ago, that was all part of our discussions. Bret, Karen and myself had never done a radio show before, and we didn’t really have any idea. All we had were samples of what we heard on this property or other similar properties to it. We instantly said, “That’s not something we want to do.” Right? We didn’t want to offer an infomercial that was just full of with product solicitation. We wanted to come at it as pure advocates and come at it with pure education, and give the listening audience a lot of good quality data to review for themselves, and then try to come up with what makes most sense for their retirement roadmap.

So I think we’ve stayed very authentic with that, very true to that from a core perspective. And I know we’re proud, we hear the ratings keep increasing and getting responses on different social media platforms kind of proves that. We certainly see more and more people showing up at our workshops because they listen to the radio show. Our goal, our mission, our crusade is going to be to continue on with that strategy of really trying to educate and we’ve got a great show lined up for that today.

We’ll continue to invite you if you haven’t done so already to join the Thrive Army, to become more educated about your Roadmap to Retirement. And then as David said, get into the stampede and be part of the complementary weekly workshop. And to your point David, there is only one workshop scheduled or one day scheduled next week. Now, there’s two workshops on the same day, so we’ll give people an opportunity over in the Cherry Hill area, an opportunity to attend, and then on the Pennsylvania side, at the Southampton Free Library, we’ll tell you more about that when we get into the commercial break. Bret Elam is here. Bret, what’s on your agenda today? One thing about your Roadmap to Retirement, your Roadmap? Well I imagine we’ll always run through Lincoln Financial Field, now that the 2019 schedule is out, you have your Eagles Season Tickets, and what’s on your agenda for today?

You know what’s funny Krause, is my email to renew my tickets went to my spam. So, I almost missed my tickets this year.

Oh.

Oh, don’t miss out on those.

Caught it three weeks late, so I was like, “We’ve got to figure that one out.” Technology’s great when it works.

When it works, absolutely. What’s on the agenda today?

Yeah, so we’re only a couple percent off the all-time market high, so just wanted to chat about that a little bit. We actually met somebody who is a regular listener of the radio show that we had the opportunity to meet last week, who actually did not come to a workshop whatsoever. Just like we talk about here on the radio show, feel free to come in and schedule an appointment, and we’d love to take you through that Thrive Retirement Roadmap for you. So just chat about that a little bit as well.

Yeah, and it’s a good point to bring that up, because sometimes our lives get so busy. Sometimes you think, “Hey, I would love to come on a seven o’clock, on a Wednesday night. But I can’t. Does that mean that I can’t come in?” The answer, as Bret said, is no.

Karen Bezar is also in for the discussion today. Karen what will you be talking about today?

Five money mistakes women and couples should avoid.

Yes, good, good topic. And I can probably say with some unconditional guarantee that all five will be relevant and very meaningful. In a world where a lot of our millennial’s I think are looking to move to a cashless society, perhaps that will be part of it. David, I’ll give you last word, just to set the stage. I know you’re coming up again at the end, before, in our final segment, what are you covering again today?

So, one of the topics that we’ve been spending a ton of time, because of just many, many questions, is related to long-term healthcare insurance, and what to do about it. Should I buy it? Should I not buy it? What are my options? So on and so forth. So we’re going to talk a little bit about that today.

All right. Good stuff. We’ll get started.

As David said, Bret mentioned it when we came on, and Karen experiences it every week, the workshops are continuing to expand, and we send a hearty thank you out to the Delaware Valley for responding. We’re asking the listeners to consider coming to the complementary workshop in exchange for that incredible information, all complementary and nothing for sale.

 

Nothing for sale. Before I begin real quick, Krause, a year ago. I just want to send a quick shout-out to my mom who turned 71 here this morning. I guess, all day.

Oh wow, that’s good stuff.

So a year ago, battling cancer. So she’s on that long road to recovery, so things are going well. So throw a shout-out there to mom. But, yeah, we had the opportunity to meet someone who actually bypassed coming to our seminar. So many people we meet listen to us on the radio, then they come to our workshop and they come in to office. And some gentlemen that we had met with, they came in and met with one of my colleagues. And I’m actually going to be meeting with them next week. And Andrew, who’s one of our staff members here at Thrive, he goes, “Bret, this person I met with had to have come through the radio.” I go, “What do you mean?”He came in here, he knew what he was doing on social security, and he was going to spend down his IRA assets, so he can get more tax efficient into retirement.”

I love it.

Managing your money is what we do!

And you heard the strategy being played out, things that we talk about. He didn’t come in and say, “I wanted to buy this mutual fund, this stock, this annuity, this long-term care product, this life insurance solution, etcetera.” We talked about strategy, and it’s about that Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review. And again, people wanting to come in and get that complementary offer. Again, nobody ever plans to fail but rather fails to plan. So again, looking forward to sitting back down. I’ll try not to use any names here on the air, with that gentleman. But we’re now hitting darn near the highs again on the stock markets, we’re only a couple percent away earlier this week, and it’s something that David talks about during our workshops an awful lot.

As we’re hitting those all-time highs, because remember, the market does nothing but go up. We have to be conscious of that. We’re now at 10 years when we see every bear market that’s out there and now we’re pushing over into that 11th year now. So again, being conscious and being ready for when those times come but it’s a comment that we make a lot of times crowd see that, again, risk is for people who don’t have what you have, it’s your job just to simply make sure you don’t lose. And we talk about our different bucket approaches where we need to have some money that’s readily available in cash, we need to have monies and some alternatives.

We’re big believers in the stock market as well, again, just having the appropriate amount of asset allocation.

But we start talking about some alternatives that are out there, and we’ve seen a slew of them this past week Krause. So again, we have the opportunity to put plans together for people around the Delaware Valley here, typically in that neighborhood around 30 of them on a given week. And this past week, we saw a slew of people that understand that they already have all that money that they will need, and they’re going through retirement. But they had some of these solutions that were called annuities. And when we talked about annuities, we sometimes call it the good, the bad and the ugly related to that.

And so, there were two circumstances that we had seen last week Krause where a net worth was, one at $3,000,000 and other one was at $5,000,000 and all their expenses were being met from their social security and their pensions. So, it sounds like a pretty good problem at the end of the day, where if anything, when we go through that Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review, you see the sticker shock in their eyes opening up of what their tax situation is going to look like at the age of 17 and a half. Because both of them had significant requirement on distributions that they were going to have to take. But in both circumstances, each one of the couples had an annuity with what they calls an income rider on it, which is a very popular annuity out there today. For some people that may not have a pension, realize that pensions are annuities at the end of the day.

These people bought themselves a pension to get into retirement. There has to be an appropriate reason as to why you should have that annuity at the end of the day. I get the double shrug shoulder, I’m not sure, it’s like, “What do you mean? Well, I’ve been working with my advisor, Bob for the past 20 years and everything they say, is the truth.” And it’s like, “Let me explain to you how that annuity works.” And they’re under the assumption because when you get these things called income riders, again know how am I going to get that guaranteed payment into the future? Insurance company will give you a guarantee of like a 5%, maybe 6%, maybe 7%. Each and every year that you’re not taking any money from that annuity, the insurance companies going to give you a guaranteed interest rate, not for you to keep from a death benefit perspective, not for you necessarily to take money from when you want it, but to turn on an additional pension payment in retirement.

And so when you diagnose that, you share that with people. And again, number one, the scariest thing is people don’t know why. They don’t know why they own those annuities that they have. But then when you explain to them, like “Oh, I’m getting guaranteed 5%.” Yeah, but that’s not really your money. That’s for you to get another guaranteed check in the future. And they’re like, “Oh, I don’t need any more income. Why in the heck would I need more?” And it’s like, “That’s exactly right. You just said that.” The last thing you need is more income at the end of the day. And what’s scary about those solutions Krause, number one, people don’t necessarily need more income. But number two, and we talked about in the insurance in the annuity world, they’re paying a fee to get more guarantee of something that they don’t need at the end of the day. And if there’s anything that’s more, that can that can take away, I guess, from having a successful retirement is not being conscious enough about all the fees that you’re paying within a portfolio. And the solutions that you have.

Over the past couple weeks, we talked about how Vanguard put up that great article saying why it’s important to work with an advisor and they’re making money for you in this fashion, whereas so many times people are frugal with the fees that they are paying but they don’t understand the fees that they’re paying within the solutions that a lot of times are unnecessary. Like when we start talking about, again as fee-based planners here at Thrive Financial Services, where when we have a fee that our clients are paying to thrive, tax efficiency, income distribution, legacy enhancement, how to avoid Medicare surcharges and the investments. When people aren’t conscious enough about the internal cost, the cost that you’re paying within their fees for things they may not necessarily need.

We start looking at things like C shares. Again we meet a lot of people out there, mutual funds out there, there’s different share classes. And we’re always conscious of when people have these thing called C shares. They’re mutual funds, there’s A shares, there’s B shares, there’s C shares, there’s I shares, there’s different classes of shares. They feel like, “Hey Bret, I’m not paying anybody any kind of unnecessary payments.” Well, to be honest with you, those are the highest fee mutual funds that you can find out there is when there’s a C share. You’re absolutely paying fees. They’re just not as transparent, like others of us are out here in this industry.

And why would you think that? Just because we don’t know, right? We don’t bother to look, to understand the details, I guess. Is that the answer?

Yeah. And I think it’s transparency.

Yeah.

I think there’s so many people in our industry, in the financial services industry where it’s like, “You know what, I can still make the same revenue as I would over there, but it’s easier for me if I just put them that solution over there. I’m going to get my same revenue if I tried to explain it to them in this fashion. So, I’m just going to again take the path of least resistance because no one really asked me any questions.” Because people are always using big fancy words, big fancy jargon in our industry to try and make us feel smartest. And you as a consumer feeling dumbest. Those are two made up words.

And that’s not us here at Thrive. We don’t try to use big words and try to make you not understand what we’re saying and say that’s why you need to work with us. It’s again, putting our hand out there and saying, “This is a partnership.” We want you to understand why as much as you want to understand why we’re making the recommendations that we’re making. But when we start seeing solutions and we start seeing inventories of solutions that don’t make sense whatsoever, it’s scary and you always hope that people are fiduciaries and acted in the best capacity, making the best recommendations for the people they’re sitting in front of. But sometimes again, it makes you wonder again, just last week, we were talking about the difference between being independent or being captive. And does that person just work for the Baskin-Robbins, the vanilla factory where they can only offer me the same thing over and over and over and over again.

Again, we talked about the importance of being independent that’s out there. And Karen talking about the Midwest and Baskin-Robbins last week as well, where it’s important that you have so many, 31 flavors that we have so many different arrows in our quiver that when there is a reason for a solution is that we go out there and have that right solution. And again, never be afraid the challenge the person. So many people that we meet could be self-managed, but we meet a lot of people that do work with other advisors as well, whether it’s Vanguard or Merrill Lynch or Wells Fargo, whoever it is. And again, if you’re paying a fee to somebody, realize there’s got to be some kind of value that typically is coming back on the other end. And when you’re not feeling it, it’s what we put, what we believe, we give people the inventory, the ammunition to go add some of those pressures to their existing advisors.

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We had somebody in here last week and we were kind of talking about the goods and the bads of what they had, and they said, “Bret, just do me a favor, let me call my advisor.” Because they were good and ticked off, because they were one of the ones that had one of those annuities that we spoke about that didn’t make any sense of why they had it whatsoever. And I got an email that they just simply copied me on the email they sent to their other advisor where I guess they were good and tech didn’t even want to have a telephone conversation with somebody.

They just wanted to give them the common courtesy said, I’m leaving. But at the end of the day, they are good and fed up of not understanding, not knowing why. And we sat there, and I said, “Tell me about life three years ago.” We’re trying to give that other advisor the benefit of the doubt as to why they may have done it, but we couldn’t come up with any reason whatsoever. And again, we need to be conscious of the whys and why we’re doing things. I’m retired, because there’s got to be a purpose Krause.

It’s very, very important and you cannot take it lightly. Bret I’m going to cut you off because we only got a minute left.

That’s okay.

But that’s truth. Can’t do it, you’ve got to put importance on every detail.

And that’s the education. That’s the advocacy. It’s why we talked the way we talked about here on the radio. It’s why we don’t have steak dinner and red wine at our workshops. Again, the cookies and the coffee are good. People are looking to try and solidify that plan heading into retirement. And that’s what our passion is. That’s what that Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review is all about. So whether it’s here on the radio, whether it’s coming out to a workshop, whether it’s calling us at 1-800-516-5861 and you can always visit us at our website to make an appointment for that complimentary session as well.

Right. Good stuff from Bret Elam today on Roadmap to Retirement, the radio show. As we go to a commercial break, I’ll tell you about a bullet point of a short story that I saw on NBC 10. An estimated 2.1 million people in Pennsylvania, accounting for a third of the workforce, have employers offering no retirement savings account or pension plan. If you’re out there, please consider getting in touch with Thrive Financial Services.

Special thanks to Bret Elam for providing our good opening segment. We will now springboard into our conversation now with Karen Bezar. Hello Karen, how are you?

Good. How are you doing today?

We’re doing really well. I’ve got my pen, my notebook in front of me. I love to scratch down notes and go through some of the bullet points. Remind our listeners which direction you’re going to take them in this segment.

Yeah. I have from my favorite website wiserwomen.org five money mistakes women and couples should avoid. So I have seen a lot of these mistakes in what we do on a daily basis. And so, here’s a list, we have the five things. And number one is the one I’m championing all the time. Women tend to not get involved in managing the family’s finances. This is from the wiserwomen.org. These are situations that they’ve come across or women are telling them that they’re finding out that this is what they did. So, if you’re out there listening, try to avoid these. Number one, again, not getting involved in managing family’s finances. Many women manage the daily finances or make sure bills are paid on time. But you also need to know where your family’s money is, how it’s being spent, where the information about all the retirement plans are located, what other assets are there and what are they worth. Make sure you are making both the short and long-term financial decisions together.

Yeah, if you did not get to number two today, I would repeat number one.

Right.

Because not only is it a very important point. We’ve talked about it on the program before, where we have given real life examples of when a spouse dies, and then it creates a scenario or situation that’s difficult to manage at that point.

I know I met with somebody this week and she works in counseling in that area and I can’t remember the full conversation we were having. But she said the same thing that it’s just so important that women learn these things. On our part, pension decisions are really important decisions to make, because once you make it, you make it and that you don’t realize that there’s different options out there. And sometimes it’s too late in the end, when the decision’s already been made. You can’t change it. They think they’re getting certain amount of income and it’s not there when their husband or spouse passes away.

The Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review will ensure a comfortable retirement

I was just going to say just for clarity, that’s correct. Once you make it, you own it.

Right, that’s it. Period, end of story. And another area which is really important that women by now think about is you’re married and you and your spouse have a credit card together. You each have a credit card, you might have a different number than your spouse, but just remember to make sure it’s a joint credit card, not just you’re an authorized user on that credit card, because if your spouse passes away, that credit card, it goes away. So you don’t have your credit cards or certain things anymore that you think you have. It’s all taken away from you. So that’s just an area again, just you want to have your own credit as well. Number two, using all of your money for everyday expenses. While partners money goes into investments which grow and grow and grow, women often end up spending all of their money getting food on the table sneakers on the kids feet, with nothing left to put in their own savings.

It’s a good idea to have your own savings and investment accounts rather than just sharing accounts that are only in your partner’s names. I can’t tell you how many times this occurs. When I sit down with people, there’s a sheet that they have to fill out. We actually have people separate their funds. “How is your savings? Is it qualified money?” Non-qualified. It’s the first time. Sometimes they take a look at everything and really put it out in front of them. But women, husbands and wives, spouses, partners, whatever you want to say, they can each have their own IRAs. Remember IRA is Individual Retirement Account. It’s never a joint account. So sometimes women have come in here surprised, and they don’t have their own IRAs, but their husband has one.

But you can each have your own Roth IRA or your traditional Roth IRA. Even if you’re not working and you’re working in the home, you can still have an IRA and you can still contribute to it. And it’s a good way to save in taxation down the road if you use a Roth or just to save on taxation now it’s traditional. Number three, trying to pay for half of everything. If your partner makes more money than you, let the partner pay more of the expenses rather than just splitting everything 50/50. You could each contribute a percentage of your income towards joint expenses rather than contributing an equal amount, which makes sense so then you can have your own savings, because one out of every two marriages does end in divorce. So it’s good to have some of this in in your own court.

Number four, I agree very strongly with this one. Not getting professional advice soon enough. This is particularly true for women going through a divorce, or other major changes in their lives such as marriage or widowhood. You may be liable for any debts your spouse gets into while you’re married. If your spouse is hiding income or depleting money from jointly held accounts, you need to find out right away and get a lawyer to help you. In addition, you need to know how assets can be divided during a divorce. For example, you must divide a pension at the time of the divorce and not when your spouse retires. Because at that point, it’s too late. wiserwomen.org has a great brochure but you can download it and it is for women who are going through divorce and I do remember reading that. And I have met with women where it was too late and they didn’t have access to a pension and it was a bad divorce. They don’t like each other.

Yeah. So there’s not much communication going on there. And I imagine the pension is not one of the things that’s on the surface. Everybody’s worried about the income now or what we can divide, pension maybe doesn’t even come up, I would imagine.

Right. And some women just don’t know or again, they just don’t want to know. I mean, it’s great to have your partner. Hey, I have a great partner and I tell David every day that I’m never leaving him, I’m going to be with him for the rest of his life.

But unfortunately, yeah, it’s nice to have somebody take care of everything. But you got to know what’s going on. You never know what’s going to happen. And number five is not realizing that you may end up living on your own someday. Women live longer than men on average, and are likely to find themselves living on their own at some point in their later years. And again, it’s due to being widowed, divorced or you may never be married. It’s important that you are prepared to manage your own finances and plan accordingly for the years you may live alone. One way to protect yourself is to make sure that your name appears on all your family accounts and investments. Make sure you’re the beneficiary on all those investments. Either solely, you can be joint owner and it just makes it your legal right to have access to that money as well. And another statistic that we’ve thrown out there a lot, but again, I’m going to say it. Among Americans 65 and older, almost twice as many women as men are living with financial hardship.

68% of all the elderly poor are women. And that’s a statistic from socialsecurity.gov. Again, we just live longer number one, and number two, there’s a whole array of reasons why our Social Security Income isn’t as high. Just need to really watch what’s going on with your own financial awareness.

Among Americans 65 and older, almost twice as many women as men are living with financial hardship. Click To Tweet

Yeah, I mean, it really does put an exclamation point on the reason to do it. It’s not demeaning or being disrespectful to anyone. It’s just bringing to light the necessity to be able to not let yourself end up in that position. Is that a fair statement?

Absolutely. And we met with some great couples this week. I just cannot tell you how much we love what we do. And these couple’s been married, they were married for over, I’m going to say almost 50 years now.

Wow.

Just a great couple. They were in their 80s and we enjoyed just meeting with them. And it was fun as we learned stuff from people who come in that sometimes become clients, sometimes don’t, but we learned stuff from them as well. And he was so happy that she decided to come in and do the review appointment with us and she said, “I don’t really know anything.” And she knew a heck of a lot more than she thought she didn’t. She has some pretty good questions.

If you do nothing else, but prepare and answer the questions in the documents that you provide for a potential appointment.

Right, exactly.

You will just by process of doing that start to fill in some of these blanks, start to get an understanding.

Right.

 

Yes, I think so. Right?

For sure. And people say that all the time. They say “Boy, it was a homework assignment.” For some people, they have everything right away. And other people it takes them a while to get together but they’re very thankful that they at least went through that process so that then now they know how many IRA’s they have. Now they know where their savings accounts are. So check us out Thrive Financial Services, on our website, and you’ll get some great information from that as well.

Really good stuff from Karen Bezar today. We will now talk to David for the final segment of that day.

Retirement can be like a game of chess. Let us help you out with your roadmap!

Yeah, thank you. And just a quick add in there for those that are going to attend the workshop in Jersey, you’re going to get to meet Sherri, who is one of our phenomenal advisors.

Yeah, we’ve had her on the program.

Yeah, she’s fantastic.

She’s really good, she’s fantastic.

People relate to her very well. She keeps people very captivated in her presentation, and she delivers a lot of great information. So I think those are going Cherry Hill or into a really good presentation. So you’ll see that and the rest of our team from Jersey as well. So I’m going to talk a little bit about this topic of long -term health care. And it’s a topic that I think people know about it to some degree. Statistically a lot of people that the industry as a whole is dramatically contracting. 70,000 less insurance policies have been issued last year as compared to five years ago on average. So what that tells us is there’s some things happening with long term care, even though it’s a really important topic. It’s something that is certainly possible that people are going to need in retirement, maybe not probable, but certainly possible and you have to kind of plan for it. Because one of the consequences of not taking advanced planning is it can wipe out your assets depending on how severe the need for those long-term care costs are.

We’ve experienced just the top of my mind, one of the worst conditions that you can contract is Alzheimer’s. And what is normally but typical stay in a nursing care confinement type setup is usually about three years. And here in southeastern Pennsylvania, the average cost per year is about $100,000.

Yeah, it’s a big number.

So if it’s a three year stay, add $100,000. I mean, there’s $300,000 of course, if you don’t have long-term care insurance will subsidize that. So you just read a statistic earlier how small people’s retirement plans typically aren’t all those that don’t even have company sponsored plans. Now, what we typically see, people who come out to our workshops, who come out to visit with us for our Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review, typically and this is not prejudice, we’d love to sit down with anybody, but we typically see people somewhere around $1,000,000 to about $3,000,000. Those are the, I’d say kind of the prototypical people who come in. Now we have certainly seen people with very, very little assets and we have seen folks with substantially more assets. But I would say that sweet spot, good cross section is somewhere between that million and $3,000,000. And with that group of people, we tend to see only about 30% of those folks actually already have long-term care insurance built into their financial plan.

So, for families that don’t have that with a typical stay of $300,000 a cost. I mean, if you’ve got a million dollars, and you have to allocate that $300,000 right there, that’s a pretty substantial-

A million dollars is going to go pretty quickly.

Yeah, right? If you don’t have the insurance, its assets and then maybe even real estate, right? So, we’ve seen that and those are the things that really steal that confidence level that people might have in retirement because they’ve built up a nice nest egg. So let me read you a little bit. According to research from Genworth, which is the largest issuer of long-term care insurance in the United States, they came up with a couple of things. And one of the things they’re saying is that Americans are both entering caregiver roles and requiring care at younger ages as compared to the past decade. So even though people are living longer, it’s doing two things. One is it’s putting maybe a younger generation into a caregiver role much earlier than anticipated, and people who are in need of that insurance coverage are actually having it happen earlier.

Now typically what we illustrate when somebody comes in for a review is we usually show it happening in their 80’s. Right? Which is where I think most of us kind of consider, maybe that’s when it would happen, the need for that. But what statistically we’re seeing it’s happening earlier and earlier, even into the early 70s. Bret talked about his mom, cancer survivor. After one year she was 70. My mom had a massive heart attack at 76 years old. Thank God it worked out well for both of them. But it could have been the opposite, right? Where now they’re in a need where Karen and I and Bret become caregivers, and then secondarily, it happened to them at a much earlier age than actually anticipated. So that’s why this topic is really important. So statistically, nearly half of family caregivers now are also men, which I found that very surprising, right? So that’s what Genworth is saying.

The average age of a family caregiver is 47 years old, down from 53 years old in 2010. 57% of family members who require care are 65 or older. That’s down from 80% in 2010. One in five long-term care recipient needs help as a result of an accident, rather than an illness, that’s nearly twice the number it used to be back in 2010. And US caregivers provide an average of 21 hours of assistance per week for a duration of the three years that I talked about. Now, I mentioned Alzheimer’s. We had a client who after nine years of spending in a long-term care facility at $100,000 a year because Alzheimer’s tends to be a lingering condition. And if you have to, you want to really take care of your loved one, and you happen to have the assets you have to spend and Bret, correct me if I’m wrong, but I think you have to spend down your assets to $2,000 before Medicaid.

That’s right.

Would actually kick in and help out at that point. So when you have some wealth, a million or plus, you’re going to be spending those assets before any assistance is going to come into play. If you don’t have long-term care insurance in place. Now, here’s where the problem is. Started the press here, but that’s kind of what is going on out there.

This is the deep end of the pool for everyone.

And it’s something that easily gets overlooked by many, many people that we visit with. And it’s kind of because of the next couple things we’re going to talk about. Genworth, which is the largest out there just received approval from 22 state insurance regulators to increase the cost of their insurance products by 58%. Not 10%, not 15, not 20, a 58% increase to the premium cost to the consumer. Now, that’s one of the main reasons why people don’t have it. And if they do have it, can’t keep it, because it becomes cost prohibitive. Interestingly enough, MassMutual, another big carrier out there, just got approval for a 71% increase in the health care costs. So, we’ve got a problem.

Oh, my goodness. That’s a staggering number.

It’s nuts.

Now they think it’s very justifiable, and it is to a degree, because health care costs are going up, people are getting it earlier, the length of time is lengthening. So all of these costs have to be covered somewhere. And what I would tell you and what our team here at Thrive talks about is it’s a broken industry. It’s just a broken product. And you have to look for other solutions to make it work and that’s what we want to talk about. So if you’re planning to live to a ripe old age, you got to do yourself and your family and friends a huge favor. You have to find resources to help you remain independent, as long as possible. There’s a wide variety of options and all price ranges and it’s never too early to consider a plan that’s right for your situation.

So if people would like help exploring these options, I’d encourage them to give us a call at 800-516-5861. And we can start to explore those things. Things like there are now hybrid solutions out there that don’t just rely on specific long-term care insurance. They are bundled into other types of insurance products as an add on, so that it now becomes like a Swiss Army knife. One of the problems with long-term care is if you die the way you want to die, which is in your sleep peacefully, you paid all this money and you never derive any benefit. If that long-term care feature is added into some other type of an insurance or annuity solution, you’re going to definitely derive some benefit from that. So it’s important to do that. There’s also Continuing Care Retirement Community. Planning for that, we’ve got an area of specialty, helping people figure out whether or not that’s a great solution for them as well. So again, 800-516-5861 these are topics that we bring up during the Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review, and we feel they’re critical to address.

Thank you, a lot, for that unique insight of a topic that not many people and readers probably knew about. That will do it for this week’s discussion. Thank you especially to Karen for her insight into how women can better navigate retirement, and not have to rely solely on their spouse or partner for their own

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