LOOKING DOWN THE ROAD
Three questions women need to answer about retirement
Question No. 1
Do I have enough money to last my lifetime? Numbers show that half of women 65 and older are single. And because women on average live longer than men, running out of money is a higher risk. There are financial strategies that provide a guaranteed fixed income, often combined with growth strategies in the market to offset volatility in a portfolio.
Having an income plan is critical. How much will you need to meet current or projected expenses? If there’s a shortfall, how can you reduce expenses or make up the difference? You may need to significantly downscale your lifestyle or continue to work longer.
Question No. 2
How will I pay for home health or long-term care if I need it? Some 60 percent of us 65+ will need some care; either at home or a facility at a cost of $3,000 to $9,000 or more per month. The simple math is that women need this care more often.
Individual long-term care policies provide a specific benefit per day for a specified number of years and can be used for home health, assisted living or skilled nursing care. Life insurance policies also offer riders to cover care. The advantage of the combined products is that if you don’t use it for care, you can have the death benefit to pass to your heirs tax-free. Any of the LTC or life policies do require you to pass a medical exam and there are some restrictions. However, annuity programs offer riders to provide additional income for chronic care regardless of health.
Question No. 3
What will I leave my children? While some clients tell me their children are doing very well financially and are not concerned with leaving them anything, most want to bequeath something to help their families. For someone who has no health issues, permanent or universal life policies are a good option. However, if you are not insurable due to health conditions, there are fixed-income products that have minimum guarantees but can grow the death benefit substantially as the market grows.
Both life and fixed-income products offer a variety of great options to make sure your family is covered. But don’t forget it’s also very important to make sure you have an updated Florida will so that your wealth will be distributed the way you intended.
If you have questions about your retirement or other financial issues, please email them to me at mar[email protected]ingtheinvestor.com.
All written content is for information purposes only. It is not intended to provide tax or legal advice or provide the basis for any financial decisions. All information and ideas should be discussed in detail with your individual advisor or qualified professional before making any financial decisions.
Marsha McDonald is a representative with Advantage Retirement Group in Fort Myers and Naples.