What could this be about? Cashing in my old gold jewelry, buying gold coins or perhaps preparing for retirement, ding, ding, ding–it is preparing for retirement Golden Girls style.
Now this is not really retirement we are talking about, we’re talking about avoiding the nursing home circuit when we are too old to live alone. This is something we have to plan for, people. If you have been in a nursing home you know this is not the place you want to be. But as you get older and we all want to live to be a ripe old age and we want to be in our right mind and still be able to get around. So if you are in good health and still know what day it is, chances are you can live where you want as long as you can pay for it. Yes paying for it is the issue.
I have been checking out the nursing home situation and we are talking big bucks, no whammies. I looked at one that is close to my home and for a teeny tiny room that they called an efficiency it was $88 a day, now add that up, it comes to $2,640 a month. If you want your space just a teeny bit bigger it is $111 a day. You get meals, laundry and health care. If you ever wondered why so many people put their relatives in the dining room? That is all they can afford.
Yes, now is the time for you to laugh out loud. If you want to put your loved one somewhere nice it is going to cost you. If you think about it, you would be better to build a big house with a suite for your relative and hire a nurse or care taker.
I have a lot of girlfriends who aren’t married and don’t have any children. Who is going to take care of us? Even the people with children can’t always count on them to be around in their golden years. So why not get a big ranch house like the Golden Girls, a house big enough to allow each person to have their own room? We would hire someone to cut the grass, shovel snow and sometimes prepare meals. We would not have to eat nursing home food and we could watch out for each other. Or if that doesn’t work, perhaps we could all live in the same building on the same floor, that would be great fun, like a big dorm and we could each have our own apartments.
Buying long-term care insurance is something to be considered. If you are over 55, now is the time to start looking. Some policies allow you to stay in your home. Again, just like anything that is worth anything, this is not cheap. Do your homework and go with an insurance company that has been around for a long time.
Did you know that 78 million baby boomers turned 65 in 2011? And did you know that paying for your care as you age is one of the biggest drains on your wealth? It is time to prepare for your golden age.
(Email the columnist at firstname.lastname@example.org)