Retirement has a lot of uncertainties. And among those uncertainties, perhaps, health care is the most challenging one. As healthcare costs become more expensive, the anxieties and worries of retirees also rise. According to a Financial Burden Survey conducted by GoBankingRates, healthcare costs is one of the major concerns of Americans beating insufficient income, retirement savings, and more others. With that very challenging picture of how healthcare might be during retirement, how can you shield yourself from possibly devastating retirement healthcare costs?
Now that you know what healthcare costs will be like in retirement, it is time to prepare and protect yourself. Here are some suggestions that can help you:
It is never too early to learn and understand Medicare. Don’t be among those confused Americans when it comes to Medicare coverage. Knowing everything about Medicare coverage will help you avoid costly mistakes and shocking surprises later in retirement. Take advantage of the time you have to develop a Medicare strategy.
You may want to fill the coverage gap of Medicare with a Medicare Supplement plan commonly known as Medigap. Medicare only covers up to 80%, you’ll face the remaining 20% and have to pay it as out-of-pocket expenses. Don’t be fooled by the amount as it can get heavy overtime, especially if you are someone who often requires medical attention. You will be able to minimize that out-of-pocket expenses with Medigap. Make use of your time to get to know the top Medicare Supplement insurance companies to whom you should get quotes and compare policies.
One of the most common misconceptions is that Medicare covers everything, including long term care. The truth is, it does NOT cover long term care.
Most of us will need some form of long term care at any point in our lives, especially during the retirement period. Women, because of longevity will more likely need it more than men. Long term care, aside from the medical services you need from the hospital, is also staggeringly expensive. Protect yourself from another debilitating form of healthcare expenses, consider getting long term care insurance as early as possible.
You can save money here on a pre-tax basis and use it (in conjunction with high deductible health plans) to pay for qualified medical expenses and offset out-of-pocket costs.
Take care of your health and be healthy later. Leveraging to a healthier lifestyle is much cheaper than indulging yourself to unhealthy lifestyle and be very sick later in retirement. Of course, you don’t dream to spend your golden years worried and sick, right? So, be on preventive care for yourself.
It is like an emergency fund that is dedicated only to unwanted or unexpected healthcare needs. It will act as a buffer so you won’t have to tap on your retirement funds right away.