Tuesday, February 21, 2012

How To Pay Less For Long-Term Care Insurance

You can pay $700 annually for a quality long-term care insurance policy. You can also pay $7,000 a year. A significant number of individuals today pay between $15 and $20 a week for this protection. That's a highly affordable way to protect $150,000 to $250,000 of future care. Some 200,000 new LTC insurance buyers who purchased coverage over the past year were studied by the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance, the national trade organization. Among buyers under age 61, over one-fourth(27.8%) paid less than $999 per year.

Here are 5 tips that can help individuals significantly reduce the cost of insurance coverage:

1. Leverage Your Good Health: Insurers require that you meet certain health qualifications to obtain coverage. Discounts are provided to those in good health and 62% of applicants between ages 40-49 qualified. The percentage drops to 46% for ages 50-59 and only 38% for ages 60-69.

2. Mind Your Birthday: Rates for this insurance are age-based and priced to remain level. Costs will increase each year you wait to apply, generally about 8% annually for each year you delay.

3. Right-Size Your Coverage: Some long-term care insurance is always better than none. Factor in other sources of income such as Social Security, pension and 401K plans that can pay costs.

4. Buy As A Couple: Most insurers offer significant discounts when a couple buys coverage together. As high as 30%. Buying as a couple will also allow you to add cost-saving options like Shared Care that allows two spouses to share a common benefit period.

5. Compare Coverage: Each insurer establishes it's own rates, health standards and available discounts. As a result, virtually equal protection from two highly-rated insurers can vary by between 30 and 80 percent.