What comes to mind when you think of your retirement?  Is it more quality time with your children and grandchildren, picking up hobbies or personal pursuits? Perhaps it’s owning a beach cottage or mountain cabin or embarking on some extended travel. Before you start putting money aside for that RV, be sure to incorporate caregiving as a part of your post-retirement years.                                                                                                              A senior couple financially planning for their retirement.

According AARP, it turns out that approximately 80 percent of older adults have at least one chronic disease and 77 percent have at least two. At some point in the progression of these illnesses, these people will need caregiving assistance. On top of this, many older adults are caregiving for a spouse or adult child with an illness, disability or special needs. So, the majority of us will both need care and provide care in our 60s and beyond.

The stark reality is that illness and aging are expensive. Long-term care can easily cost anywhere from $50,000 to over $100,000 per year. Home health aides cost an average of $25-$28 an hour. Hospital bills can pile up quickly after a major medical event. It’s a bad bet to take a “wait and see” approach to whether you or your caregivers will have enough assets to cover your needs. Instead, incorporate caregiving-supportive tools into your longevity planning. Run the numbers through retirement and benefits calculators and work with advisers to guide you on the different options available. This may include:

Saving and budgeting

Calculate the amount of money you expect to need in retirement, in times of good and poor health — and budget for both. Save or earmark certain assets specifically for caregiving needs. At some point, you may wish to simplify your finances to meet this goal. The older you are, the more likely you’ll rely on both paid and unpaid caregivers for assistance.

Purchasing insurance or annuities

These policies can be significant financial contributors if you are facing extraordinary medical needs. Options like this may not be available to you after diagnosis of a chronic disease. Don’t wait for the ship to sail if you can comfortably afford premiums for insurance or annuities that will offset the costs of long-term care or disability. These policies, however, do not account for the quality of care or the process of finding that care when you need it.

Fellowship Freedom Plans

Fellowship Freedom Plans combine the financial protection of long-term care insurance with comprehensive care coordination, providing you with a safety net of services typically available only through a traditional residential Life Plan Community (CCRC). You not only have the assurance that a full continuum of care will be available if you need it, but you also have the peace of mind knowing that our organization, Fellowship Senior Living, will bring that care to you. Additionally, your care manager is provided as a resource to you as part of your membership in the Fellowship Freedom Plans program.  Your care manager is your health advocate from day 1 with the goal to help you maintain your health and independence in successfully aging in place in your own home. This personal connection provides great assurance that if you should need care, your care is managed and coordinated on your behalf, and if that care is needed outside of New Jersey, we can manage and coordinate that care anywhere in the United States through our portability option.

Resources to help you plan                                                                                            financial navigation

RegentAtlanticJim Ciprich, Partner & Wealth Advisor and Melissa Weisz, Wealth Advisor are  our trusted partners here at Fellowship Senior Living.  Jim and Melissa continue to be a resource to our current and future Fellowship Freedom Plan members for all financial planning needs and services.

Fellowship Freedom PlansJennifer Kohan, Director of Membership Development, is available to help you explore the options Freedom Plans offers. Jennifer can explain, in detail, the various membership levels, additional perks of being a member, and why Fellowship Freedom Plans is your most comprehensive choice in long-term planning.