Thriving and Living Longer at Age 100+
You may have noticed running into more older people these days. If so you are not imagining it. More people than ever before are reaching the ripe old age of 100. The total number of Americans over the age of 100 is up by 44 percent since 2000 federal health officials reported Thursday (January 21, 2016).
The Census Bureau says the centenarian population has grown more than 65% nationwide over the past 3 decades.
The New York Times quoting a report issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said there were 72,197 centenarians in 2014, up from 50,281 in 2000.
These centenarians are living even longer. Death rates declined for all demographic groups of centenarians — white, black, Hispanic, female, male — in the six years ending in 2014, the report said.
Women, who typically live longer than men, accounted for the overwhelming majority of centenarians in 2014: more than 80 percent.
The US Census has already reported the 90+ age group was the fastest growing age demographic in the United States. As more American’s age and live longer than ever expected it presents a number of issues many people have not planned for including retirement funding and the costs of Long Term Health Care. Many people are not prepared to live long and deal with extended care issues.
The White House recently issued a report from the Conference on Aging which indicated that if you reach the age of 65 you have nearly a 70% chance of needing a Long Term Health Care service prior to death. The costs of this extended care is not paid for by Medicare or health insurance including Medicare Supplements. This places pressure on a person’s future retirement plan which not only has to last an increased lifespan but now must address the costs of unbudgeted Long Term Health Care.
The White House report indicates private options are available to address the costs of extended care. These options include Long Term Care Insurance, life insurance with LTC riders, reverse equity mortgages, and annuities with LTC riders. These products are available to help some people plan ahead to pay for their future care without losing their assets and becoming being dependent on Medicaid.
Experts suggest you start planning for 'long life' early in life. Contribute to your employer’s 401k plan and leave the money alone. Don’t be tempted to take the money out for other reasons … it is for your ‘golden years’ and you will need the money if you live to 100+.
The other planning tool is Long Term Care Insurance. Premiums are based on age and health when you get the plan. Planning early, well before retirement, allows you to get a very affordable plan.
Those ‘golden years’ can be much more golden with some advance planning. The good news is … we are living longer. The bad news is … we are living longer. Make your plan and put it in place sooner than later.