Planning ahead for long-term care is important because there is a good chance you will need some long-term care services if you live beyond the age of 65. About 70 percent of people over age 65 require some services, and the likelihood of needing care increases as you age.
Planning ahead is also important because the cost of long-term care services often exceeds what the average person can pay from income and other resources. By planning ahead, you may be able to save your assets and income for uses other than long-term care, including preserving the quality of life for your spouse or other loved ones. With planning, there is a greater likelihood of being able to leave an estate to your heirs, because you are less likely to use up your financial resources paying for care.
Additionally, for many people, one of the most important advantages of planning ahead is to ensure greater independence should you need care. Your choices for receiving care outside of a facility and being able to stay at home or receive services in the community for as long as possible are greater if you have planned ahead.
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