No older adult wants to move into a nursing home if they have any other option. Remaining independent as long as possible is a near-universal goal for those in their golden years. You may not have planned for a stay in a nursing home when saving for retirement because you really hoped to avoid living in such a facility.
Being able to age in place or continue living in the home you have enjoyed for decades may seem like a better way to spend your retirement than living in a facility with many other older adults. You can stay close to those you love and decide for yourself when you eat or go to bed at night.
Of course, you have no way of knowing what will happen with your health or your family in the future. You may eventually need to move into a nursing home even if you would prefer not to. Long-term health care planning is important for those thinking about retirement, as paying for nursing home care isn’t easy.
Florida nursing homes are particularly expensive
Living in a nursing home will cost multiple times what living in your own residence would cost. You will pay thousands of dollars a month just to share a room in a nursing home with someone else. The average cost of a semi-private room in Florida is more than $900 higher than the national average cost. Residents in Florida paid $8,669 for semi-private rooms in 2020 on average.
You will either need to pay those costs out of pocket or qualify for Medicaid to cover those costs, as Medicare does not pay for nursing home expenses or even for a long stay at a rehabilitation facility.
You can plan now for possible needs later
The good news is that advanced planning can make nursing home expenses less of a concern as you age. Health care planning often involves changing the way that you hold your assets so that you can qualify for Medicaid if you need it and protect those same belongings from creditor claims in the future.
Going over your finances to determine if you can easily qualify for Medicaid or cover the cost of a nursing home today is an important first step in long-term health care planning.