Jul 15

Dave Ramsey helps so many people but he is way off on when to buy LTC coverage

156x195-dave-ramseyDave Ramsey is still telling people to wait until they are 60 to buy long term care insurance. It’s embarrassing that he is saying nursing homes cost $50,000 when they really cost $75,000 and much higher in certain parts of the country like New York and parts of California. And still to be talking about just nursing homes after all these years when most people are NEVER in a nursing home. 75% of the care is at home and about 10% is in assisted living facilities. Less than 15% of care is in a nursing home. (Health Affairs, Jan 2010)

What’s really interesting to me, however, is that the report I gave him along with my new book back in March said a couple waiting til 60 would have to pay about $8000 when they could have gotten it at 50 for about $3500. And $8000 is the premium reported by the couple in their 60s in this story. If Dave could just grasp that telling people to wait until their 60s can not only price them out of the market, it can make them uninsurable so that no amount of money will buy it for them. Maybe someone could ask him “Dave, how many people do you know who have had a stroke in their 50s?” The ultimate result of what Dave Ramsey is doing by telling people to wait until age 60 to buy LTC insurance means we, the taxpayer, have to pay for more people on Medicaid because they listened to him and didn’t plan early enough. Sadly, the 60 year olds who try and fail to get LTC insurance are very likely to lose the financial peace for which they turned to him to start with because long-term care is the most common reason people outlive their savings. Feel free to use the info from my report with anyone.


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  1. Janet Hanne

    My husband and I have a policy with Met-Life and it too has had changes with price increased. It has dropped offering polices and only administers to current policies. They have twice now raised the prices significantly and the last offer we dropped the monthly premium by reducing the care to a three year term, as they find that to be the expected life term spent in a nursing facility. We took this policy out at the age of 62 and are currently 72 and 75. Still like having the option of living at home and having care given there instead of a nursing home, but that is something one never knows the care they will need in the future. It is best to plan for it than to leave it to chance! How stable do you feel the Met-Life plans are now that they do not offer new policy enrollment?

    1. Phyllis Shelton

      I think MetLife will take care of you and hopefully the worst of the rate increases are behind us. Most people are never in a nursing home if that brings you comfort, and that’s why it’s great that your MetLife policies will pay for home care, adult day care and those nice assisted living facilities that we see being built everywhere. Couple can stay together there and they don’t charge much for the second person. Yet they look nothing like nursing homes. So I hope you and your husband can stay home the entire time but if that doesn’t work out, the assisted living facility is a nice landing spot.

  2. Tom DeAngelo

    LTC insurance still leaves me shaking my head even though I have had it for 8 years since the age of 60.
    In one year John Handcock Ins raised the price from 2,100 to 4100. WHERE DOES THIS STOP? Is my major question. I am ready to ditch it, but …sometimes your inner voice says something.
    There was No explanation….and little to no guidance.

    This is a TRUE quandry for me.

    Comments from those who have experienced dropping his/ her LTC are appreciated.

    1. Phyllis Shelton

      Please do not cancel your John Hancock policy Tom. Let’s look at a worse case scenario. Compare the total amount of premium you will have paid in 20 years when you are 88 years old to the benefits you will have at age 88 and see if that makes you feel better. There are options to reduce your premium, however. You should have received a letter with the rate increase suggesting some ways to do that. If you would like my help to evaluate the best action for your situation, just email Lawrence@ltcconsultants.com to set up a call with me. No charge. No obligation.

    2. Ben Hatch

      Hi Tom,

      I would reach out to your local Nationwide Agent to find out about the LTC product they have to offer. The premiums stay fixed and will not go up on you.

      Plus, the product is not a reimbursement plan like John Hancock’s is. Nationwide’s LTC plan is indemnity style which means the company send the payment directly to you when you qualify.

      At least have the agent review your hancock policy. They could have a solution.

      1. Phyllis Shelton

        Ben has a point. Nationwide has two types of policies that pay for LTC and both pay cash benefits to you. It may be tough to duplicate the John Hancock benefits but it’s worth checking out. Cash often has more purchasing power than a reimbursement benefit because you can hire whomever you want as a caregiver rather than going through an agency.

  3. Phyllis Shelton

    Well, there’s a lot to be said for debt reduction and I can’t comment on the other products he talks about. I can only reiterate that he should make it very clear that people need to consider long-term care insurance long before age 60.

  4. Scott

    Whenever someone is an expert in their field, they will have issues with Dave Ramsey. Its really pathetic that his listeners don’t look beyond him for advice. He is really a debt reduction specialist that fakes being a financial expert- Selling products to people all along the way.

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