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Old 03-03-2015, 12:18 AM
 
Location: Florida Gulf Coast
4,408 posts, read 5,931,325 times
Reputation: 7121

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I certainly didn't plan well. 401k plans became available when I was in my 30's, but I wasn't making much and certainly wasn't thinking of retirement, so for years I put in the bare minimum. It wasn't until my 50's when I was making decent money that I started maxing out and putting do in the extra contribution as well. I was on my way to what I thought would be a decent retirement fund, until the market collapsed and set me back quite a bit.

Anyway, about LTC: I am single and don't have it. I have this fear of being ripped off by the insurance company -- e.g., I assume they decide if you qualify for a claim, and do they use the same criteria (activities of daily living) as Medicare does? I know when my Mom was pretty feeble and frail, the social worker still said she wouldn't qualify for nursing home coverage because in their view, she was still able to handle some of the ADLs herself. So my point being, you have to be seriously incapacitated for nursing home coverage. And if the insurance company doesn't think you're incapacitated enough, they reject your claim and who's going to wage that battle? I think an assisted-living scenario is much more likely for most of us, and I don't think most of the LTC plans cover assisted-living, do they? I have asked this before but have never gotten any concrete examples of what exactly these plans pay for, how much they pay and for how long, and when coverage kicks in.
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Old 03-03-2015, 12:52 AM
 
Location: Las Vegas
13,890 posts, read 25,340,170 times
Reputation: 26388
I can tell you what happened to SO's cousin. He has to watch every penny but it's NOT an awful life. He doesn't get to do all the things he would like to do but he was never wealthy in his working years either so no change there! He never was able to jet off to Paris so it's not like he misses it. In a lot of ways I'm worse off because I know what I am missing!

He gets 1 K per month in pension and Social Security. And $180 something in SNAP. He has a great Medicare plan and the state(Medicaid) picks up the tab for his premium every month so his healthcare is free. His housing will be low income for disabled seniors and the rent is a percentage of his income. He will probably end up paying around $200 per month for rent and utilities. His cellphone is free from SNAP. He doesn't drive or own a car so he has a senior disabled bus pass and it's $2 per ride or $2 for unlimited rides in a 24 hour period.

Ideally he will live in a walkable location where he can meet most of his needs on foot. Other than the knee problem he is in pretty good shape and it's good for him to be active. And he will be able to afford cable for entertainment, if it's not included in his rent, and there's always the computer and the library. He is a likable guy and I imagine he will make a lot of friends here.

As time goes on if he needs skilled nursing care...he gets to go into one of the same nursing homes we would. And he doesn't have to worry about paying because he has nothing. Today he is much better off in Las Vegas than he was in NYC. He pretty much has 1k a month for whatever and food. Not awful for a single guy with no responsibilities.
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Old 03-03-2015, 02:56 AM
 
71,735 posts, read 71,829,507 times
Reputation: 49289
Quote:
Originally Posted by Avalon08 View Post
I certainly didn't plan well. 401k plans became available when I was in my 30's, but I wasn't making much and certainly wasn't thinking of retirement, so for years I put in the bare minimum. It wasn't until my 50's when I was making decent money that I started maxing out and putting do in the extra contribution as well. I was on my way to what I thought would be a decent retirement fund, until the market collapsed and set me back quite a bit.

Anyway, about LTC: I am single and don't have it. I have this fear of being ripped off by the insurance company -- e.g., I assume they decide if you qualify for a claim, and do they use the same criteria (activities of daily living) as Medicare does? I know when my Mom was pretty feeble and frail, the social worker still said she wouldn't qualify for nursing home coverage because in their view, she was still able to handle some of the ADLs herself. So my point being, you have to be seriously incapacitated for nursing home coverage. And if the insurance company doesn't think you're incapacitated enough, they reject your claim and who's going to wage that battle? I think an assisted-living scenario is much more likely for most of us, and I don't think most of the LTC plans cover assisted-living, do they? I have asked this before but have never gotten any concrete examples of what exactly these plans pay for, how much they pay and for how long, and when coverage kicks in.
our plan has simple criteria for getting benefits and it is not up to the insurer. your doctor calls the shots as far as meeting the criteria.

i really want the plan for in home or assisted living care. there is a good chance that is where our policy will be used.

in any case that is one huge variable behind us.

there are very good reasons other than financial that we wanted the plan

as typically happens when parents need care one sibling always steps up and the rest don't . we had the happen in my own family.

that sibling usually ends up resenting the others that don't help as much and families can be busted up over it..

but even if that isn't the case if a spouse is involved that is a time bomb waiting to happen .

once the spouse starts with why are you helping and no one else is things can turn nasty in a family all to quick. had that with my EX wife when i helped my father in a home and family members didn't. all i heard was why are we sending money over and over. it made it a constant fight source for us and drived a wedge between family members.

many times the family member that helps with time ends up having a career that suffers or lost income as well making it difficult for them as well as very trying at times.

anyone who has tried to lift or carry 200lbs of flacid flesh knows the deal , it can be nothing like helping someone who has the ability to stand and needs assistance.

in the end we found the best solution was the plan. our only regret was that we took it so late and now it is so expensive as well as has an extra charge tacked on because now i turned diabetic.

even though my numbers are good with no medication every blood test i took prior is stored in a data base and they saw the last 5 tests were higher than normal.
they are sooooooooo strict.

they came to the house and gave us exams that included full blood work up , urine , drug testing, aids testing and much to our surprise a bunch of memory tests.


i didn't mind the physical as much as i feared the memory tests since i can't remember crap anymore short term.

the surprise was that that kind of forgetting is normal and the tests point out other areas of difficulty so we both passed...

if we did it years ago when we wanted the premiums would have been far lower and affordable.

Last edited by mathjak107; 03-03-2015 at 03:53 AM..
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Old 03-03-2015, 04:10 AM
 
71,735 posts, read 71,829,507 times
Reputation: 49289
Quote:
Originally Posted by AZDesertBrat View Post
I agree. I was trying to find posts that I thought might show some "nastiness" but didn't find any. This has been a really enlightening and good thread.
i didn't see nastiness either.

what i do see is there are folks who for some reason are compelled to take informational posts that don't apply to them or others and they just have to post how it doesn't apply to them or others without a thought that THERE ARE MANY IT DOES APPLY TO..

as if that changes the information and it should not be posted for those it applys to.

i don't think you can find one suggestive post in any forum without someone jumping in and going that can't BE true because it does not apply to me .

you shouldn't be discussing this or that as options because they themselves have limited income..

you can bet dollars to donuts it will happen every time..

why not just bypass what does not apply without going out of their way to mention how SOMETHING IS USELESS INFO BECAUSE IT DOES NOT APPLY TO THEM.

Last edited by mathjak107; 03-03-2015 at 05:15 AM..
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Old 03-03-2015, 04:45 AM
 
71,735 posts, read 71,829,507 times
Reputation: 49289
perfect example is this is a thread about what if you can't afford to retire.

many folks are not aware that working until 70 has so many benefits that make the impossible very possible.

so what happens? you list the benefits and get a bunch of responses like not everyone can work to 70 or I lost my job and can't find another or what if I die at 71.

the world is full of exceptions and always will be but that does not change the facts . it just means for whatever reason it isn't something you can or need to do.

the fact is for millions that will be the plan and the only plan and by knowing the benefits that come from working longer suddenly there is a light at the end of the tunnel and it isn't the train .

folks need to understand that just because something does not work for them or apply to them there are loads of people things discussed do apply to. it isn't slighting anyone or talking down to them because they do not have the funds or ability to do certain things. it just doesn't apply to them.

Last edited by mathjak107; 03-03-2015 at 05:17 AM..
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Old 03-03-2015, 05:22 AM
 
Location: Central Maine
2,867 posts, read 2,989,232 times
Reputation: 3983
We "hear" from them but we ignore them. They are the older people you see working minimum wage or regular jobs into their 50s and 60s. Some beyond. No fault to them. They saved and received a pension, a lot of them. But because they are still too young to collect a pension or social security, or they have a pension but it is geared to an economy that existed decades ago and did not rise with inflation, they have to continue to work. And a with good percentage it is not necessarily because they are living above their means but that the COL has risen so much and the rules changed so much that their pension/savings/social security no longer satisfies even having the basics. I am sure that with a lot, maybe not all, of seniors if they could have foreseen the changes that occurred in our country over the last 3 or 4 decades they would have diligently saved and prepared a lot more for retirement.
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Old 03-03-2015, 06:48 AM
 
Location: St. George, Utah
756 posts, read 884,718 times
Reputation: 1971
Quote:
Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
perfect example is this is a thread about what if you can't afford to retire.

many folks are not aware that working until 70 has so many benefits that make the impossible very possible.

so what happens? you list the benefits and get a bunch of responses like not everyone can work to 70 or I lost my job and can't find another or what if I die at 71.

the world is full of exceptions and always will be but that does not change the facts . it just means for whatever reason it isn't something you can or need to do.

the fact is for millions that will be the plan and the only plan and by knowing the benefits that come from working longer suddenly there is a light at the end of the tunnel and it isn't the train .

folks need to understand that just because something does not work for them or apply to them there are loads of people things discussed do apply to. it isn't slighting anyone or talking down to them because they do not have the funds or ability to do certain things. it just doesn't apply to them.
See, this is one of the things I learned on this very thread, and we are amongst the so-called "comfortably retired"(-to-be) who don't need any advice/information. I had NO IDEA the difference in payment between 62 and 70 would be that large until mathjak kindly took the time to clearly line it out for me, for anyone interested. For those for whom it doesn't apply for one reason or another, it's still good information to have. One should be making informed decisions, not just bumbling through.

Or at least that's how I try to approach things. I really appreciate the information, and probably would never have taken the time to figure it out for myself. SSA info is like one big math test to me, and I'm an English Major (yes, haha, would you like fries with that?! I know....) Now I have this info and will share with MrMontanama, and tuck it away. It will change before we arrive at 70, but I understand it more clearly now.

Not the first time mathjak has presented such info in a clear, concise manner! Thx mathjak.

As for what happens to those who don't have enough to retire, I agree that a large part of this idea is A) We have all come up with this image of the active older couple smiling into the horizon aboard a sailboat somewhere--of travel abroad and condos at the beach. And B) We're all buying at Dell Webb so we can become bike racers. This is what retirement is. The reality for most of us in any situation will probably be downsizing to a manageable home both in size and affordability, chasing our kids and grandkids around for a crumb of attention, and tolerating the gradual decline of our physical abilities. The rest is just dressing.

So for those with fewer resources, yes it probably involves seeking out the services available to the elderly in each individual's community, and taking advantage of the resources that best serve each. In our town there is meals on wheels, subsidized housing/vouchers (quite a process to get though), food pantry, and senior center with free transportation and daily activities. Of course the library and thrift shops. (We also seem to be the garage-sale capital of the world, and it's a full-time hobby for a lot of seniors around here, some of whom resell what they find on ebay.) All in all not a terrible prospect if one has the gumption to seek out resources. In the end, LTC insurance or no, I think we all end up in roughly the same place.

FWIW, I know the circumstances of 2 of the greeters at our Wal-mart, and they are there for the social aspect and a little extra spending cash for their travel habits. Not sure I understand all the implications that it's such a terrible job--in our town Wal-mart is one of the social centers, lol, and the greeters are always chatting with friends and generally seem to be enjoying themselves, whether they NEED to be there or not.
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Old 03-03-2015, 06:55 AM
 
Location: Verde Valley AZ
8,623 posts, read 9,692,127 times
Reputation: 11005
Quote:
Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
i didn't see nastiness either.

what i do see is there are folks who for some reason are compelled to take informational posts that don't apply to them or others and they just have to post how it doesn't apply to them or others without a thought that THERE ARE MANY IT DOES APPLY TO..

as if that changes the information and it should not be posted for those it applys to.

i don't think you can find one suggestive post in any forum without someone jumping in and going that can't BE true because it does not apply to me .

you shouldn't be discussing this or that as options because they themselves have limited income..

you can bet dollars to donuts it will happen every time..

why not just bypass what does not apply without going out of their way to mention how SOMETHING IS USELESS INFO BECAUSE IT DOES NOT APPLY TO THEM.
This is a lot why I don't post as much as I could here. So many things simply don't apply to me, personally, but I would never jump in and tell someone else they are "wrong" or whatever.

Reading what you wrote in your prior post about a person's kids pitching in to help...or not...is so true. I guess, as long as one of them is 'doing the job' the rest just don't bother. I know, from my own experience with my mom and siblings, that this is very true. In my case it was me who did all the caretaking, took her shopping, making sure she made her doctor appointments, etc. etc. and none of the others even called to see how she was doing, if she needed anything or if they could DO anything. I didn't resent them but I sure wondered why. Mom had a gazillion excuses for them but I didn't. They were simply neglectful, period.
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Old 03-03-2015, 06:57 AM
 
Location: Jamestown, NY
7,841 posts, read 7,336,499 times
Reputation: 13779
[quote=DauntlessDan;38665533]We "hear" from them but we ignore them. They are the older people you see working minimum wage or regular jobs into their 50s and 60s. Some beyond. No fault to them. They saved and received a pension, a lot of them. But because they are still too young to collect a pension or social security, or they have a pension but it is geared to an economy that existed decades ago and did not rise with inflation, they have to continue to work. And a with good percentage it is not necessarily because they are living above their means but that the COL has risen so much and the rules changed so much that their pension/savings/social security no longer satisfies even having the basics. I am sure that with a lot, maybe not all, of seniors if they could have foreseen the changes that occurred in our country over the last 3 or 4 decades they would have diligently saved and prepared a lot more for retirement.[/quote]

Excellent points!
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Old 03-03-2015, 07:09 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,751,136 times
Reputation: 32309
Default Here is the answer:

Quote:
Originally Posted by yellowsnow View Post
I can tell you what happened to SO's cousin. He has to watch every penny but it's NOT an awful life. He doesn't get to do all the things he would like to do but he was never wealthy in his working years either so no change there! He never was able to jet off to Paris so it's not like he misses it. In a lot of ways I'm worse off because I know what I am missing!

He gets 1 K per month in pension and Social Security. And $180 something in SNAP. He has a great Medicare plan and the state(Medicaid) picks up the tab for his premium every month so his healthcare is free. His housing will be low income for disabled seniors and the rent is a percentage of his income. He will probably end up paying around $200 per month for rent and utilities. His cellphone is free from SNAP. He doesn't drive or own a car so he has a senior disabled bus pass and it's $2 per ride or $2 for unlimited rides in a 24 hour period.

Ideally he will live in a walkable location where he can meet most of his needs on foot. Other than the knee problem he is in pretty good shape and it's good for him to be active. And he will be able to afford cable for entertainment, if it's not included in his rent, and there's always the computer and the library. He is a likable guy and I imagine he will make a lot of friends here.

As time goes on if he needs skilled nursing care...he gets to go into one of the same nursing homes we would. And he doesn't have to worry about paying because he has nothing. Today he is much better off in Las Vegas than he was in NYC. He pretty much has 1k a month for whatever and food. Not awful for a single guy with no responsibilities.
Your post is the answer to what will happen to people who don't have enough money to retire, and it has the great merit of being factually based on an actual case, as opposed to some theoretical answer. The answer is that no one needs "enough" money to retire because the taxpayers will step up to the plate and everybody will be just fine. End of the handwringing, end of the agonizing.

I can see how wrong I was to be worried about my cousin.
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