Planning your estate naturally extends forward into your retirement years and the period leading up to your death. To be able to plan intelligently you have to proceed with some idea of how long you can logically expect to live. The fact is that medical science has steadily been making advances, and this has had a positive impact on longevity. In addition, we live in the information age so people are universally more aware of what to do and what not to do if they want to stay healthy as they are aging.
The statistics tell the tale in this regard; the senior citizen population is the fastest growing demographic block in the United States. People are routinely living into their late eighties and beyond, so you have to make plans with this kind of longevity in mind. Quite specifically, if you live this long you may well require nursing home care at some point in time, and the costs of such care are something to take into consideration.
Every year MetLife releases their findings concerning the costs of long-term care, and the rates that nursing homes charged in 2010 were considerably higher than those of 2009. The average national charge for a private room in a nursing home in 2010 was $229 per day, and this works out to $83,585 each year, which is an increase of 4.6% over ’09 averages. A semi-private room costs $205 a day on average in the U.S., an increase of 3.5% over the 2009 average of $198 a day.
In Missouri nursing home costs are quite a bit below the national average, but significant all the same. The average daily charge for a private room in a Missouri nursing home is $157, which is $57,305 per year. A semi-private room costs $140 a day on average, and this equates to over $51,000 each year.
Clearly, rising nursing home costs are a source of concern. Depending on your means it may take some very precise planning to prepare for this possible eventuality, and it is something that you may want to discuss with an estate planning attorney who is well versed in all of the nuances of elder law.