How financial advisors can help retirees get Medicare right

Posted by Emily Kubis on Wed, Sep 12, 2018 @ 09:09

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Four tips for financial advising clients

Healthcare costs in retirement are expensive —  Fidelity Benefits Consulting estimates a 65-year-old couple retiring this year will spend $275,000 on healthcare, not including long-term care expenses.

One of the reasons Medicare can be so costly is that there are 18 different options for retirees. With more choice comes more complexity, and consumers often don’t pick the right or most cost-effective strategy for their needs.

However, financial advisors can assist retirees in both planning ahead for healthcare costs in retirement as well as finding the right strategy. To learn more about this, click here to check out the webinar, “Medicare Open Enrollment: Top Four Ways Financial Advisors Can Help Clients Get Healthcare Right,” or read on for more.

Help clients with annual Medicare reviews

On top of the fact that there are 18 different Medicare strategies, the prescription drug plans for each option can change every year. This is why reminding clients to review their Medicare strategy in advance of the annual open enrollment period is a good practice. Clients may find that medications covered last year aren’t available under the same plan the following year.

Familiarize yourself with free healthcare tools

Tools like GoodRx.com and HealthcareBluebook.com can help consumers at any age determine fair prices for common medications and healthcare services.

Assist bridging the gap to Medicare

Clients who plan to retire before they are eligible for Medicare at age 65 will need to find coverage after losing their workplace plan. These clients can expect to pay anywhere between $500 and $2,000 per month for coverage, with options including a spouse’s employer plan, COBRA, employer retirement plans, Obamacare coverage, off-exchange coverage, and faith-based plans.

Maximize HSAs as retirement accounts

Many consumers use Health Savings Account as specialized checking accounts by paying for qualified medical expenses. However, these accounts can be maximized as an additional retirement vehicle. HSAs provide a triple tax advantage – capital gains, dividends and interest accumulate tax-free, contributions are tax-deductible, and qualified medical expenses are tax-free.

How are financial advisors being proactive about healthcare?

Financial advisors who offer additional layers of support around healthcare are able to provide a competitive differentiator, as well as give clients peace of mind about affording healthcare throughout retirement.

There are a spectrum of options financial advisors can take to help clients with healthcare. From nudging clients to conduct their own research, to using planning tools to estimate healthcare costs in retirement, to partnering with insurance salespeople or noncomissioned insurance advisors such as Bernard Health, more and more financial advisors are recognizing how material healthcare is to clients’ financial well-being.

To learn more, click below.

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Topics: Bernard Health, financial advisors, financial planner, retirement, medicare costs, healthcare costs, healthcare extension

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