To indicate how much health issues prey on the mind of investors, the Spectrem study asked them to rate on a 0-to-100 scale their level of concern about a variety of topics, and the topic with the highest rating was “healthcare event that requires a much greater level of care than I presently have”. The rating was 58.43, followed by concern over a spouse’s health (57.15), paying for healthcare services (56.50) and the investor’s own health (55.86).
- An investor’s health: If the investor is still working and his or her family relies on his income, there needs to be protections against a loss of income due to illness. Is the investor protected through health insurance from his company, and if so, how extensive is that coverage?
- An elder family member’s health: Working investors likely have parents who are still alive, and their health must be on the minds of the investor. Can the investor cover the costs of extended health benefits for a father or mother who gets ill?
- Living arrangements: As people get older and the eventuality of age makes it more difficult to care for themselves, living arrangements can change. Is a retired investor planning to move in with the kids someday, or do they plan to stay in their home come hell or high water and pay to bring in expensive nursing care? Will an investor’s parent put up a fight when it is time to move into a care facility in part because the parent knows how expensive such a decision can be?
These matters, and others, can be made less critical if the investor is properly prepared financially to handle changes in health for themselves and family members. But it is more than creating a rainy day fund; it is complicated, and difficult for an investor to know what products or services best suits their needs.
That is where the advisor comes in. A knowledgeable advisor can point an investor to a program that suits their family situation and their financial situation. Such advice, when aimed at easing an investor’s concerns over the potential for a health crisis in their family, can be rewarded by a sense of loyalty one often feels towards someone who goes out of their way to assist.
However, having knowledge about healthcare costs, medical insurance coverages, and types of living arrangements requires study. Advisors and providers should have sources or experts related to health care to provide educational guidance which the advisors can then use to guide the investor in the best and financially healthiest direction.
© 2018 Spectrem Group