CHADNEY BULGIN: Care fees planning is becoming a fact of life

As we get older, we are more likely to need care and support. Medical advances also mean it is now possible for people who develop care needs at a younger age to live long and fulfilling lives.

The Office of National Statistics suggest that four million older people in the UK have a limiting longstanding illness. This equates to 40 per cent of all people aged over 65.

But care and support needs are unpredictable. The Government estimates that a quarter of us may need to spend very little, but one in ten people have more serious needs and face significant care costs.

In the worst-case scenario, people have had to sell their home or exhaust their life savings to get the care they need. It’s a subject we often prefer to sweep under the carpet, but the need for later life care is more common as we live longer.

You may be aware that the Government has introduced legislation to “cap” the amount an individual has to pay towards long term care costs. This is planned to come into effect in April 2020.

However, the rules about what money spent on staying at a care home counts towards the cap are quite complicated and most people will pay much more than the ostensible “cap”.

There is also a common misconception that once the cap is reached all costs will stop, which is not the case.

Even after the cap is met, the individual will still be responsible for paying for the ongoing board and lodging fees that are charged by care homes plus any difference between the actual fees the care home charge and the rate the local authority say they can pay.

So, while actual long term care costs will reduce under the new legislation, it will still not be cheap. That’s why financial planning for later life care is becoming more common.

Chadney Bulgin’s specialist advisers are expert at building personal care fees plans dovetailed to each person’s specific needs. Call us on 01243 532161 or email info@chadneybulgin.co.uk to discuss how we can help you.

Neil Stratford, Financial Planner, Chadney Bulgin