For those who are looking for help with everyday activities such as eating, bathing and dressing, often necessitated because of chronic illness, disability or frailty, long term care is something that more and more of us need to plan for.
Whether it is for care in their own home, community or residential care home, either by family or professional carers, considering the options available is important.
"With medical advancement, improved personal health, lifestyle and financial wellbeing, we all know of friends or family who are in relative health well into their eighties or even nineties. Retirement should be a long and happy one, with good health, independence and dignity in our own home until the very end, and to help achieve this, considering your approach to long term care provision cannot start too soon."
Whether you require domiciliary, intermediate Care, NHS Health Care, where the NHS pays for care if your condition qualifies, or you require residential care, can only be assessed at the point care is required, though planning ahead for the potential need will provide peace of mind to you and your family.
It is important to understand what your local authority will provide, who will carry out an assessment at any time by approaching them directly or via your GP.
For those with combined assets and income (including any social security income support benefit entitled to whether being claimed or not), or half of any jointly owned assets exceeding £23,250, (2012/13), you will have to pay in full for your own long term care with the exception of any NHS Contributions towards long term nursing needs.
If you comfortably exceed these amounts you should look at the most efficient ways of affording your chosen care, otherwise you may find that funds quickly erodes and if your chosen care home doesn't accept Local Authority funding rates, either your family will have to pay the difference to keep you there or the home will ask you to be moved.
One of the most popular methods of ensuring this doesn't happen, is to look at long term care annuities, where for a single payment, the provider guarantees to pay the requested income every month for however long it is required.