How to plan for higher health-care costs in retirement

Personal Finance

Think about your health costs as part of your overall retirement plan when you’re assessing savings strategies.

“It’s a cash flow issue, not a lump sum expense,” McClanahan said. “I tell people, save for the future and do what you can to control your medical expenses, just like you try to control your other expenses.”

Keep in mind that strategies can differ based on the age at which you retire, too. Those retiring early (i.e. before age 65), will need to price out coverage options like staying on an employer’s plan under COBRA or buying a marketplace plan.

Aiming to retire at 65 or later? You’ll need to make sure you don’t miss the enrollment window for Medicare Part B, McClanahan said, and weigh a Medicare Advantage Plan for extra coverage.

Health savings accounts, or HSAs, can be an important resource to save during your working years, certified financial planner Erika Safran, founder of Safran Wealth Advisors in New York City, told CNBC last week.

The accounts, available to workers with high-deductible health plans, offer a triple tax advantage, she said. Contributions are either pretax or tax-deductible, typically grow tax-free and can be withdrawn without incurring taxes when used toward qualified medical expenses.

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