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Preparing to Live to 100 – And Beyond

Posted by David Cheatham, July 8, 2019

At one time, living to 100 years old was an uncommon occurrence. Today, we’re seeing more and more people hit that milestone. In fact, demographers say that the first person to live to 150 years old is already alive today (of course, we don’t know who it is yet)! And it’s not all about the younger generation, either; a healthy 65-year-old today is likely to live to at least age 90.

Living to 100 is an astounding feat, but a longer lifespan does present certain challenges. Are you prepared for the possibility of living a full century?

Financial considerations. A longer lifespan means a longer retirement. Anyone retiring today should analyze all aspects of their retirement income plan, along with other factors that will impact that income. For example, where do you plan to live in retirement? For many, it makes sense to downsize costs now, so that income will stretch farther. Choosing a low-maintenance home is another important consideration. Few 100-year-olds would feel up to making extensive home repairs (or have the budget for it).

Healthcare plans. A greater likelihood of living to 100 means a greater likelihood of someday needing more intensive supports, either to remain safely at home, or to thrive in a group home setting. Retirees today should be investigating their long-term nursing care options, evaluating the potential cost, and planning for that expense. Familiarize yourself with the options in your area, and engage in open conversations with your children and grandchildren about your wishes.

Other things to consider involve your quality of life as you age. Making sound nutritional choices, engaging in regular physical activity, stimulating your mind, and maintaining healthy social connections will all contribute to a longer and happier life. And of course, continue to attend regular check-ups with your physician for preventive screenings. He or she can make additional recommendations to help you not only survive to 100, but also to thrive.

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