It’s finally that time. You’ve worked your entire life to get ready for retirement, and the time is nearing. There are tons of questions around what to do when the time to retire approaches. “When do I apply for Medicare?” “Do I need supplemental insurance?” “What about Social Security benefits?
You aren’t the only one with these questions. We have the answers. Below, we have listed out the 4 main things you need to do before you retire.
Get Your Social Security Benefits
Enroll in Medicare
Get a Medicare Supplement
Get Dental, Vision, & Hearing Coverage
Many people think of getting Social Security benefits as the first big step of entering retirement. Social security gives monetary assistance to people who are retired or disabled. If you are at least 61 and 9 months old, not currently receiving Social Security benefits, applying for retirement benefits for the first time, and wanting your benefits to start in at least 4 months, you are able to apply for social security retirement benefits. You can apply for these benefits online.
Once you reach your full retirement age, you can receive all of your Social Security benefits. Some people may receive benefits as early as 62, depending on their qualifications. Monthly benefits are reduced I you start your benefits any time before your full retirement age.
Social Security benefits last as long as you live. This means you are economically protected for the rest of your life.
Once you know your Social Security benefits are secure, the next step in the retirement process is to take care of your health insurance needs. You can do this by enrolling in Medicare. If you want to ensure you have protection in the event of any medical needs such as hospital stays, surgery, or outpatient checkups, you need to have Medicare.
There are 4 main parts of Medicare: Part A, Part B, Part C (Medicare Advantage), and Part D. The most important parts of Medicare lie in Parts A and B. Without Medicare Parts A and B (also known as Original Medicare), you will not receive coverage for hospital stays or routine doctor visits.
Equally as important, Medicare Part D is essential if you take any prescription medications. Without Part D, you will not receive coverage for any drugs that you need to pay for your medical conditions. If you do not have this coverage, you will have to pay for your medications out-of-pocket. This can quickly get expensive, which is why we recommend getting a Part D plan as soon as possible.
Unfortunately, Medicare does not provide 100% coverage for your medical needs. Typically, it only covers 80% of all services. You would usually be responsible for the remaining 20%. You can get coverage for these gaps with a Medicare supplement plan.
With some Medicare supplement plans, you can receive coverage for all of the gaps in Medicare. This means that you would have to pay absolutely nothing out-of-pocket. This protects yourself financially, especially in the case of a medical emergency.
Original Medicare and Medicare supplement plans do not cover your dental, vision, and hearing needs. As you age, it is important to stay on top of these three facets, as there are many conditions that may arise during this time period.
The best way to make sure you are covered in the event you have a dental, vision, or hearing expense is to buy Dental, Vision, and Hearing (DVH) coverage. GoMedigap has researched several options and has determined that a combined DVH plan makes the most sense. It combines the deductible for all of these serves. So, any covered expenses for any of the 3 services are applied to the deductible.
DVH coverage is completely optional, but we do recommend that you pick up a plan to protect yourself from any unexpected costs. In the end, it is better to be over-protected than to be surprised with large medical bills that could quickly deplete the savings you worked so hard all of your life for.
We’re Here for You
You are not alone during this retirement process. If there is any question you have about Medicare, Medicare supplement plans, enrolling in a DVH plan, or any other aspects of retirement, don’t hesitate to give us a call. We’re available at (800) 310-2550 and we’ll be more than happy to help.