Long-Term Care Costs and the National Retirement Risk Index

Even if households work to age 65 and annuitize all their financial assets, including the receipts from reverse mortgages on their homes, the National Retirement Risk Index (NRRI) has shown that 44 percent will be ‘at risk.’ ‘At risk’ means they will be unable to maintain their standard of living in retirement. When health care costs were included explicitly, the percentage of households ‘at risk’ increased to 61 percent. Our previous analysis of health care costs, however, did not consider possible expenses for long-term care towards the end of life. This brief explores how the need for long-term care could affect the NRRI.