If you are 55 and older, you are probably asking yourself some questions like:

  • How much is enough? 
  • How much do I need to retire? 
  • What do I do if the stock market crashes?
  • How am I going to create a guaranteed income out of stocks and bonds? 
  • And what happens if I need long-term care?

There are many more questions to address, but these are some of the most frequently asked by the women I work with.  This is why I have been helping women over the last 35 years create retirement income plans that addresses all these issues.   

One of the big decisions you will need to make at age 65 is which Medicare plan you want to select.  This area is complex, and you don’t want to blow it.  I’m turning 65 in October and that is why I’ve invited Medicare Expert, Danielle Roberts, the founder of Boomer Benefits to share her wisdom on Smart Women Talk this month!  During our interview, we will explore the Medicare Annual Election Period, the different plans available and why selecting the right one for your specific needs is crucial. 

We will also talk about what to do when you travel in retirement.  I met with a couple who had a terrible experience in Cancun with the Medicare plan they chose.  The husband had a heart attack on vacation and went to the hospital.  The hospital would not accept his Medicare plan, and they ended up with a six-figure hospital bill on their credit card!  In fact, it’s been over three months, and they are still waiting to find out what, if any, of the charges will be reimbursed.  Be sure to attend our show so you will not make the same mistake! 

Another big question you will need to address in your retirement planning is what you want to happen if you need long-term care.  You don’t want to just ignore this topic.

I teach long-term care planning for the Michigan CPAs, and in my last seminar, I shared that 70% will need long term care but only 10% of Americans over age 65 have coverage.  What would happen to your retirement income plan if you needed care?  Have you accounted for it? 

Planning for long-term care is even more important for women.  This is why:

  • Women comprise 64% of LTC claims.
  • 75% of unpaid care givers are women.
  • Women are likely to be on LTC claim 50% longer than men.
  • Women live an average of 5 years longer than a man.
  • 75% of women aged 75 do not have a spouse to help with their care.
  • 40% of Alzheimer Caregivers die from stress-related disorders before the patient dies!

Have you been a caregiver to a loved one?  If so, you understand how important planning is.  The typical unpaid caregiver is a middle-aged woman who works (or did) work full time, but loses over $324,000 in earnings, retirement savings, promotions, Social Security and pension credits, as well as time with her family.   

Ask yourself, “Who will take care of you when you are old?”  You know the fear of dying has been replaced with the fear of living too long – or the fear of running out of money.

Having the right long-term care plan in place will make all the difference.  LTC planning isn’t just about buying the right type of policy, it’s about having the right kind of legal documents in place so you can maintain control even when you cannot make decisions for yourself. 

Do you really want the court to appoint a caregiver for you and a financial manager?  I don’t! 

Join me this month on Smart Women Talk, when fellow caregiver, Colleen Kilpatrick, and I will share our personal caregiving stories, as well as tips you can implement immediately, and the scoop on the new innovative policies today.

So, this is the time to take control and see where you stand and to look at your options.  It’s time to create a plan.  To help you get started on this process, you can download our new Smart Women Life and Financial Planner to help you get organized and find your materials.  Plus, you can book a time with me to talk about your own situation at www.talkwithkatana.com   I work with women all around the world virtually as well as in person.

Remember, no matter where you are in life, there is always a plan for you!


Katana Abbott, CFP®, is a Retirement Income Coach and Certified Social Security Claiming Specialist, founder of the Midlife Millionaire® Solution, and the host of Smart Women Talk. For over 35 years, Katana has helped baby boomers plan for retirement, including how to create lifetime income, how to optimize their Social Security benefits, launch an encore career and prepare for long-term care.  She has written several books, created a financial literacy course, and is a popular speaker. Katana has been honored by NAWBO as one of Detroit’s Top 10 Businesswomen, receiving the Breakthrough Award. To download her new retirement guide, Three Smart Strategies to Maximize Your Retirement Income, visit www.katanaabbott.com.