How to Reverse Medicare Surcharges When Your Income Changes What happens if you are a high-income Medicare beneficiary who is paying a surcharge on your premiums and then your income changes? If your circumstances change, you can reverse those surcharges. Higher-income Medicare beneficiaries (individuals who earn more than $85,000) pay higher Part B and prescription drug benefit premiums than lower-income Medicare beneficiaries. The extra amount the beneficiary owes increases as the [...]

The median cost of a private nursing home room in the United States has increased to $97,455 a year, up 5.5 percent from 2016, according to Genworth's 2017 Cost of Care survey, which the insurer conducts annually. Genworth reports that the median cost of a semi-private room in a nursing home is $85,775, up 4.44 percent from 2016. The rise in prices is much larger than the 1.24 percent and 2.27 percent gains, respectively, in 2016. The price rise was slightly less for assisted living facilities, [...]

Now Is the Time to Review Your Medicare Options Are you happy with your current Medicare plan or plans? Now is the time to think about whether you are in the right plan or whether a new plan could save you money. Medicare's Open Enrollment Period, in which you can enroll in or switch plans, runs from October 15 to December 7. During this period you may enroll in a Medicare Part D (prescription drug) plan or, if you currently have a plan, you may change plans. In addition, during the seven-week [...]

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has announced changes to the federal reverse mortgage program. Citing the need to put the program on better financial footing, HUD will raise reverse mortgage fees for some borrowers and lower the amount homeowners can borrow. A reverse mortgage allows a homeowner who is at least 62 years old to use the equity in his or her home to obtain a loan that does not have to be repaid until the homeowner moves, sells, or dies. In a reverse mortgage, [...]

Be Aware of the Kiddie Tax Before Leaving an IRA to Children Grandparents may be tempted to leave an IRA to a grandchild because children have a low tax rate, but the "kiddie tax" could make doing this less beneficial. An IRA can be a great gift for a grandchild. A young person who inherits an IRA has to take minimum distributions, but because the distributions are based on the beneficiary's life expectancy, grandchildren's distributions will be small and allow the IRA to continue to grow. In [...]

Connect With Us