Lawmaker's bill would allow home equity as payment for LTC

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House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health Chair Nathan Deal (R-GA) is planning to introduce legislation that would establish state demonstration projects to help U.S. residents use home equity to pay for long-term care.

As the population ages, more people will need long-term care, witnesses said at a recent subcommittee hearing. Reverse mortgages that allow residents to remain in their homes and receive long-term care could address this issue. Also, tax incentives that reduce the cost of long-term care insurance would also be favorable, they said.

"With over $2 trillion tied up in their homes, home equity has the potential to help rebalance our nation's long-term care delivery system, integrate financing for housing and supportive services for seniors, and create new opportunities for public-private partnerships," said Barbara Stucki of the National Council on Aging.