With the addition of this new component, the already interactive cloud-based planning tool with its built-in Dynamic Plan Editor can now bring in personalized actuarial longevity projections, Social Security claiming options and health care expense projections, which include both Medicare premiums and potential out-of-pocket costs, into their client plans.
The latter is made possible through an integration with HealthView Services, which provides anonymized national health, Social Security and longevity data that can be incorporated into the process of plan creation.
With this data and Health+, advisors can more clearly and efficiently collaborate and demonstrate with clients based on their own individual health situation, and better plan for related expenses.
The data also helps advisors better select the most appropriate Social Security–claiming strategy for a given client or couple’s unique situation.
“[Prior to the integration], advisors would have to depend on conversations with clients to determine the length of the plan, or use some ‘rules of thumb,’” said Sheryl O’Connor, CEO and co-founder of WealthConductor LLC, the company behind IncomeConductor.
After all, as the company’s other co-founder, Phil Lubinski, said previously: “Sitting down with a client and talking [retirement] income with them is setting their death date, in essence.”
“As surveys show, though, only about 14% of advisors feel comfortable talking about health care and longevity with their clients,” said O’Connor.
So, the intention with Health+ and all the external comparative data it brings to bear, is to alleviate that uncomfortable conversation and make it a more objective experience for both the advisor and client, she said.
O’Connor said that HVS regularly supplies its data to large institutions, including several of the top 10 national banks and insurance carriers for their use internally.
Taking such large datasets and incorporating them into IncomeConductor’s Dynamic Plan Editor, which updates in real time whenever an assumption is changed, was a huge undertaking, she said.
Health+ is an add-on product that IncomeConductor subscribers can choose to incorporate—or not, and is available now to both Basic and Premium subscribers, whether they currently have a subscription or are newly subscribing.
WealthConductor is charging $300 annually to integrate HVS data into an advisor’s IncomeConductor cloud-based installation, though enterprise-level pricing is also available for larger firms or independent broker/dealers.
While current IncomeConductor users are already able to access the new Health+ component and its integrated data, those new to the product will have to return to the public-facing website for more information in the coming days (we will update this story when it becomes available).
“Leveraging personalized, actuarial data is a critical step in providing the peace of mind that health care costs will be covered during the retirement planning process,” said Ron Mastrogiovanni Sr., chairman and CEO of HealthView Services, in the announcement.
Mastrogiovanni first launched a tool for advisors, then called Healthcare Cost Analyzer, in 2011. The co-founder of FundQuest Inc. had been inspired to build the tool and HealthView while caring for his aging parents in retirement.
The many unexpected out-of-pocket medical costs they incurred while living with him—from a $2,000 hearing aid for his father, to his mother’s twice-weekly ambulance trips for dialysis and the $200-per-visit quarterly teeth cleanings that the dentist recommended, instead of the annual procedure that Medicare covers—proved a powerful wake-up call, he said.