How Much Does Senior In-Home Care Cost?
We’re all growing older and wiser. In the U.S. alone, there are 45 million people aged 65 or older. By 2030, it will be 73 million. Their neighbours to the north are seeing similar growth, with an expected 9.5 million Canadian seniors by 2030.
Bottom line: a lot of people will have to face senior care decisions for their aging loved ones in the near future. The first choice of many families would be to help their loved one stay in their home for as long as possible. But in home care and other care services can take many forms and the costs of care can vary wildly.
While we can’t tell you exactly what the cost of care for your loved one will be, we can walk you through the different types of care services and what they entail.
This article covers:
- The cost of care: personal caregiving
- The cost of care: home health aides
- The cost of care: home nursing care
- The cost of care (alternatives): assisted living and nursing homes
What are the costs of in home care?
The cost will depend on the type of senior care services your loved one requires. We’ve broken down the most common home care options available.
Personal care costs: $600–$3,000 a month.
Taking on a personal care role for elderly family members or loved ones is an enormous act of generosity and love. On the surface, being a personal care aide for a loved one is free—or at least inexpensive. In reality though, there are hidden out-of-pocket costs you need to consider before deciding to go down this route.
According to a study from the AARP, 75% of personal care aides say they’re spending up to $7,242 on out-of-pocket in home care each year. This is due to a number of daily living factors, including:
Accommodation and housing expenses make up half of all personal caregiving costs. Whether contributing to a loved one’s rent or mortgage, home renovation expenses, or paying for utilities like heat and electricity—personal care assistance costs add up.
In the U.S. caring for a loved one can also mean you’re in charge of their medical care. Payments for doctor’s appointments, hospital bills, accessibility devices, therapy sessions, medical equipment, or adult day health facilities can amount to over $1,200 each year.
Traveling to a loved one’s home, bringing them to their favourite neighbourhood activities, and running errands can eat up gas money and may require car maintenance costs.
Personal financial costs
Many family caregivers sacrifice their own earning potential by reducing work hours, leaving their job entirely, getting into debt, or spending their own savings.
It’s worth noting that some personal caregiving costs go beyond monetary expenses. Bathing your loved one and lifting heavy objects around the home are activities that can cause physical stress and burnout, leaving you vulnerable to health issues. Plus, personal caregiving is emotionally difficult. Caring for your loved one can often lead to your own fatigue, anxiety, and depression.
As Nancy LeaMond, Chief Advocacy and Engagement Officer for AARP stated, “Family caregivers are the backbone of America’s long-term care system, and that backbone is breaking.”
So what are the alternatives to personal care aides? Depending on your loved one’s physical and mental health needs, hiring a home health aide to support your loved one’s lifestyle can ease the burden of personal caregiving. Even splitting care services between you and an agency can go a long way to support your mental health and ensure your loved one is being cared for.
Home health care aides costs: $100–$1,500 per month
Not every senior needs round-the-clock, full-time in home care services and the costs of home health aide services vary, depending on your loved one’s needs. Hiring a home health aide to visit your loved one a few times a week can be a more affordable care solution. At Nurse Next Door, the majority of senior care only requires a few hours of care, a few times a week. Even paying less than $100 each week is common.
Unlike personal caregivers, home health aides are usually vetted, and have some kind of training and certification to provide professional and supportive in home health care services for elderly clients. The cost of in home care is an investment in your loved one’s quality of life. The right caregiver not only should help a senior live comfortably as they age—they should enrich their life and bring happiness to their days.
Home health aide services can include:
Companion Care Services
Feeling lonely is one of the leading causes of depression in seniors. If you worry your loved one is becoming isolated, a senior companion can help them stay engaged in their home and in their community. From going on walks to chatting around the dinner table, companionship care gives your loved one a healthy balance of independence and social interaction.
Safety and Monitoring
Your loved one should feel safe and comfortable while aging in place. Fortunately, home health aides are trained to do a home safety evaluation on arrival. They look at all potential hazards around the home and focus on senior fall-prevention strategies.
Meal Preparation, Personal Care Assistance, and Homemaker services
This is a good option if your loved one doesn’t require medical services or other health services. Home aides can provide household tasks like cooking and preparing your loved one’s meals as well as other light chores. This situation is ideal for seniors who need support with daily activities but don’t require a high level of care or nursing services. Personal care assistance can also be included in this service.
Most health aides are willing to transport your loved one to the grocery store, doctor’s appointments, extra-curricular classes, and other errands. This helps keep seniors independent and relieves family members who may have day jobs and other commitments.
Having the right home health care agency that can actually manage all of your care and coordinate the details is the key to happier aging. If this is something that interests you, we recommend speaking to the Nurse Next Door Care Team directly to discuss your loved one’s unique situation and needs.
In home skilled nursing care costs: $1000–$4,000 per month
Caring for your loved one can involve in home medical care. Instead of disrupting your loved one’s routine with trips to their doctor or hospital, many relatives of seniors choose to bring the nursing care to them. Having a skilled nurse available to your loved one means they’ll have the medical care they need without sacrificing their lifestyle.
The costs of this type of home care can be customized—depending on whether you require a few hours a day, a few times a week, or around the clock care.
Services covered can include:
In home nursing care
Usually, your skilled nursing care team can connect with your loved one’s medical team. This ensures they have all of the relevant information to send registered nurses or certified nursing assistants to provide medical assistance for your loved one in their own home.
Alzheimer’s and dementia care
If your loved one is experiencing memory loss, confusion, wandering, difficulty completing familiar tasks, it may be time to consider Alzheimer’s and dementia care. Skilled nursing care can help your loved one continue their daily routine despite cognitive decline.
Medical administration and personal care services
Personal care assistance can be a sensitive issue for seniors. A good home care agency will ensure the safety and privacy of your loved one, and preserve their dignity as they continue all of the personal care activities that make up daily living.
Although the costs of around-the-clock care can be more expensive than intermittent hourly visits, it will allow your loved one to age in the comfort of their own home for as long as possible. Sometimes, around-the-clock care can be a temporary solution. For example, if your loved one is recovering from surgery, or if you are a personal caregiver and need additional support when you have to go away for a period of time.
All of Nurse Next Door’s medical caregivers are rigorously vetted and licensed to provide direct care to you and your loved ones. Hourly rates for in-home care range from $18-30 for Instrumental Activities for Daily Living, $20-35 for Activities of Daily Living, and $50-130 for skilled nursing care.
Assisted Living facilities costs: $4,000–$7,000 per month
While there are many flexible in home care service options—including taking on the role of caregiver personally—sometimes it makes sense to graduate to assisted living facilities.
Assisted living facilities suit seniors who require medical services , round-the-clock care, or long term care that their loved ones can’t provide. For example, if the assisted living costs are lower than the costs of a home renovation, it may be a more affordable, appealing option.
Usually, your loved one can choose between an individual room, an apartment space, or a shared living arrangement. The costs of assisted living or residential care facilities depend on which housing option your loved one prefers, but generally all options are designed to give a ‘home’ experience that supports your loved one’s independence.
Lastly, we want to mention the cost of care in nursing homes. While nursing homes won’t provide the in home care experience, they’re still an option to consider when choosing a care plan for your loved one. In the U.S the national average cost of a private room in nursing homes can run you over $87,000 each year, or $7,500 per month.
Whatever the cost of home care service you choose, it’s always a good idea to do your research before committing to anything. That way, you’ll choose the best care possible for your loved one.
If these home care services sound like they could help your loved one live at home longer, we’d love to set up a FREE Caring Consult™ to build a senior home care plan catered to your needs and your budget.
Give us a call toll-free at +1(877) 588-8609 to get started!
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