In-Home Care for an Aging Parent Doesn’t Have to Break the Bank

More and more older Americans want to stay in their homes as long as possible. Thankfully, doing so may be more affordable than they believe.

While in a perfect world, people would plan and save their whole lives for such situations, the reality is not everyone can or does—for a variety of reasons.

In its article, You Can Afford a Home-Care Worker, the AARP offers tips for those planning ahead so they can afford in-home care in the future, as well as those who are in immediate need of such care. For those who are planning ahead, the article suggests investing in long-term care and life insurance policies with in-home care benefits.

For those who are in more of a “crisis-mode,” the article contains the following advice:

  1. Research services on eldercare.gov and benefits.gov
  2. Check out PACE (Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly), a Medicare and Medicaid program aimed at keeping frail seniors out of nursing homes
  3. Find out if any individual or group life insurance policies have cash value that can be used toward in-home care
  4. Investigate community resources such as the local Area Agency on Aging office and senior centers

Physicians Choice Private Duty offers quality in-home care for seniors. If you have a loved one who wants to remain in their home as long as possible, give us a call at 402-332-2273 to discuss how we can help make that a reality.

IN-HOME CARE COSTS BREAKDOWN

You Can Afford a Home-Care Worker

You Can Afford a Home-Care Worker

The majority of today’s seniors say they would prefer to stay in their own homes as long as possible. At the same time, many adult children stress over how they will be able afford in-home care for their elderly parent. The truth is, it ends up being more affordable than they think.

You may believe that hiring in-home care for your aging parent is something you simply can’t afford. Think again. Not only is such care more affordable than you might think, there are resources available to families who need help.

How to Pay for In-Home Care

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In-home health care is not a luxury reserved only for the rich. Families from all income levels are able to afford in-home care for an elderly parent. The key is to do your homework.

In-Home Care Costs Breakdown

IN-HOME CARE COSTS BREAKDOWN

Keeping your elderly parent in his or her own home isn’t as expensive as you might imagine. It will, however, depend on things like the type and amount of care required.

When an elderly parent wants to stay at home, it is unlikely that they will be able to do so without some amount of help. Whether they will need assistance with personal care and daily activities or require specialized nursing care, it is the rare senior who can truly go it alone.

Even when family members are nearby to help, hiring in-home health care assistance will likely be necessary. The good news is that home care is usually much less expensive than moving your loved one to an assisted living facility or nursing home.

The need for in-home care is exploding with more and more aging baby boomers looking to age in place. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of home health care aides will expand to approximately 1.3 million by 2020, an increase of 70 percent from 2010.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services report that Medicare and Medicaid currently pay for 65 percent of home health care costs. Other payments come from a combination of state and local governments, seniors themselves and private insurance.

Many adult children stress over how they will be able to afford in-home care for their elderly parent. The truth is, it ends up being more affordable than they think. Further, the IRS allows tax deductions for certain medical expenses. What follows are some of the most common ways to cover the costs of in-home health care:

Annuity Income.

When your parent uses savings to buy a conservative annuity designed for retirement, a lump sum is paid to a financial institution and a predictable monthly income is provided for life. A tax or financial advisor can help you decide if this is the best option for your parent.

Grants.

There are several nonprofit groups that help pay for in-home care, especially if the individual suffers from a specific medical condition such as Alzheimer’s or diabetes, for example.

Individual or Group Life Insurance Policies. 

Some policies have cash value that can be used toward qualified in-home care expenses. An accelerated death benefit charges for long-term care up to a certain amount per day or month. Typically, these benefits are capped at 50 percent of the death benefit.

Long-Term Care Insurance.

This type of insurance pays for health and personal care in a variety of settings—including private homes. Financial planners will tell you that it is in your best interest to buy this type of insurance before it is needed. It also is important to choose your policy carefully as different companies have different benefit conditions.

Medicaid and State Programs.

Medicaid benefits vary from state to state so contact your regional Agency on Aging to learn if your parent qualifies.

Medicare.

When in-home care is needed for only a short period of time, Medicare may cover up to 100 percent of the costs for low-income seniors. Seniors who don’t qualify for standard Medicare may qualify for in-home personal care through All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly.

Reverse Mortgage.

This type of mortgage provides cash for in-home care but the homeowner is still responsible for taxes and other bills. Tread carefully with this option as equity in a home can run out while care is still required. A financial, mortgage or tax advisor can help you decide if this is a good option for your parent.

Veterans Benefits.

The Veterans Administration offers a variety of subsidized home care services for veterans and their families. Contact your local Veterans Administration office for information.

The majority of today’s seniors say they would prefer to stay in their own homes as long as possible. In-home care provides them the freedom to do so without breaking the bank.