Here are some useful tips and advice on preparing for the cost of care in your old age, including handy links to guides and care calculators to help you plan later life care.
Live-in Care Hub reports, such as the No Place Like Home report, show that most people do not realise how expensive care is either in a care home, with live-in care or home helps. This is because many people just don’t want to think about later life care, often don’t think they will need it, and as a result many people are left unprepared.
Most people have to pay at least some money towards the cost of care in their old age. The family home is usually the biggest asset anybody has so that is usually used to pay for care costs if there isn’t a spouse or partner still living there.
Those in England, Scotland or Northern Ireland who have more than £23,250 pounds or £23,750 in Wales in assets have to pay towards care themselves until such a time as their assets reach these threshold amounts. Any savings, property, shares and income you have are taken into account to determine your assets. Your home may not count though if you live with a partner over the age of 60.
Given that most people spend roughly 2.5 years receiving care and the cost of care, whether as live-in care or in a care home, can be anything from £500 a week up to £1,500 a week (or even more if you require specialist nursing care), overall costs could reach between £65,000 and £295,000 depending on where you live – and that’s just an average. The person may need care for longer, and they may need more intensive care which could push the overall total up.
Ways To Pay For Care
There are plenty of ways to fund the cost of care. One way is via a care fees plan where you pay a one off sum of money and then the company providing the plan pays monthly amounts for your chosen type of care. So if you have a live in carer, the company will pay a monthly amount for your care to the live-in care provider (assuming you do not employ the carer directly). There are lots of details to this kind of plan which has pro’s and con’s so do seek independent financial advice when considering this kind of option.
Another option is to make more money from your savings. An IFA could check how you could make more money from your savings, although this may come with some financial risk so do consider this carefully. If you have more than one property you may want to rent out the ones that are not your main home for extra income (please note it is important to ensure any IFA you approach is authorised to give later life advice, you can find out who these people are via SOLLA, society of later life advisors)
Preparing Makes All The Difference
However you plan to pay for elderly care, planning in advance makes such a difference. Planning means you know what to expect and you can save, or make arrangements to put the finances in place. It also means that you can put legalities in place (such as your POA, power of attorney) to ensure that the type of care you want is organised for when you need it. So if you want to stay in your own home and have a live-in carer then you can make that quite clear in advance. The sooner you prepare for the costs, the sooner you can enjoy every moment of your life as it is now, relaxed about the fact that the next stage is completely organised.