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How to Pay for In-Home Senior Care

July 7, 2013

The Cost of In-Home Senior Care

While the cost of in-home senior care isn’t outrageous and can often times be more affordable than most nursing homes or assisted living, it is still an extra cost which can sometimes be difficult to cover. In-home senior care typically costs between $16 to $29 per hour for health aids and $13 to $24 per hour for home aids without medical training. Those rates are generally pretty affordable when only requiring a few hours of service a day, but when it comes down to 12 to 24 hours a day for in-home senior care, it can add up quickly.

The following are 7 resources whereby you may be able to cover the cost of in-home care:

  • Reverse Mortgage
  • Veterans Benefits
  • Life Insurance
  • Long-term Care Insurance
  • Annuity
  • Medicare
  • Medicaid

Covering The Cost of In-Home Care With A Reverse Mortgage

If you are over the age of 62 and solely own your home with most of the mortgage paid off, you could be eligible for a reverse mortgage. A reverse mortgage works by utilizing the equity value of your home to allow you to get cash either all at once or as monthly payments. A reverse mortgage does have its own restrictions and rules such as mortgage insurance and homeowners insurance so it’s important to review all of your options and talk to a qualified mortgage broker.

Using Veterans Benefits For In-Home Care

If you are a veteran you may be eligible for veterans benefits which can be quite helpful in financially assisting you with in-home senior care in the form of disability payments. Disability payments, known as “aid and attendance” by the VA, can be qualified for due to the need of long-term help with the activities of daily living or whose spouse needs such help. While qualifying for veterans benefits can be difficult as you must receive documentation from a doctor after a complex qualification analysis, there is help available from the Veterans Service Organization which can not charge you for their help.

Utilizing Life Insurance for In-Home Senior Care

In many cases, when the beneficiaries would no longer need the assistance, life insurance policies are “cashed in” so to speak, using accelerated or living benefits. This would allow the policy holder to essentially sell back their life insurance play for a 50 to 75 percent value of the policy value. If you or a loved one is in financial need while the beneficiaries would no longer need the assistance, you may want to consider talking to your life insurance agent to determine the restrictions on accelerated or living benefits to help cover in-home care services.

Long-term Care Insurance To Help With In-Home Care Costs

Long-term Care Insurance can be tricky when it comes to covering the costs of in-home care. Many policies will only allow you to use long-term care insurance to help cover the costs of assisted living or nursing homes and will only assist with the costs of in-home care when health needs are extremely serious and require a nurse practitioner or nursing aide. Some policies, though, are more flexible and will allow you to obtain coverage for typical in-home care. Speak to your insurance agent to determine if you are able to use your long-term care insurance to cover your costs of in-home care.

Using Annuity for In-Home Senior Care

Many seniors will take advantage of an annuity to turn a retirement savings or pension into a stable income stream that can pay out until death or for a set number of years. When investing in an annuity, though, it is important to beware of unscrupulous representatives who may attempt to take advantage of you or your loved one. Be sure to find a firm with a good reputation before investing in an annuity.

Paying for In-Home Care With Medicare

Although qualifying for Medicare coverage for the use of in-home senior care can be difficult, it has become much easier to obtain in the recent years and can be extremely helpful. It used to be that you could only qualify for Medicare coverage contingent on the fact that you or your loved one’s health was improving during the time you, or your loved one, was using in-home care. Now, due to a recent lawsuit, Medicare coverage for in-home care can still be received even if there are no health improvements. This is especially helpful for seniors who are suffering from chronic disorders such as Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s.

Taking Advantage of Medicaid For The Use of In-Home Care

Medicaid can be qualified for by having a low income or little to no savings or assets. If your loved one qualifies, they can use Medicaid to cover the costs, or most of the costs, of in-home senior care. While Medicaid can be extremely helpful when it comes to paying for in-home care, there are different rules and conditions on a state to state basis. Also, when verifying eligibility for Medicaid, the government will review financial information for the last 5 years, therefore, attempting to “hide” money by giving away savings to a relative or friend in an attempt to qualify for Medicaid, can lead to steep fines.

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About the author

Tyler Williams

As an Area Owner and Operator of a Home Matters Caregiving franchise, I am committed to ensuring exceptional outcomes for our valued clients and caregivers. My passion for elevating our service quality is matched by my role as a blogger and social media manager for the franchise, where I share insights, updates, and foster community engagement. Prior to senior care, I used my strategic communication and brand development skills as the Marketing Director of a regional bank. My diverse experience supports my commitment to excellence and innovation in both healthcare and digital communication.
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