One of the many factors to take into consideration when choosing to put a loved one into assisted living is the associated cost of doing so. The costs of senior care are on the rise, and reports estimate that the average cost of assisted living for most seniors runs about $2000 to $5000 per month.
Fortunately, there are financial solutions available for individuals who are seeking a long-term care solution for their senior loved ones that will keep them safe, comfortable, and happy. Exploring this option can help make the decision to put a loved one into assisted living much easier, ensuring that this is a less stressful situation for everyone involved.
Things to Consider Regarding Assisted Living Costs
If you're worried about the costs of assisted living, there are a few things you can do to help prior to putting your loved one into assisted living. One of the first things that you should do is assess whether assisted living really is the appropriate option for your senior loved one's care.
Assisted living can be expensive, but more independent solutions such as hiring part-time care at a person's home may be a more cost-effective solution. Because this type of help is paid by the day or by the hour - usually around $14-24 per hour and $112-$192 per day - this can be a good solution for those seniors who only need care some of the time.
Another important thing to keep in mind is that moving from facility to facility can be costly, so doing your research ahead of time, understanding pricing considerations, and selecting the right facility the first time can be of great benefit to you when it comes to choosing the right care for your loved one.Also remember to speak with the assisted living facility that you are interested in regarding their pricing options, what they have available, and whether there are additional costs for the different services and levels of care that may be offered. Typically, the price of any assisted living facility is not set in stone and you can expect the facility to work with you to come up with the right solution for your loved one.
Paying with Medicare
If you already have Medicare for your senior loved one, then there are solutions available. However, bear in mind that because the program was not designed as a long-term care solution for seniors, Medicare will not typically take care of all the costs associated with assisted living. By speaking with your local Medicare office and exploring their options for assisted living, you can come up with a solution that may be able to help you pay for your loved one's care.
Paying with Medicaid
Different options are available for paying for assisted living with Medicaid depending on the needs of the patient. One of the important things to keep in mind regarding Medicaid is that they expect all income that the individual is receiving, if they are receiving any, to be used to pay for the long-term care of the patient. This means that using Medicaid to pay for assisted living may not be an ideal situation in some instances. However, protections are in place for the spouses of those who are moving into assisted living situations if the spouse is going to continue living on their own and receiving some form of income.
Paying with Veteran’s Benefits
In some instances, individuals will be able to pay with veteran's benefits for their long-term care solutions. Typically, veteran's benefits will not pay the entire cost for rent within one of these types of facilities. However, they can help to cover some of the associated costs of long-term care, including medical costs. Those who believe that they might qualify should get in touch with their local office to find out what facilities are available for assisted living, what types of benefits that they can expect to receive, and to find out how these benefits can be applied to the cost of staying in an assisted living facility.
Paying with Long-Term Care Insurance
One of the most beneficial situations for those individuals who will be seeking long-term care such as through assisted living is to invest in insurance that covers long-term care. This type of insurance is specifically designed to meet the needs of those who are going into assisted living and other forms of long-term care facilities for an undetermined amount of time. The operative word in this case is "invest," as this type of insurance typically functions best when acquired ahead of the time that an individual is in need of assisted living care.
Paying with Private Funds
There are many sources available for private funding at assisted living facilities. While this may not always be an ideal solution, making use of these funds can help in those situations where all the costs are not covered through other means. Some sources of private funds for assisted living include retirement accounts and 401Ks, savings accounts, annuities and insurance plans, trusts, home equity, and stock market investments. Approximately 61% of retirees in assisted living situations claim Social Security as their primary means of paying for housing, and this can be an ideal solution for those who are receiving most of their care, including transportation, medication, and meals, through an assisted living facility.
Often, assisted living facilities will work with those individuals who are paying for their care out-of-pocket in order to come up with a solution that will work for them and their loved ones. This is why it is important to open up and continue a dialogue with the assisted living facility that you choose for your loved one's care in order to ensure that you have different options for care available to you.
While the associated costs can be one of the more stressful aspects of choosing assisted living for a senior loved one, the important thing to realize is that there are solutions available.