Should You Hire a Home Caregiver or Move to Assisted Living?


Making the decision to move to an assisted living community or a nursing home, or to stay at home and hire someone to help you with every day tasks, house cleaning, cooking and even possibly personal hygiene care, can be a difficult decision. A number of factors will influence the choice. Here are a few of the variables to consider.

Do You Have Friends, Family and Other Available Caregivers?
If you have family members willing to help with your care, you can save considerable money on your care by staying at home and letting family members shoulder the burden, while hiring in-home care for just a few hours a week. If you don’t need 24/7 hour assistance or someone to monitor your health around the clock, staying at home and hiring help is a cost-effective solution to take care of every day aspects of life that you’re no longer able to manage.

How Much Do You Pay for Your Home, Including Expenses?
Staying home or moving to an assisted living community, unfortunately, is often a matter of budget and finance. While it would be ideal to make the decision based on emotional and practical factors, rather than what is more cost-effective, the fact is that seniors on a fixed income must budget carefully.

In an assisted living facility, most of your expenses, including travel and some meals, may be covered under one monthly fee. If you continue to live in your home, you’ll have to pay utility bills and an added monthly bill to cover in-home care.

A move to an assisted living community may be covered by other types of insurance. Not all insurance will pay for in-home care. Medicare, your insurance company or a financial advisor can help you run the numbers and determine the best financial choice.

Are You Ready to Move?
The housing market is picking up, so this may not be as much of a concern as it was even a year ago. An ideal situation for many people would be to sell the house and make enough on the sale to cover the move to an assisted living community.

If, for some reason, you can’t (or don’t want to) sell your home right now or rent it out, the best decision is to look for in-home care.

Freedom: At Home or In a New Community
Whether you hire in-home care or move to assisted living, you don’t have to give up the freedom you treasure. Assisted living communities often have organized outings and day trips, and most provide plenty of fun activities for the members without leaving the communities. You may find your social life thriving in a senior community.

On the other hand, if you already have a strong social network right in your neighborhood, staying where you are may appeal. You might also become friends with your in-home caregiver, but they should not have to represent your whole social life. A home caregiver can drive you to senior events but if your community doesn’t have a lot to offer for the elder population, an assisted living community may offer more in the way of an active lifestyle that will help you stay sharp and stave off depression, which can often occur when seniors realize they can no longer care for themselves the way they used to.

The Bottom Line on Getting Care
In-home care is available at any level, providing the same assistance residents would receive in a nursing home, or simply dropping by a few times a week to help with chores.

Ultimately, the decision to stay home and receive care or move to an assisted living facility hinges not on the type and quality of care you need, but on where you would prefer to receive that care. The amenities at many nursing homes and assisted living communities could make moving a desirable option.

SeniorLiving.Net is a free service for families to use that are looking for senior care or senior living for a loved one. Call (877) 345-1706 to speak to your local Care Advisor about senior care providers in your local area.