Whether you’re looking for somewhere that can give a parent the 24 hour care they need, or considering a wonderful retirement community yourself, you’re likely searching for ways you can make future senior care options more affordable. At Nye Health Services, we are here to help. Once you consider the costs of home ownership, meals, health care and transportation, you might be surprised at how affordable our communities really are.
Whether you’re ready to move into an assisted living community or are interested in a bit of extra help while continuing to live in your home, we will work with you to help you find funds from a variety of sources. Here are some answers to the most common questions we receive about paying for various types of senior care, as well as tips for making your senior years more affordable!
How Much Does Senior Care Cost?
The average cost of senior care can vary significantly depending on where you live and the level of care that you need. In 2017, the national median cost of living in an assisted living community was approximately $45.000 per year, but many states have a much higher or lower average.
If you require a higher level of care, you can expect an average cost of $4,290 per month for in-home care and $8,517 for residential skilled nursing services. Again, these national averages vary depending on the state you live in. Although approximately 90 percent of senior care is covered through private pay, you have a variety of options for making your senior years more affordable.
Private Options for Making Senior Care More Affordable
Many seniors have a variety of types of insurance and other private funding available that can be applied to assisted living or in-home care.
Your life insurance policy can help you cover the cost of senior care in a couple of ways. Although you won’t receive the full face value of your policy to put toward senior care, cashing it in is one of your first options for finding money to fund your senior care. You can also convert your policy into a deferred annuity, which allows money from your policy to be paid directly to your assisted living community or in-home care provider each month.
Long Term Care (LTC) Insurance
LTC insurance policies generally have benefits that range from $50-300 per day. These funds can be used to supplement other sources to offset your total cost of senior care.
A reverse mortgage allows you to obtain cash from the partial value of your home. This can be a particularly attractive option if you would benefit from in-home care services but aren’t quite ready to move into an assisted living community, as it does not require you to sell your home before receiving benefits.
This type of loan is usually not taxed, but you will need to pay interest on it. You should also be aware that the Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) is the only type of reverse mortgage that is federally insured and that choosing this option means that leaving your home to your children usually will not be possible.
A bridge loan gives you the option of quickly moving into a senior living community even if you aren’t able to sell your home or other assets immediately. Although each bank handles bridge loans differently, you will generally need to make a down payment in order to obtain benefits up front. You (or your family members) will then make monthly payments as needed until your assets sell, at which time you will pay the full lump sum.
Public Options for Making Senior Care More Affordable
Although public options usually do not provide as much money to work with as private choices, the following sources may be available to you if private funding options do not meet your needs.
Many wartime veterans and their spouses qualify for the VA Aid & Attendance Benefit, which is a monthly payment in addition to your pension that can be applied to senior care.
You won’t be able to use Medicare funds to cover the cost of moving into an assisted living community, but they can be applied to up to 100 days of temporary care following an illness or injury.
It’s important to note that Medicare will not cover assisted or traditional long-term skilled nursing care, but it can be applied to a short-term skilled rehabilitation stay when qualifications are met. For more information, you may visit the official Medicare & Medicaid services website.
Medicaid funds can be applied to senior care in some states. Although it is unlikely to be your best option, it is worth looking into if you have no significant assets or income to use.
How Can I Learn More About the Best Options for Me?
At Nye Health Services, we are here to help make your transition to senior living as smooth as possible. We are a top choice among seniors throughout Nebraska and surrounding states, and we work closely with each individual to create a senior care plan that best meets their unique needs. Contact us today to talk with one of our senior care experts about how we can make your future assisted living options more affordable or to learn more about our campuses!