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How to Pay for Senior Housing: What are my Options?
When it comes to caring for our loved ones, we want to provide them with the best possible care. However, with the cost of care constantly increasing, it can be challenging to know how to pay for it. Fortunately, there are a variety of payment options available to help you afford the care your loved one needs. Here are some of the most common options:
Private pay simply means that you have the financial resources to pay for care without assistance from other programs. It is sometimes referred to as self-pay. Private pay is a good option for those who have long-term care insurance, savings, retirement accounts, or other assets that can be used to pay for care. Keep in mind that the cost of care can be high. Private pay may be a great option initially; however it may not be sustainable over the long term. Future planning should also be taken into consideration.
Most assisted living communities offer a choice of care levels, all-inclusive or fee-for-service pricing. All-inclusive pricing means that a single monthly fee will cover room and board and includes three meals per day, housekeeping, laundry services, WIFI, electricity, transportation, and daily activities. Fee-for-service pricing means a resident pays only for those services they use.
Upon the resident's arrival, the staff at the assisted living community will conduct a thorough assessment to evaluate their specific needs and preferences and determine the most appropriate level of care and assistance for them.
The communities are specifically designed to provide seniors with varying levels of care to meet their individual needs. By being aware of the different care options available, residents can choose the most appropriate one for them, whether it is an all-inclusive or fee-for-service pricing model. These communities aim to provide a comfortable and supportive living environment that promotes the wellbeing and independence of their residents.
For those who require minimal help, lower levels of care (level 1) are available, which may include medication administration and supervision from skilled professionals such as LPNs and RNs. Higher levels of care (level 3+), on the other hand, are designed for residents who require more hands-on assistance with activities of daily living, such as bathing, dressing, and eating, and may involve personal care from CNAs. By offering these different care options, assisted living communities can provide tailored support to each resident to help them live as independently and comfortably as possible.
To clarify further, there are three main categories of care provided in assisted living communities: supervisory care, personal care, and directed care. For supervisory care, skilled professionals such as Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs), Registered Nurses (RNs), and Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) offer general supervision to residents, including assistance with administering prescribed medication and intervening in emergencies.
Personal care, on the other hand, involves primary caregivers like CNAs, who assist with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) such as eating, bathing, toileting, and dressing. These caregivers are essential for residents who cannot perform these activities independently.
Finally, directed care is designed for seniors who require more structured programs and services. In these cases, the community or residential care home organizes activities and services for seniors who are incapable of recognizing danger, expressing a need, making primary decisions, or asking for assistance.
According to the Genworth 2021 Cost of Care Survey, the median annual cost for assisted living in Dallas-Fort Worth is $50,340 per year. We have seen a significant rise in these costs over the past two years, with most communities implementing an annual increase of 3-13% per year.
The total cost of residing in an assisted living community is determined by several factors such as the resident's required level of care and the number of support levels they need. For instance, an apartment in the community may be priced at $3,200, with an additional $500 per month for level 1 care. If a resident's health deteriorates, necessitating more support, they may move up to level 2 care, which incurs an additional cost of $1,000 per month, bringing their total monthly bill to $4,700.
Another cost associated with moving into an assisted living community is the one-time, non-refundable community fee, which ranges from $1,500 to $3,000 or more. This fee covers maintenance costs such as painting, dent removal, carpet cleaning, and landscaping and is charged by most communities.
It's important for residents to understand all of the costs associated with moving to an assisted living community, the community fee, the apartment fee, and the fee for their preferred level of care to make informed decisions regarding their care and financial obligations.
VA Aid & Attendance
VA Aid & Attendance is a benefit that many families overlook. It's available to veterans or surviving spouses who need additional money to help care for ailing parents or loved ones. This benefit is a pension benefit and is not dependent upon service-related injuries for compensation.
VA Aid and Attendance benefits provide monthly payments added to the amount of a monthly VA pension for qualified Veterans and survivors. It is a monthly pension benefit that provides tax-free payments to Veterans who served during wartime, who need help with daily activities, or are housebound. In addition to being available for Veterans, single surviving spouses and dependent children may also be eligible to receive this benefit. To qualify for this pension, the Veteran or their surviving family need to meet the means-tested income and asset thresholds.
You may be eligible for the VA Aid and Attendance benefit if you get a VA pension and you meet at least one of these requirements.
· You need another person to help you perform daily activities, like bathing, feeding, and dressing, or
· You have to stay in bed—or spend a large portion of the day in bed—because of illness, or
· You are a patient in a nursing home due to the loss of mental or physical abilities related to a disability, or
· Your eyesight is limited (even with glasses or contact lenses you have only 5/200 or less in both eyes; or concentric contraction of the visual field to 5 degrees or less)
VA Aid & Attendance can help pay for care in the home, nursing home, or assisted living community. The monthly benefit amount depends on the veteran's or surviving spouse's eligibility, and the amount received changes yearly. For the year 2023, a single veteran may receive a monthly benefit ranging from $1,432 to $2,229. A couple may qualify for a benefit of up to $2,642 per month, while a married couple where both spouses are veterans may be eligible for a monthly benefit of up to $3,536.
VA Housebound Benefits
You may be eligible for Housebound benefits if you get a VA pension and you spend most of your time in your home because of a permanent disability (a disability that doesn’t go away).
To be eligible as a veteran, an individual must have completed a minimum of 90 days of active duty, with at least one day served during a time of war. Combat service is not a requirement for veteran eligibility.
When applying for benefits as a surviving spouse of a veteran, the individual is not required to have been married to the veteran at the time of their death. However, the surviving spouse must be single at the time of application and cannot have remarried since November 1, 1990.
It is important to note that you can’t get Aid and Attendance benefits and VA Housebound benefits at the same time.
Understanding how to qualify and apply for these benefits can be confusing and could take 12 to 18 months to receive without the assistance of a VA Accredited Claim's Agent. Fortunately, the VA will pay retroactively from the date of application. There are a limited number of Accredited Claims Agents who have been appointed by the Veterans Administration to offer assistance for pension-related matters. Families seeking help with these matters should be aware that only these accredited professionals are legally authorized to provide such services. For complete information and eligibility requirements on all VA pension benefits and rates vist https://www.va.gov/pension/eligibility/
Long-Term Care Insurance
Long-term care insurance is a type of insurance that helps cover the costs of long-term care services, such as nursing home care or in-home care, for individuals who can no longer perform activities of daily living (ADLs) on their own. This type of insurance can provide financial protection and peace of mind for both the policyholder and their family.
According to the Genworth 2021 Cost of Care Survey, the national median annual cost for a private room in a nursing home is $105,850. The national median hourly rate for a home health aide is $27, and the median annual cost for an assisted living facility is $53,775. These costs can vary widely depending on the location and level of care needed.
Long-term care insurance is designed to help cover the costs of long-term care services, depending on the specific policy and the level of care needed. Some policies may also offer benefits for alternative care options, such as adult day care or respite care. An individual must have purchased it before they need it and must have activities of daily living (ADLs) needs and be currently in need of service. Some policies have other requirements such as the number of beds and a nurse on staff. The average benefit is $100 per day, but many policies have inflation riders (normally around 5% per year). A policy may cover $100 per day now but may be worth $150 per day in 10 years.
It's important to note that long-term care insurance policies can be expensive and may not be the right choice for everyone. Factors such as age, health, and financial situation should be taken into consideration when deciding whether to purchase a policy. Additionally, some policies may have limitations and exclusions, so it's important to thoroughly review and understand the terms of any policy before purchasing.
Long-term care insurance can offer valuable protection to individuals who want to safeguard their assets and ensure they have access to quality care when needed. However, it's crucial to conduct thorough research and seek guidance from a financial advisor or insurance expert before committing to a policy. For families, long-term care insurance can be an effective way to ensure their loved ones receive excellent care while also safeguarding their assets and lifestyle. Retirees and those nearing retirement who have worked hard to save money may also benefit from long-term care insurance as a means of preserving their financial resources. Furthermore, long-term care insurance may prove to be a valuable resource for individuals who lack the financial means to pay for such costs or a support system to care for them.
Medicaid pays partially or fully for assisted living costs at selected communities in some states, including Texas. There is usually a waiting period of 60 to 90 days to apply and receive benefits. Medicaid is typically only accepted at the more modest care communities in the area. To qualify for Medicaid, an individual must meet certain income and asset requirements. Seniors and families needing to transition right away, may need to pay 4-12 months as private pay before receiving the government assistance. It is against the law for Certified Senior Living Consultants to be compensated for referrals to government housing and nursing homes placements.
When it comes to paying for care options, families have several options to consider, including private pay, Veterans Aid & Attendance, Long-Term Care Insurance, and Medicaid. Assisted living can be a more cost-effective option for long-term care compared to nursing homes or in-home care, with costs varying based on location, apartment size, and level of care needed. Families should also consider the different pricing structures and levels of care available at each assisted living community, as well as the one-time non-refundable community fee.
If you're considering senior care options for a loved one, it's important to have a trusted partner in the process. A certified senior advisor will conduct thorough research and due diligence to identify communities that are a perfect match for you to receive proper care and age in place. The CSA, being an expert, will accompany seniors and their families during community tours to help ask and answer questions and ensure that they find exactly what they need for the short-term and long-term, they won't simply give you a list of 5-6 communities to visit on your own.
Local advisors possess valuable information about the communities and their residents, including the executive directors and nursing directors, to help identify which ones have high turnover, don't stand by their promises, or don't have the right attitude and desire to care for residents. A strong team culture centered around resident care can only be achieved if communities train their teams to provide appropriate care for each resident.
Unfortunately, lead generators often trick seniors and their families into partnering with them, only to bombard them with calls and provide recommendations without having ever visited the locations they're suggesting and without providing the necessary support, education, and tours to navigate the transition successfully. Seniors moving to an assisted living facility must learn the nuances of navigating the controlled environment for a successful transition.
Tracy Toomer, a Certified Senior Advisor (CSA)®, CDP, MBA, with CarePatrol of Collin County-Central is here to help. Tracy can provide you with the guidance and support you need to make informed decisions in finding a wholistic approach to safer senior living, care and aging in place.
"2021 Cost of Care Survey," Genworth, accessed March 29, 2023, https://www.genworth.com/aging-and-you/finances/cost-of-care.html.
Department of Veterans Affairs. (n.d.). Veterans Pension Rates. Retrieved March 29, 2023, from https://www.va.gov/pension/veterans-pension-rates/
Tracy Toomer, Certified Senior Advisor (CSA)®, CDP, MBA, CarePatrol Collin County Central, Board Member, Alzheimer’s Association Dallas & Northeast Texas Chapter; Board Member, National Placement Referral Alliance Assosciation Texas. LinkedIn: https:///www.linkedin.com/in/tracy-toomer-certified-senior-advisor-csa-mba-aa37b615
Step into The Gallery at North Port, where the stories of diverse backgrounds, experiences, and vibrant personalities converge to create an unparalleled living experience. Much like a traditional gallery that showcases art to inspire and connect, The Gallery takes this concept further by celebrating the residents themselves as the cherished works of art within its walls.In this unique haven, residents are revered and their stories shared among a close-knit family of friends. The ethos of The Gallery revolves around recognizing that each individual is a masterpiece in their own right, and the community is a canvas that enriches and amplifies their narratives.Celebrating You as the MasterpieceAt The Gallery, every resident is recognized as a unique masterpiece. The community celebrates the diversity of stories, backgrounds, and experiences, fostering an environment where residents feel appreciated and valued for their individuality. The Gallery's team understands that personal stories are the heartbeats of the community, and they are dedicated to adapting and catering to individual preferences, ensuring that residents continue to lead lives on their own terms.Different Levels of Lifestyles and CareOne of the hallmarks of The Gallery at North Port is its commitment to offering various levels of lifestyles and care, recognizing the distinct needs and preferences of each resident. Whether residents seek independence, personalized support, or specialized memory care, The Gallery provides tailored options that allow vibrant connections to flourish while ensuring that every day holds something new and enriching to become a part of their unique story.Spaces That Embrace ConnectionThe Gallery isnt just a place to reside; it's a canvas that invites vibrant connections and meaningful interactions. Its enticing spaces are designed to foster gatherings and appreciation, not just of the physical environment but of the greatest masterpiece the residents themselves. From cozy corners to community areas buzzing with activity, every space encourages residents to engage, connect, and celebrate lifes moments together.Enriching Lives Through Shared ExperiencesHere, life is a canvas waiting to be painted with shared experiences. Residents are invited to embark on a journey where every day unfolds new chapters in their stories. Whether it's engaging in creative activities, savoring culinary delights, participating in events that inspire, or simply enjoying conversations with friends, The Gallery ensures that each moment contributes to a richer, more vibrant tapestry of life. The Gallery at North Port stands as a testament to celebrating individuality, fostering connections, and providing a canvas for residents to live their lives as the cherished works of art they are. In this community, every story is revered, and every resident is the masterpiece that enriches the greater narrative of this vibrant living experience.
Nestled amidst the picturesque landscape of North Port, The Gallery stands as a testament to a senior living community that not only values individuality but also offers an array of care options to cater to the diverse needs and preferences of its residents. With a commitment to providing a continuum of care, The Gallery ensures that residents write their own stories, embracing vibrant lifestyles supported by compassionate and tailored assistance.Independent Living: Crafting Your NarrativeIndependent living at The Gallery means embarking on a journey where residents script their own narratives, surrounded by abundant options for enriching experiences each day. Its about joining a community of like-minded individuals who value creativity, freedom, and choice. Residents can be as social or private as they wish, fostering connections within the community and inviting family and friends to partake in the exciting experiences North Port has to offer.Here, residents revel in a lifestyle that encourages independence while having access to a rich tapestry of amenities and activities, embracing the freedom to curate their own unique stories each day.Assisted Living: Personalized Support and Enriching ExperiencesRecognizing the diverse needs of residents, The Gallery's Assisted Living program takes a personalized approach, honoring each individual's present circumstances and fostering a supportive environment. Through tailored plans of support and wellness, the dedicated team at The Gallery becomes an integral part of residents' stories, nurturing a sense of engagement, connection, and fulfillment.Residents receive the support they need to continue embracing a fulfilling lifestyle. By facilitating new life experiences, promoting activity, and fostering meaningful connections, The Gallery ensures that residents not only receive assistance but also thrive in a community that values their unique journey and contributions.Memory Care: Nurturing Unique Journeys with DignityThe Gallerys Memory Care program recognizes the uniqueness of each individual's journey and the challenges posed by cognitive conditions. The care team operates in real-time, understanding and honoring residents' strengths and abilities. The focus isnt solely on the challenges but on creating opportunities for social engagement and participation in both planned and spontaneous activities.Cognitive challenges can impact everyday living, and The Gallery places great importance on respecting and honoring each resident who becomes a part of its extended family. Through personalized care, stimulating activities, and a compassionate approach, the Memory Care program aims to provide an environment where residents can thrive and find moments of joy and connection amidst their journey.This article showcases The Gallery at North Port's commitment to offering a continuum of care, encompassing Independent Living, Assisted Living, and Memory Care services, ensuring residents find support, engagement, and fulfillment tailored to their unique needs and preferences.
Nestled within the vibrant community of North Port lies The Gallery, an exquisite senior living community that stands as a beacon of comfort, luxury, and attentive care. Spanning an expansive 233,058 square-foot campus, The Gallery is more than just a residence; it's a haven where the well-being and lifestyle of residents take precedence, promising a retirement experience unlike any other.Personalized Care and 24-Hour Support:At The Gallery, personalized care is a cornerstone of the resident experience. With a dedicated 24-hour on-site staff, including skilled nurses, residents can enjoy peace of mind knowing that assistance and support are readily available whenever needed. Whether its medical concerns or simply seeking a friendly face, the team ensures residents feel safe, comfortable, and cared for.Abundance of Amenities: The Gallery spoils its residents with a plethora of amenities, catering to diverse interests and passions. The community boasts thoughtfully designed activity rooms, where residents can partake in arts and crafts classes, fostering creativity and social engagement. The bocce ball court encourages friendly competition and outdoor fun, while the fitness center, equipped with state-of-the-art HUR equipment, supports residents wellness goals.Indulgence takes center stage at The Gallery's Casual Bistro and Cocktail Bar, offering delectable culinary experiences. For those seeking relaxation and pampering, the full-service salon ensures residents look and feel their best. The gardening club provides a therapeutic escape for nature lovers, fostering a sense of community among green-thumbed residents.Luxurious Living Spaces and Services:Residents at The Gallery enjoy spacious living quarters and villas, promoting a comfortable and homely environment. Design and downsizing services are available, ensuring a seamless transition into this maintenance-free lifestyle. Housekeeping and landscaping services relieve residents of household chores, allowing them to focus on what truly matters enjoying life to the fullest.The integration of local artist installations and collaborations adds an artistic flair to the community, celebrating creativity and cultural appreciation. Movie enthusiasts relish the on-site theater, while the wine room beckons connoisseurs for delightful tastings and gatherings.Enriching Experiences and Community Engagement: Themed events and scheduled outings keep residents engaged and entertained, fostering a vibrant and social atmosphere. The Gallery's dedication to personalized assistance extends to providing medical alert systems and on-site therapy services, ensuring residents receive tailored care and support.Pet-friendly policies create a warm and inclusive environment for furry companions, while private dining experiences add an extra touch of elegance for special occasions. The resort-style pool and outdoor entertainment area with grills offer residents the perfect settings for leisure and relaxation.Convenient Services and Connectivity: Transportation services to local community hotspots enable residents to explore and enjoy the best of North Port. Trash and laundry services alleviate daily tasks, allowing residents to embrace a more carefree lifestyle. Scenic walking trails wind through the community, offering serene escapes for moments of contemplation and exercise.This article focuses on highlighting the extensive amenities, personalized care, and enriching lifestyle offered at The Gallery at North Port, catering to the diverse interests and needs of its residents within a vibrant and supportive community.
Your loved one deserves a knowledgeable, professional and trusted partner for this journey. Choosing the right senior housing shouldn't be based on internet search or appearance alone. CarePatrol advisors study your family's unique situation and, using their industry certifications and extensive experience, provide unbiased guidance to help you answer the most important question, "Will this community truly care for my family member?"We promise to help you find the right: Assisted living Independent living Memory care Continuing care retirement communitiesTestimonials."Tracy was professional, caring, and went wayyyy beyond what I would have expected to help me take care of my parents. She was punctual, didn't waste my time looking at properties that weren't appropriate for my mother's needs, and a great advocate. She asked questions, that I didn't think of asking each facility. I can't say enough good things about her. I highly recommend her services to anyone in need. I'm proud to call her friend! "- Melanie StewartTracy Toomer was invaluable in helping us find a lovely home in an assisted living facility for my 92 yr old Mom. Her professionalism as well as care and warmth made a very difficult time much easier and found a wonderful new life for my Mom with caring supportive staff and residents. We feel so blessed that Tracy loves her work so much and was dedicated to finding us the best situation within our budget. The service CarePatrol provides gives that peace of mind that comes from knowing loved ones are well cared for.- Bonnie Walton"I want to tell you I think you are a fabulous woman. My opinion of you is that you are a professional with integrity in the highest sense of the word. I am grateful to God that he brought you into our lives". - Mary StierhoffCarePatrol is the nation's largest and most trusted senior living placement organization. Therefore, choosing the right senior housing solution shouldn't be based on internet searches or appearance alone. CarePatrol's nationally accredited Certified Senior Advisors(CSA)study your family's unique situation and, using their extensive knowledge and experience provide unbiased guidance to help you answer the most important question, "Will this community truly care for my loved one and treat them with the respect & dignity that they deserve?"CarePatrol of Collin County, TX, is passionate about helping you find an exciting home filled with friends, where you can relax and focus on building some of the best memories of your life. We aren't interested in placing our clients in the first place that comes along. We want to find the perfect fit that meets your lifestyle, physical and emotional needs, and social interests so you can continue to live a meaningful and vibrant life. We take the time with each of our clients to understand what makes them special to find a community where they will thrive. We learn about your physical needs and assess a community based on their ability to support you in every way you need. We advocate for you and your family and will always strive to deliver our services with the highest level of integrity, support, and compassion. Meet Tracy Toomer"Families know they can trust me because I am consistent - I follow through on what I say I will do, I will listen and support you, and help make decisions that are right for the family.Tracy is passionate about empowering seniors and their families as they face the complex challenge of finding the right senior living community. She listens carefully to all of her client's needs, concerns and preferences before recommending appropriate levels of care such as: Independent Living, Assisted Living, Memory Care, or In-Home Care.Learn more about CarePatrol of Collin County