When your loved one begins showing early signs of dementia, it’s best to begin making plans for their care right away—not only so you’re prepared when they need help to remain safe but also so you know how to budget for their care. Expense is often the number one concern when planning your loved one’s dementia care, and making a plan can help you anticipate what your budget should look like.
In-home dementia care costs are often much lower than that of nursing homes and assisted living facilities. The guide below provides a breakdown of the costs typically associated with in-home memory care, from caregiver fees to home modifications.
In-home dementia care can not only save you money, but it can also help your loved one feel secure and calm where they’re most comfortable. LightSpring Home Care’s certified caregivers provide your loved one with personal care and companionship, monitor your loved one’s symptoms, provide safety supervision, and even drive them to appointments and social events. If your loved one needs assistance to age in place with dementia, contact LightSpring Home Care today.
Average Monthly Costs of In-Home Dementia Care
Per a cost-of-care survey conducted by Genworth in 2022, the average monthly cost for 40 hours per week of in-home memory care is approximately $4,580. Since many in-home care agencies will provide care for up to 44 hours per week, the cost may be closer to $5,038, depending on how many hours of care your loved one needs.
If your loved one requires 24-hour care or live-in care, home care agencies like LightSpring Home Care charge a flat daily rate for these in-home care services. Be sure to take this into consideration when arranging your loved one’s care.
Factors That Impact Dementia Care Costs
Though there is a national average for in-home dementia care costs, the price of your loved one’s care may vary depending on certain factors. For instance, state laws around in-home care may raise or lower your monthly costs, as might the area where you live.
You may also want to consider the difference in the cost of a home care agency and independent caregivers, especially regarding the level of care your loved one requires.
Where You Live
In-home memory care costs can vary widely depending on where you live in the United States. According to Genworth, in-home care can cost anywhere from $18.50 per hour in West Virginia to $35 per hour in Minnesota.
These rates are often determined by the cost of living in these areas. For example, the higher cost of living in Massachusetts and New Jersey means hourly rates are slightly higher—$31 and$29 per hour, respectively. Conversely, a slightly lower cost of living in Pennsylvania means the cost of care is also lower—usually about$26 per hour.
Agency vs. Independent Caregiver
Independent caregivers usually cost about 20% to 30% less than home care agencies, according to Paying for Senior Care. These savings may seem significant, but it’s important to take into account everything that goes into hiring an independent caregiver. You have to create a job description, interview potential caregivers, and handle their salary—including making sure to withhold the right amount of taxes.
With a home care agency, you work with the office team to build a care plan for your loved one, and they assign caregivers qualified to provide the right kind of care. If you have questions or concerns, you can contact the office team. Otherwise, all you have to do is enjoy your loved one’s company.
Level of Care Needs
Your loved one may need less care at the onset of their condition than they do as it progresses. For instance, if your loved one has sundowners dementia and gets easily confused in the evenings, they may only need a few hours of care between dinner and bedtime. That means you may only need to pay for 23 or 25 hours of care per week at first.
Additionally, the money you save short-term can be stashed away to help pay for more extensive care later on.
State laws around home care, insurance, and care waiver programs can significantly impact the cost of your loved one’s care. For instance, Pennsylvania has a number of expenditure waivers you can apply for to help pay for in-home dementia care. Some states, such as New Jersey, also have publicly funded state insurance that may partially cover the costs of your loved one’s care needs.
Hidden Costs of Dementia Care
Keeping your loved one safe and healthy at home will likely require expenses outside of the costs of dementia care. As individuals age, they often need home modifications, additional medications, and other resources to help them perform daily activities and remain healthy.
This is doubly true for those with dementia and other memory-related conditions. These individuals often develop mobility challenges and may need additional monitoring to ensure they’re physically healthy. Some of these things may be a one-time expense, while others may incur regular costs.
Some home modifications cost more than others. For instance, shower grab bars cost between $20 and $100 per bar. Prices vary depending on the brand, aesthetic, how many bars you need, and whether you need them to be professionally installed. According to GrabBars.com, the average installation cost for four bars is about $490.
Stairlift chairs are another common home modification for those with dementia. These chairs often cost between $2,000 and $4,000 before installation. However, Medicaid, Medicare, and private insurance often cover at least part of the cost of these home modifications.
Health Care Costs
Since dementia patients may not be able to clearly articulate their symptoms or changes in their health, they often require more regular health screenings to manage common age-related concerns like new aches and pains or changes in vision.
Additionally, medications used to treat dementia and Alzheimer’s disease—such as Cognex—can cost between $177 and $400 per month, according to Consumer Reports. However, like home modifications, some or all of these expenses may be covered by insurance.
There are hundreds of products on the market to help dementia patients complete daily tasks. Some of the most common products include adjustable beds, toilet risers, bidets, shower benches, and personal alert systems.
Each of these products will vary in price, depending on what model you choose and whether it needs to be installed by a professional. Be sure to check your loved one’s insurance policy to see whether any of these expenses may be covered.
If your loved one is receiving in-home dementia care, your home care agency may also be able to help you source these items at a lower cost.
Does Private Insurance Cover In-Home Dementia Care?
Most private health insurance plans don’t cover non-medical home care but will cover other costs associated with dementia care, such as durable medical equipment. Durable medical equipment includes any equipment your loved one needs to maintain their quality of life.
Common examples include walkers, wheelchairs, grab bars, and stair lift chairs. Dementia can significantly affect mobility, so be sure to check your loved one’s health insurance policy before paying out of pocket for these items.
Additionally, you may be able to get financial assistance from your state government or waivers to help you cover the cost of in-home caregivers.
In-Home Care Costs Compared to Nursing Homes and Assisted Living
According to the Genworth 2022 Cost of Care Survey, average monthly in-home dementia care costs are much lower than that of a nursing home or assisted living facility.
Forty hours per week of in-home memory care costs approximately $4,580, compared to $4,774 at assisted living communities. A semi-private room at a nursing home costs an average of $8,280, while a fully private room may cost up to $9,450 per month.
Even with the added one-time costs of things like home upgrades or the regular costs of home care supplies, in-home dementia care costs less than the alternatives—and physicians agree that remaining at home is better for these individuals’ health.
Get Affordable In-Home Dementia Care From LightSpring Home Care
At LightSpring Home Care, we support the families of dementia patients by offering them an alternative to a nursing home or assisted living care. Physicians often recommend that those with dementia live at home for as long as possible—familiar surroundings bring these individuals comfort, which slows the progression of this disease.
With our in-home dementia care, your loved one can remain safe, healthy, and happy at home. Our caregivers can help maintain their hygiene, keep their home tidy and free of tripping hazards, and provide compassionate companionship. From getting dressed in the morning to reminiscing over photo albums, our fully insured caregivers are qualified to provide your loved one with the best possible in-home memory care.
If your loved one needs assistance to thrive at home with dementia, contact us today. We’ll provide all the information you need, including the costs of dementia care, to make the best decision for your family member.