How to Reduce the Cost and Make Home Care Affordable

As your loved ones grow older, they may be faced with the decision of whether to move into an assisted living or nursing care facility, or stay in their own home. If given the choice, many seniors wish to stay at home and live their twilight years in a comfortable, familiar atmosphere. If your elderly loved ones have already had to face this decision, and have decided that they do wish to stay at home, then you may need to hire an in-home care worker very soon. Home care workers can come to your elderly loved ones home as often as needed to help them with a variety of tasks. Home healthcare workers can provide companionship to your loved ones, help them with laundry, meal preparation, cleaning and running errands. Plus, they can also assist your loved ones with their hygiene care such as bathing, grooming and getting dressed. If your loved one has a medical issue such as an illness or an injury, a home healthcare worker can help them return to their healthy, vibrant self and forgo the need to visit the hospital for simple medical care. In-home healthcare workers are becoming a lot more popular as the baby boomer populations grows older and needs a little more help from the younger generations. As elderly populations increase, most of them desire to stay in their own homes at all costs. However, in-home care can come at a high cost. If your loved one wants to stay home and needs in-home care, then here are a few ways to afford private home care and not break the bank.

Try to avoid 24 hour home care

If your loved one just needs a little bit of help around the house, then do not opt for 24 hour home care. This type of care is designated for patients who are home-bound and virtually immobile. If your loved one can still get around on their own easily and is still in their right frame of mind, then 24 hour home care is not necessary. Having nurses or home healthcare workers in their home for 24 hours would necessitate at least three different shifts of workers. Paying a competitive salary to each of the workers would become very costly very quickly. If all of your loved one’s needs can be met in a simple 8 hour shift during the day, then opt to just hire one or two caregivers from a home care agency. Another option for seniors who do not need very much help at all, is to hire a home care agency and have a caregiver come to their home once per day or once per week for a few hours at a time.

Compare home care pricing packages in your community

Home care rates can vary drastically in your own local community. Just like when you try to find the right deal on a house or a car, you need to shop around and find the best deal on home care. Contact different home care agencies in your area to identify all of the rates and prices. By researching every option you have carefully, you can discover more affordable home care agencies and save money.

Private caregivers vs. Home care agency

When choosing a caregiver for your loved one you have the option of choosing a private caregiver or going through a home care agency. Both have their pros and cons, but one of the biggest differences between the two choices is price. Private caregivers are usually less expensive than home care agencies since they have less overhead costs. However, private caregivers do have their drawbacks. If you hire a private caregiver, then you are their boss and must supervise them yourself, do the payroll and compute their employee taxes. Many people do not want to bother with this aspect of private caregiving and would rather hire an agency and pay a bit more just to have the convenience of an agency.

Break the care into different shifts during busy times

Many home care agencies have minimum time requirements for staffing. For example, they may require their caregivers to be in a home for at least 3 hours before they are able to leave. Other home care agencies may have a minimum requirement of 4-8 hours. If a home healthcare agency that you hire has a minimum time requirement, then consider choosing the agency with the lowest minimum time requirement and staffing two different caregivers throughout the day. The first can come in the morning and help your loved one with personal care, meal preparation and errands. The second can then come in the afternoon or evening for bedtime care. Staffing caregivers in this manner allows you to cut costs. If you would choose the home care agency that requires caregivers to be in a home for long periods of time and your loved one requires morning and evening care, then you may end up paying far more for the care your loved one needs.

Make sure your caregiver is qualified, but not over-qualified

There are numerous qualifications that a person may have to become a caregiver. Nurses, personal support workers, home health aides, nurses aides and certified nursing assistants can all become caregivers. A good caregiver should be qualified, but not too over-qualified. Each qualification a person has will come with a set salary. For example, nurses will require a higher salary than a personal support worker. Choose a caregiver that fits the needs of your loved one but is not over-qualified so that you can save as much money as possible.

Home healthcare is a booming industry. Each day, more and more seniors decide to stay in their homes during their twilight years. To help them, many home healthcare agencies have opened their doors to new clients and are providing the care that seniors need. If your loved one has decided that they wish to stay in their own homes, then you may be facing the option of choosing a caregiver for your loved one. Caregivers can become pricey, but by following these tips you can find an affordable, wonderful caregiver for your loved one.

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