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Home care: staying in your home for as long as you can

Money Tips

If it’s at all possible, people tend to prefer to stay in their own home for as long as they can, however, this does put additional stress and strain on partners as well as families who take on caring responsibilities.

“Most clients would like to stay at home if their home can be modified a little, and they can get the support to enable them to live comfortably there for as long as possible,” says Louise Lakomy, Director of Crystal Wealth Partners.

“It’s become particularly important during Covid-19 because it’s been difficult to visit people in nursing homes, so people are increasingly exploring in-home care options as a viable alternative.”

Whether you elect to remain at home or move into care there are some significant financial implications, and it’s important not to rush into a decision.

“Financially, it’s really quite complex, like anything to do with getting older,” says Louise.

“There comes a point where you reach a threshold for government support through the Home Care Package, which is designed to help older Australians access affordable care services at home, if they meet an income test.”

The level of financial support you can receive is based on your income from aged pension and super, and can make a huge difference in helping someone stay in their own home, as the services on offer can range from personal care to transportation – or simply a carer being present while a partner can have some valuable time out of the home.

The process of finding a provider, however, can be daunting.

A variety of organisations provide these services, however as soon as you are eligible, says Louise, it seems as if the providers are notified – leading to, in some cases, undue pressure being applied.

“One of my clients felt very pressurised by one particular provider,” she says. “They wanted her to sign up straight away – she found the whole process and options available difficult to understand, and that combined with the pressure being applied led to a lot of additional stress during an already difficult period.”

It’s important to not rush into an arrangement and assess the options that are out there, because different providers offer different services at different prices.

It is a complex decision, and it’s important to seek help and advice from both family members and your advisor.

Ultimately, however, it can be a more economical path forward, and help people stay in their homes for as long as they want – which is an incredibly valuable option to have.

If you or a loved one is considering Home Care, talk to Louise or another of the team here at Crystal Wealth – we’ll help you understand the options you have and help provide the information to make the best decision for you and your family. 

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