When your loved one chooses an assisted living community as the best support for achieving an independent and fulfilled life, discussing costs and financial options are usually part of the decision.
However, funding senior care may be easier to accomplish once you consider all the sources that might be available.
Creating a budget for senior care
Before beginning the process, it’s essential to work with accurate information. While there are estimates for senior living expenses available on-line, it is much better to talk to a specific community for the actual monthly rate.
Once you know the amount of money needed for senior living, you can create a correct budget. Begin by helping your loved one gather important financial information. The following is a summary of what documents may be needed:
- Bank checking statements
- Bank savings statements
- Investment documents
- Retirement or pension information
- Long term care insurance policy
- Life insurance policies
- Veteran service information
- Home mortgage and valuation information
- Family contributions
Download our complimentary Successful Transitions guide.
Funding senior care
Families are often surprised when they realize all of the different financial options that may be available:
Bank accounts and statements
Make a list of all bank accounts and current balances. Look at the latest statements for both checking and savings. This could also include Credit Unions or other institutions for savings. Ensure all are accounted for. Many families are often surprised to learn of an old account that was never closed.
Again, make a list of all the investment accounts your parents may hold. Check for the latest statements or if you can access the information on-line. You may want to talk to an accountant to understand if there will be capital gains or losses if the accounts are cashed out.
Retirement or pension information
If one or both of your parents worked for a company or organization that provided a pension or contributed toward a profit-sharing plan, you’ll want to review this information. It might be advisable to speak to a financial advisor or accountant to better understand any tax implications.
Forms of income
If your parents are receiving Social Security or any other forms of income, this amount should be included as possible sources to help pay for senior living expenses.
Long-term care insurance policy
Some older adults purchased a long-term care policy when they were younger. These policies do help pay for care and assistance but there are often restrictions or qualifying events you will want to confirm.
Life insurance policies
Many families are unaware that a life insurance policy may be available to contribute to assisted living expenses. If your parents do hold this type of policy, you’ll want to confirm if it can be sold, cashed in or converted to a policy that might help pay for long-term care.
Veteran program information
If either of your parents are a Veteran or the surviving spouse of a Veteran, there may be assistance available. The Veteran’s Administration does offer benefits if certain qualifications are met.
Selling, renting or accessing a home’s equity
For homeowners, their house is often the largest asset. Selling the home and using the cash – or renting out the home might be a viable source of funding for assisted living expenses. Reverse mortgages and tapping home equity can also be used to gain funds to pay toward senior care expenses.
Do your parents have any personal property that could be sold in order to generate cash? This might include jewelry, art, automobiles or boats among other personal possessions.
Some family members are able to contribute money to their parents’ assisted living expenses. If this is the case, you’ll want to add this amount when figuring your budget.
An additional consideration
While a decision about the best home for your loved one would of course expand beyond the financial, senior living expenses when compared to the costs of remaining at home can be very similar. Or at times are even more affordable when all expenses are considered.
If creating a budget for at-home care, it’s important to include additional home expenses such as property taxes, utilities and maintenance, as well as entertainment and activity fees, fitness memberships, meals and preparation, transportation and the cost of a home service provider. To draw an accurate comparison, it’s helpful to list all of the services provided at the assisted living community and then calculate the costs of each if your loved one was to remain at home.
The Charleston Senior Living Community
Locally owned and operated, we offer personalized care by our dedicated team members. Setting a new standard in Assisted Living and Memory Care, we don’t define our residents by their limitations or illness but instead believe in focusing on the positive and the possibility.
The Charleston Senior Community includes private apartments for assisted living residents and for those living with Alzheimer’s or dementia. Your loved ones will benefit from our attention to detail, routine health assessments, delicious dining and daily activity programs as we support everyone to live their best life.
Consider a few of our amenities:
- Chef-led dining program
- Community movie theater
- Live entertainment
- Outdoor patio
- Social lounges
If you or your family is thinking about Assisted living or Memory care, we hope you will consider The Charleston Senior Community. We are a trusted resource and are here to answer any questions, contact us today.
We also invite you to download our complimentary Successful Transitions guide to learn more about making the move to senior living.