If a loved one is in need of memory care, your family may be researching different communities in the area. Of course, the primary focus will be on quality of life and compassionate care. But also, a priority is creating a budget and deciding how to finance this care.
You may find yourself unsure of what resources are available. The following tips can help in exploring all funding possibilities.
Tips for paying for memory care
Decide where the care will be delivered
Costs of memory care will vary depending on where and at what level it is received. Memory care can be provided in the individual’s home during the earlier stages of dementia. However, safety from wandering or other home hazards will need to be considered.
Memory care can also be delivered as a service in an assisted living community or in a stand-alone memory community. The cost of paying for memory care is typically higher than assisted living because it requires specially designed residences and common areas and a higher skilled staff, as well as security, therapy and programming.
Gather accurate cost information
One of the first steps when researching funding sources for memory care is to begin with an accurate cost for the community you’re interested in. It is difficult to rely on estimates because they can vary so widely, depending on geographic location, the organization and level of care needed. When researching funds to pay for memory care, it is better to speak to a community first-hand and ask about their fees and services.
Download our complimentary guide, Just the Facts: Your Guide to Memory Care.
Resources to explore
Once you have a better idea of the cost of memory care, you can begin exploring several different options:
If a loved one has a private insurance policy, it might be able to contribute to the cost of paying for memory care. Families should locate all insurance policies when discussing funding.
Retirement benefits and investments
Your loved one may have a retirement plan that can help offset the cost of memory care. Discuss whether there are any Individual Retirement Accounts (IRA), 401Ks, or pensions. There may also be stocks, bonds, annuities, real estate or personal property that can be sold for cash.
Accumulated personal savings over the years may be helpful in paying for at least a portion of memory care expenses. Make a list of all banking and other cash accounts. Some family members may also be able to contribute.
Life insurance plans
Restrictions can be different for each policy. If your loved one has a life insurance plan, check with the agent to see if it can be converted to cover the costs associated with a residential community or cashed out for a lump sum payment. It’s important to recognize that the benefit received upon death of the policy owner will be cancelled.
Long-term care insurance
Your loved one may have taken out a long-term care policy that could help in paying for memory care expenses. Policy benefits can vary and include restrictions and qualifiers on when payments will begin.
if your loved one was a Veteran or the surviving spouse of a Veteran, programs such as the VA’s Veterans Aid and Attendance benefit may provide financial assistance for memory care expenses. Beneficiaries will need to meet certain military service and medical care requirements.
If your loved one is a homeowner and has accumulated equity, tapping into the home’s value may help pay for memory care. Selling the home or renting it out can provide a source of income. A reverse mortgage allows homeowners to convert equity in the home into funds while still allowing a spouse or partner to remain living in the home.
Does Medicare cover the costs?
Medicare is the government-sponsored health care program for seniors aged 65 and older who have worked and paid into the system. Many older adults mistakenly believe that Medicare will pick up the tab for senior living communities. It won’t. But it can contribute to some expenses incurred, including those when paying for memory care.
Medicare won’t pay for the cost of assistance with activities of daily living, personal care or living expenses in a memory care community, but it can cover some of the medical care costs associated with dementia, such as:
- Cognitive assessments to diagnose or confirm a dementia diagnosis
- 100 days of skilled nursing care followed by an event, such as a hospital stay
- Care planning to learn about treatment options
- Prescriptions to delay the progression of memory loss
- Certain custodial care services and therapies
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 guide, Just the Facts: Your Guide to Memory Care.