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Balance Aged Care Specialists

What does home care cost?

Of home will be driven by whether you opt for;

  • Government subsidised home care package OR
  • Fully paid home care (ie not Govt. subsidised)

Government subsidised home care package

Once you have been approved for a Government subsidised home care package, & then granted your home care package (at one of the set levels), then I like to look at the financial side as an account (we’ll call it a home care account) where money is put into the account, & you then spend that money on various services, which takes money out of the account.

The Government will contribute between $22/day (Level 1) & $135/day (level 2) into your “account”.

You are asked to contribute;

  • Basic Fee (currently $10.32/day ($144.48pw) & depending on your financial situation
  • Income Tested Fee – (for some people, not charged to everyone) determined by your income. The Income tested Fee is capped at a maximum of $29.63/day $410.20pw (however you would need to have income of over $51,563pa (single person) & $78,946pa (couple) to pay the maximum). You need to complete the Income Assessment form (SA456) for this fee to be determined by Centrelink.

The Basic fee does NOT have to be paid if you choose not to, however there will simply be less money in your account to spend on services if you don’t pay it. Son there is some flexibility. The amount of money going into your account each month gets reduced by the amount you spend on services. However whether you receive a level 1 package, which will probably only get you a couple of hours a week, OR a level 4 package, which could get you 10-15 hours per week, you will pay the same amount as a Basic Fee (if you pay it) & the income Tested Fee.

Getting good advice or guidance on the costs, may be able to save you money.


Fully paid home care (ie not Govt. subsidised)

If you do not get granted a subsidised package from the Government OR you are waiting for the approval to come through from the Government for a subsidised package, you can always get care/help/support delivered which is NOT subsidised, meaning that you will have to pay the entire cost yourself.

The costs will depend on the type of service you want, you could well be charged around $50/ hour, however it is assumed that the service is delivered during normal business hours. If you need nursing care in the middle of the night, or on weekends or public holidays, then the hourly rate will increase.

Further it also depends on the service requested, having a registered nurse will be a more expensive hourly rate than, a personal carer (ie someone who comes to help you dress or shower), or you may need a handyman, to fix a few things around the home, will be cheaper than a qualified tradesman like a plumber or electrician.

However, even if it does cost more for the unsubsidised support & care, if you think about it, it’s highly likely to be cheaper than full time residential aged care, plus it allows you to remain living at home a bit longer.      And isn’t that what most of us want.

I tell our clients, “so what if you spend a bit of money on yourself to help you stay at home longer” (if that’s what you want) “then your children will get a bit less from your estate”. If they don’t want to get less form your estate- ask them to help you pay the cost of home care. You will soon see what is more important to them.

An erxample of a “home care” account may look like this;

July 2017

Money inAmount $’sMoney outAmount $’s
Basic Fee ($10.32/day)$319.92Administration Fee$350
Government subsidy for Level 4$4,185Case Management Fee$360
Income Tested Fee ($6/day)$186House Cleaning$250
Government subsidy reduction by Income tested amount-$186Meal Preparation 31 days @ 2 hours$1,360
  Registered Nurse 1 hr per day$1,572
TOTAL fees into the account$4,504.92Total expenses out of the account$3,892
  Surplus to carry over to August$612.92

Home care is a wonderful alternative to getting residential aged care, however for some people it is only temporary, & may allow you to stay home for a couple of months longer or a couple of years longer.

If you need help to understand the best way to fund home care, call us on 02 8814-7307, or use the contact page on the website to enable us to call you back

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