Understanding how care fees funding operates when you suddenly find yourself having to arrange a care home or nursing home for your elderly parent or relative, can be quite daunting. In fact, nearly 60% of adults over 50 have no idea how much long-term care costs are and would dramatically under-estimate the costs. Even more staggeringly over 40% of adults who have put others into care, did not seek advice about funding, and nearly 20% had to sell property just to cover care costs.
Whilst there is no simple and easy solution, as each individual’s case is unique, the clear message is to ensure that you do seek some advice if faced with paying care fees.
The funding advice we have outlined here at TrustedCare can start by basically outlining the care assessment process and what you can expect to claim from the DSS and the local authority. Where it can get quite complicated is where assets, property and joint ownership are concerned – and this may be where you need to bring in some expert help and advice. Although over 70,000 homes are sold each year to meet care fees, there are often ways and means to prevent this. It is an additional distress for an elderly family member to realize that they will have to sell their home, and lose their family inheritance, as a result of needing elderly care.
Ensure that you consult with authoritative sources and beware of rogue financial and property companies that will prey on people in vulnerable positions. Age UK are a great resource for advice on all aspects of funding for care and have very comprehensive fact sheets.
There are a number of independent UK organizations that assist the elderly and carers with crucial financial decisions and solutions in paying for elderly care.
Independent advisers can help you understand the minefield of funding for care fees, ensuring you are claiming the right DSS benefits and the NHS are paying what they should. They can counsel to help protect an elderly parent or relative from losing all their estate in their pursuit of funding for care fees in the UK. Some organizations can also assist with the sale process if this is required. They can help with immediate funds required to cover care fees in the interim whilst a property is sold, and even manage the whole process to the point of arranging maintenance, and house contents valuation and clearance.
There are equity release schemes for homeowners over 55, who have paid off all or most of their mortgage. These can help to supplement cash-flow by turning some of the value of a property into a tax-free cash sum, or an income for life.