For some seniors, financial support can be found within the networks of a family tree amongst children, grandchildren, and loved ones. Nonetheless, there are still many seniors who continue to live independently from others, using their savings or retirement income to financially support themselves.
However, it seems to be the case that a growing number of seniors are running into debt. According to a 2013 CNN Money report, the “average debt held by senior citizens has ballooned to $50,000 in 2010, up 83% since 2001” and many more seniors are relying on credit cards to finance their expenses, without having enough income to supplement the debt.
With senior citizens on a budget to support themselves, how would they be able to afford personal care as they grow a need for assistance in their daily living activities?
In-home care: An affordable option
In-home care is probably one of the best options for seniors living on a tight budget and in need of personal care. Not only is home care more affordable than, for example, assisted living facilities, but they are also more financially flexible. With an in-home care provider, seniors are able to request care for a short period of time each day, receiving and paying for assistance when they need it the most.
Of course, free help from family and friends is the most cost-effective option for in-home senior assistance. However, when these individuals may be unavailable, in-home care provides an option for care that may be workable within a budget.
What can a home care agency do to support a tight budget?
A home care agency providing services to someone on a tight budget can do a lot to support the individual. Not only can an agency refer the individual to programs that can assist with paying for care, but they can also use their home care software or home care system to keep track of the senior’s services in a way that supports the senior’s budget.
For example, an individual on a budget might be seeking very specific services for themselves. They would avoid requesting services that are not needed, and that also might potentially cost more. With a home care software or home care system, care providers would be able to log and keep track of requested services on a client-by-client basis on one easy-to-use and accessible platform.
Additionally, if an agency has negotiated a price that differs from their standard price of care, they would be able to record the agreed price in their home care software or home care system and ensure that any services requested by that individual are always charged at the negotiated rate.
Not only that, but an agency would also be able to use their home care software or home care system to help their elderly clients stay within their weekly budgets. For example, an agency can easily find the total number of requested hours for a week with a home care system and make sure that the client is not requesting services that may exceed what they can afford.
And if that isn’t enough, an agency can also help a client manage their own budget by giving them access to their requested schedule online. Given that the client has access to the internet, the senior would be able to use the capabilities of a home care software system to view their requested hours and make sure that they are staying within budget.