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Does your loved one with dementia want to keep living in their own home? Here’s why more families are choosing to hire a professional carer

1. It’s flexible – you only pay for what you need

If the person you care about only needs a little extra support or companionship, that’s all you need pay for. You can arrange for a professional carer to visit them at pre-arranged times and days – and pay by the hour. Or perhaps you only want them at weekends or during the night – this can be arranged too. You can also book short term home care, if you’re going on holiday for instance or if you just need a break.

Did you know?

If you don’t live with the person you care about, some organisations will notify you (via GPS alerts) when the carer arrives at your loved one’s home and when they leave, just to provide extra assurance.

2. It’s person centred

Most people living with dementia want to continue to be as independent as possible. Home care allows them to do exactly that – it’s tailor made to suit their needs. Whether a professional home carer visits them for a couple of hours a week, stays for a few days or lives with them permanently, their job is to ensure that the person you love continues to live their best life possible.

3. You can remain in control

If you or the person with dementia wants to interview and personally select your own home carers, you can. Some of the newer home care organisations offer an ‘introductory service’ which allows you to choose your own carer from a list of carefully vetted DBS checked, people in your area. You can then set up your own interviews in your own time, check references yourself and negotiate your own rates of pay. This is a particularly affordable option if you’re working to a budget.

4. …or you can get someone else to do the leg work

If setting up interviews and discussing payments sounds daunting – or just too time-consuming – there are many other home care organisations that will do all of it for you. If you chose this route, the carer you hire will be employed by the agency, not by you, so you won’t have to deal with any awkward question about money, holidays or sickness.

5. It might not be as expensive as you think

Home care – especially live-in care – used to be an option only wealthy people with large houses could afford. This is no longer true. While you will need to have a spare bedroom if you’re considering live-in care, even a permanent live-in carer probably doesn’t cost as much as you might think. Prices start at around £750 per week for this type of care, the average care home costs around £650 per week (although this varies widely depending on what area you live in) and nursing care can cost a lot more.

6. You could qualify for financial help

Have you looked into Personal Budgets? Some people find they can get financial assistance to help them pay for their care from their Local Authority via something called a Personal Budget. If the person you care about qualifies for a Personal Budget, they can choose whether to spend it on home care – they can choose their own carer or personal assistant – or on care home fees.

7. There is lots of choice

Not long ago, the only choice most people had if they wanted to receive home care was through a traditional agency. Now far more choices are available and as competition in the sector grows, prices are falling.