4 Tips to Pay for Assisted Living Costs

By Marie Villeza

Whether due to illness, disability, age, or simply the desire for a change of pace, for many seniors there comes a day when they realize it’s time to leave their long-time home behind for a care facility. And often, the option of moving to an assisted living facility is ideal, except for one small detail–paying for it.

However, there are several ways you can obtain the necessary funds to pay for care in an assisted living facility without having to take out substantial loans or rely on financial assistance from family members or loved ones. Here are a few ideas to take the guesswork out of paying for assisted living:

Get some compensation for downsizing. One of the perks (or perhaps curses, for some people) of moving into an assisted living facility is being able to unload some of the big items you will no longer need, as well as any clutter that may have accumulated over the years. The best part is that you can bring in extra money to put toward your new living arrangements through the sale of many of these items. Homeowners who put their property on the market are in an especially good position to make a profit that can be instrumental in helping to pay for assisted living facility services. This article offers tips on how to make your home irresistible to home buyers so it will sell quickly. If the thought of going through your possessions feels daunting and you aren’t sure where to begin, this guide explains how to sort through your items and decide what to sell.

Utilize any veterans benefits you may be eligible for. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) offers a variety of financial assistance programs to those who served in the armed forces. Many individuals and their spouses qualify for funds during their golden years, some of which are specifically meant for assisted living expenses. This resource provides helpful information on what veterans may qualify for depending on when and for how long they served in the United States military.

Most states offer partial assistance to individuals residing in assisted living facilities. In fact, 45 of 50 do! However, each state has its own rules, regulations and requirements, and many differ on what qualifies as assisted living care. This guide breaks down information state by state, and provides links to each state’s government page should you require additional information or wish to file an application for a state program.

Consider applying for long-term care insurance. Nowadays, there are many plans that can help cover the cost of assisted living care, which are similar in fashion to traditional health insurance policies. This article explains how long-term care insurance may be beneficial for some individuals. Like any kind of insurance plan, this type of coverage isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. Be sure to do your research and compare plans before committing. The facility you are looking to move into also may have recommendations on how much coverage you’ll need.

Whether the transition into an assisted living care facility is a quick decision or a plan you’ve had for many years, figuring out a way to pay for it shouldn’t be a source of stress. There are many options available to you that won’t cause financial hardship. Knowing you’ll be able to pay for your new living arrangements will allow you to focus on what an exciting time this new beginning should actually be for you.

Marie Villeza was inspired to start ElderImpact.org after she watched her son teach her father how to play Angry Birds™ on his smartphone. In that moment, she realized the importance of bringing the generations together so they can usher each other into the future, breaking down walls of fear and time. In her free time, she enjoys gardening, hiking, and taking part in her monthly book club.