Live-in Care or Care Home?​

Understanding the benefits of having live in care at home vs residential care home

Why choose live in care at home?

If you need full-time, around the clock care, there are two main choices: moving into a residential or nursing home, or staying at home with live-in care.

With live-in homecare, you live in your own home, a carer who we ensure you know and like comes and lives with you enabling you to continue to live your life the way you want to.

Your carer is available to help you 24/7 with everything from cooking and cleaning to personal care, house admin, enabling you to go out or have friends over and helping with more complex care should you need it like stoma care, safe moving and handling, support during illness etc (care that you would usually expect only to be available in a nursing home).

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What causes someone to decide they need full-time care?​

What causes someone to decide they need full-time care?

This study uses a combination of research from the Personal Social Services Research Unit at the University of Kent and LSE, the recent Care home market study by the Competition and Markets Authority, information gathered by the Live-in Care Hub and other academic publications to examine the choices someone makes when choosing full-time care.

Although having full-time care is one of the biggest decisions someone will make in their life, full time care is rarely planned – an optimistic survey by Ipsos MORI found that only 27% of the population had planned how they would fund potential care. Most people don’t have full-time care until they need it. When they do need it, 97% of people say they would prefer to stay living in their own home.

People usually need full-time care quite urgently, and the need is usually unexpected. Choosing care is then often made in a ‘crisis’ without the time for full and proper consideration. Common reasons include gradual decline in health reaching a ‘tipping point’; a family emergency; the illness of a family carer; a fall or a hospital visit. Many people don’t know that live-in care is an option and so they put off going to a care or nursing home for as long as possible.

How do people choose full time care?

1. Word of mouth

The most helpful of all resources to shortlist care options is word of mouth, asking friends and families for their advice or experience of choosing care. Just as with finding a plumber or a builder, word of mouth reassures people in a world of opaque costs, little information to help choose, and an urgent need. People trust their advisors and follow their recommendations.

2. Distance from Home

People want to stay close to friends and family. Obviously, if you opt for live in home care you can stay in your own home so there is no need to worry about losing touch with friends, family and neighbours.

3. Value for Money and Quality of Life

Recent research by the PRSSU shows that the average cost of live-in care for a managed service and regulated model, for someone with dementia, who otherwise would be in a nursing home is £1,080 a week. This puts live-in care on a par with many care and nursing home fees, especially in the South East and London.

More than 50% homes do not allow people to keep their pets.

With live-in care you do not need to be parted from your much loved pets, they can continue to give you great pleasure and your carer will help look after them.

More than a quarter of homes don’t let someone go for a walk outside the grounds. You are not able to go out, even if you are physically well enough to go for a walk. Many of the others have to arrange a time to have an escort (in case you get lost) and often this comes at an extra cost.

With live-in care the freedom is yours to go for a walk wherever you want, whenever you want. You are able to live as independently as you choose, be it a visit to friends, a pub lunch or a favourite walk.

The average price of a care home is around £893 per week with more than a third charging over £1000 per week.

With live in care costs start at £1,150 per week and the value is immense, offering you peace of mind as well as dignity and control, freedom and choice. You can enjoy companionship, continuity of care and plenty of freedom to continue to enjoy your life with your family, friends and pets around you in the home and garden you know and love

4. Cleanliness, friendliness and homeliness

Everyone wants to live somewhere which feels like home, not just an institution. You may feel that your home is becoming too much for you to manage but...

...with live in homecare your carer is there to help you with everyday household tasks to keep your home clean and tidy. You can avoid the distress and disruption of leaving everything you know to move in to a care home and instead, feel happy and safe with the comforting presence of a live-in carer in your own home.

5. Staffing

People want to know if there are enough staff to take care of people, and are they trained in the right way? In a care or nursing home, there will be plenty of staff. However, in many homes, staff have an allocated amount of time they can spend 1:1 with residents which is rarely more than 3 hours 1:1 per day.

With live in care you are guaranteed 1:1 care around the clock. Your carer is there for you and you only. One on one care greatly reduces your chance of suffering a fall when compared with frequency of falls in care homes.

This information is given to help you make a considered choice about whether to have live-in care or to go to a nursing or residential home.

If you are unsure, speak to us about booking an interim care trial, a 4-6 week care package so that you can try live in care for yourself without a long term commitment. 

For more information on how our home care services can help you: