Which costs more, live-in home care or assisted living? Count the true cost.

By Dr. Cheryl Mathieu Ph.D.

I got a frantic call from “Anne”, she was deeply concerned about her 92 year old father. “Alan” has been living at home alone, and he fell and asked for help. She took him to Urgent Care and nothing was broken, so they went home relieved. Although he could hobble around, he could not easily get food for himself. Anne was really worried about him falling again and getting seriously injured. I discussed care options with Anne to keep him safe, including hiring a caregiver to live with him or moving to an assisted living.

When she heard that full-time live-in care may cost $15,000 a month, she said he couldn’t afford it. Anne wasn’t in a situation where she could provide care herself, but she didn’t think he would be willing to move to assisted living. In the US the average cost for a private room in a specialty assisted living community is $3,670 per month. This was affordable for Alan, but would he be worse off...

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