Average Nursing Home Costs

  • 24 Comments
  • Posted on Apr. 25th, 2010

By Karen P Williams

The average cost of nursing homes varies to such an extreme that it is necessary to break the issue down into subsections. There are nursing homes, residential homes, dual registered homes and specialist Dementia care homes. The four different types cater for different needs and consequently will have different average costs.

Nursing Homes

Nursing homes will have facilities for personal care, but with an added dimension of medical care too. These homes will have their own qualified nurses, which obviously pushes the price up. Studies have been conducted to suggest what the average costs are for nursing homes. For a standard nursing home privately it would cost around $36,000 dollars annually. For partially private, it would be a little less, but still significantly pricey. There are nursing homes available which are at least partially state funded, but they are available only to those who truly cannot afford to pay for their own assisted living costs.

Residential Homes

Residential homes are a type of nursing home where personal care is provided, but without the need for expensive medical treatments. In these homes the costs are slightly less, but as they provide round the clock care, they are still expensive. Dependent on the area you live and the type of home you choose, the costs can be up to $75,000 per year. This is a significant impact on even well established retirement funds. Medicare or Medicaid will only be able to offer you so much assistance, and you must therefore assume that you will be paying the majority of these costs yourself.

Dual Registered Homes

Dual registered homes are designed for elderly couples who want to stay together, but have different levels of medical needs. These establishments will often have a set number of beds which are marked as ‘residential’ and a set number for ‘nursing’. These are more complex to run, and must provide two levels of care, which does impact on price. However, it is difficult to get an ‘average’ for these kinds of establishments, as the costs will vary depending on the needs of the couple in question. Again, the costs will also vary depending on whether you are in private or partially private care.

Dementia Care Homes

The final type of nursing home I will cover is the dementia specific care home. These homes specialize in the care of people who have mental rather than physical impairment. This can include dementia, Alzheimer’s and a variety of other mental conditions. These establishments are quite expensive to run due to the level of care needed to ensure that the patients are monitored at all times. Due to the nature of these conditions, it is more likely that you can get state help. They should be able to perform an assessment on your relative to see if you are entitled to help in the costs of their care. The average costs of this care vary, but in the UK the average is around £25,000. In the US the figures are similar at around $50,000.

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  • 24 Comments... Add your opinion!
  1. On Apr. 25 2010 @ 1:42 pm ElderMentor said

    Hmm…while costs will certainly vary state to state, I’m thinking these numbers are off somewhat. Was this piece meant to price facilities in the U.S.?

    I work in long term care in NY state and I can tell you that in my neck of the woods (upstate), it currently costs about $300 a day for a semi private room in a skilled long term nursing home. This is the highest level of care; with 24/7 nursing staff and custodial care provisions. That comes out to around $90,000 a year. Assisted living facilities, which in NY, are considered lower level of care (some nursing staff, but not as much emphasis on the medical aspects of care) run at around $100 per day, so about $2800/month and therefore around $30, 000 a year.

    I’m not totally sure what dementia care facilities are charging in this part of NY these days, but they are usually still considered assisted living level, meaning the resident may be in any stage of Alzheimer’s or dementia, so long as he or she is still fairly independent in their mobility and ADL’s. Those memory care assisted living facilities are more expensive than regular assisted living ones, as the care is more specialized.

    If I’m reading this post correctly, you have it listed that lower level care facilities, or “Residential Homes” charge *more* than nursing homes which provide skilled care and medical care. That can’t be accurate, no matter where one is in the US.

    In any case, nursing home care is a HUGE cost and the sad part is, people are hardly prepared to deal with this until they’re forced to make a decision. And often, it’s already too late.

    reply to this comment
  2. On Apr. 25 2010 @ 11:19 pm Dennis said

    Hmm…while costs will certainly vary state to state, I’m thinking these numbers are off somewhat. Was this piece meant to price facilities in the U.S.?

    I work in long term care in NY state and I can tell you that in my neck of the woods (upstate), it currently costs about $300 a day for a semi private room in a skilled long term nursing home. This is the highest level of care; with 24/7 nursing staff and custodial care provisions. That comes out to around $90,000 a year. Assisted living facilities, which in NY, are considered lower level of care (some nursing staff, but not as much emphasis on the medical aspects of care) run at around $100 per day, so about $2800/month and therefore around $30, 000 a year.

    I’m not totally sure what dementia care facilities are charging in this part of NY these days, but they are usually still considered assisted living level, meaning the resident may be in any stage of Alzheimer’s or dementia, so long as he or she is still fairly independent in their mobility and ADL’s. Those memory care assisted living facilities are more expensive than regular assisted living ones, as the care is more specialized.

    If I’m reading this post correctly, you have it listed that lower level care facilities, or “Residential Homes” charge *more* than nursing homes which provide skilled care and medical care. That can’t be accurate, no matter where one is in the US.

    In any case, nursing home care is a HUGE cost and the sad part is, people are hardly prepared to deal with this until they’re forced to make a decision. And often, it’s already too late.

    reply to this comment
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  4. On Apr. 26 2010 @ 10:23 am Mimi Michalski said

    I agree with the first commenter – prices here in New Jersey for long term nursing home care are in the $90k range. Basically they’re between $7000 and $8000 a month if you are paying privately. If you are able to get your elder on Medicaid by spending down whatever money they have left, then Medicaid will cover most of the cost except for personal expenses like haircuts and whatnot. The cost is untenable unless you are very well-to-do. Sadly, in-home care 24/7 is not fully covered on Medicaid so unless you are rich and can afford it, you are almost forced to put your loved one in a nursing home instead of keeping him or her at home. Full time in-home care costs about as much as the nursing home if you go through an agency. Of course you can hire privately and spend less but then you don’t know what you’re getting. It’s a real conundrum.

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  8. On Jul. 1 2010 @ 9:43 am Chris Rivard said

    In Minnesota, nursing home monthly costs range from $4,100 to $11,160. The average cost per person is $6,000/Mo. In Minnesota assisted Living Facilities, rents can range from $1,500 to $3,000/Mo. Almost always, residents pay for additional personal services that increase the cost to $3,000 to $7,500/Mo.
    As a home health care agency for seniors, we appreciate this blog on the costs of facilities.

    reply to this comment
  9. On Aug. 15 2010 @ 8:27 am buy my house said

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  10. On Sep. 2 2010 @ 5:32 am internet marketing nottingham said

    All over I think nursing home care is a HUGE cost and the sad part is, people are hardly prepared to deal with this until they’re forced to make a decision. And often, it’s already too late.
    But there is another option, an affordable one, home care business, have you considered these ones too?

    reply to this comment
  11. On Nov. 14 2010 @ 7:24 pm global life and accident insurance company said

    If more people were better informed regarding the costs of elder care, it would be a tremendous help when the time comes for them to make the move.

    reply to this comment
  12. On Dec. 2 2010 @ 10:44 pm Allison said

    The costs are really staggering. I think some kind of home health care would be a better option for when it’s still realistic. Save while you can and allow them to live at home comfortably.

    reply to this comment
  13. On Mar. 12 2011 @ 5:00 am Margo Arrowsmith said

    I was astounded at the cost a a decent assisted living place. A tiny little room, with meals and it would have been about what you talk about. The problem was that only Mom needed it, Dad was taking care of her, and he needed to know that Mom would be safe when he went to the store. However, they were going to charge double for the same room if he moved in with her. AND since she needed care, they added charges to that, even though Dad would still have been doing all of her care.

    The kicker was that when their money ran out, and it would have been less than two years, they would have to leave and find something else. That probably would have been home with me and there would have been no money at all to hire help.

    Then the guy actually said that the mistake most people made was that they didn’t move to these places until they needed them!

    reply to this comment
  14. On Mar. 12 2011 @ 5:03 am Margo Arrowsmith said

    I agree! I wrote a post that is just below yours, but will repeat the two most important points. 1. When the money runs out, they are sent back home anyway, with no money to hire help or a medicaid home, which are very hard to find in any condition.

    2. The guy, after explaining that they would be discharged when their money ran out actually said that the ‘mistake’ most people make is that they wait until they need assisted living before coming to them’. He thought they should move in when they could take care of themselves, so they would already be there when they couldn’t.

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