Planning for the Future
When planning a move into aged care for yourself or a loved one, there are a number of questions that need to be taken into consideration:
- What are my options for assisted living?
- What type of facility should I choose?
- What are the costs?
- What do I do with the existing family home?
Often these decisions need to be made in a hurry, causing additional stress at an already emotional time. Planning ahead and understanding all the issues around aged care can give you comfort around the decisions you make and ensure you manage the financial impact of this transition.
What are the options for assisted living?
The Australian aged care system provides a range of care options including community aged care and residential aged care. However, prior to making this move, it is necessary for the resident to undergo an assessment of their physical and mental ability by the Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT).
This assessment generally occurs following the referral of a general practitioner.
What type of facility should I choose?
Residential aged care is provided at either low level or high level of care. The level of care required will be determined by the residents ACAT assessment.
What is the difference?
Low level care (previously referred to as hostels)
- Self-contained accommodation with some communal facilities;
- Support facilities, including meals, cleaning and personal care.
High level care (commonly known as nursing homes)
- Purpose-built residence with access to 24 hour nursing care;
- Accommodation catering to situations where it is no longer possible for the individual to look after themselves due to illness or disability.
What are the Costs?
The government can provide substantial assistance with the cost of aged care. However, this can be a complex area as the way a resident’s assets and income is structured will have a direct impact on the amount of fees that they will pay when entering a facility and for ongoing fees or bonds.
Types of feeds include:
Basic daily fee – as a contribution toward accommodation and costs of daily living;
Income tested fee – as a contribution towards the cost of care which is based on the level of a person’s income;
Accommodation payment – as a contribution towards capital accommodation costs, such as an accommodation bond for low level care or accommodation charge for high level care;
Extra service fees – where extra services apply to residents occupying extra service places for the provisions of a higher standard of accommodation services and food.
What to do with the existing home
The decision you make regarding the family home can significantly impact the resident’s age pension or Department of Veterans Affairs entitlements.
It is recommended that you seek professional financial advice before making the decision to sell the family home.
MGR's Financial Services Division, 360 Private Wealth, is able to provide quality advice to assist you in solving all of the above questions.
To help you navigate the confusing and sometimes scary transition to aged care for yourself or a loved one, we can offer a comprehensive aged care statement of advice. Or if you are seeking guidance through the various steps of applying for an aged care pension, we can assist with all aspects of an Aged Pension Application.
To make an appointment to speak with one of our qualified financial advisers on aged care, please contact us today.