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Elderly Care cost and Finances

For many people and their families considering care options, the financial implications and the on going cost of care can be a major worry and concern . Looking after a loved one in the right way should be about their individual needs being met and, crucially, quality of life.

Cost of Care

When looking at care costs, making comparisons to the type of care you or your loved one will receive is vitally important. You should weigh up the outcomes of care, beyond simply providing tasks, to considering the person’s safety, their need for companionship, assistance with hobbies and taking into account shared interests. Care is not something that should be ‘done to you’ but something that is in place to enhance a person’s enjoyment of life. We have home support in addition to home care services including grief and loss/bereavement advice, symptom management and alleviation of pain for the patient. As well as emotional support to the patient and their family.

Care at home cost vs. Old Age Villages

Many people face a choice between whether their loved one can stay at home or may need to go into a residential old age village. It is important at these times to understand that it can be possible to provide the level of care a person needs while allowing them to stay in their own home.

This is often less upsetting and is better for the person’s mental wellbeing as moving out of their homes can be stressful and confusing for some people. While the choice of care for a loved one should not be made solely on financial grounds, there is often a financial benefit of choosing home care compared to moving into a residential old age home full time.

We have written a more in-depth comparison of the cost of Residential old age homes compared to home care to provide you with information to help you make an informed choice.

Many retirees may be surprised to discover that the cost of a home in a retirement village is out of their reach and the sale of their existing home might not be enough to afford retirement accommodation.

Options include basic old age or nursing homes, home-based care and retirement villages. Retirement villages, if one can afford it, are a popular choice among retirees and provide facilities, essential services, amenities and maintenance that allow residents to enjoy security and a sustained quality of life in a friendly community.

Home-based care in a retirement village is supplemented by primary health care and frail care.

“With a large lump sum in retirement you can obtain life rights (from R1.3 million), a 99-year lease (from R2.8 million), or sectional or full titles from R2.3 to R3.2 million in a retirement village,” the 2017 Alexander Forbes Benefits Barometer said.

“Life rights terminate on the death of the holder. Some retirement villages also offer rental schemes and according to Just research it may then require more than R8 million to cover essential expenses for life in an upmarket retirement village, depending on your gender and age,” * Twané Wessels, product actuary at Just Retirement

Essential expenditure per person per month

Research showed what monthly essential expenditure for various accommodation options in retirement will amount to based on monthly rent, and how these expenses will increase from year to year. Monthly expenses are shown below for a basic old age home, a middle-market and an upmarket retirement village.

These expenses typically increase annually by approximately 3% more than inflation.

Frail care includes 24-hour nursing and may be needed for dementia sufferers, for example. Dementia results in memory loss, impaired communication skills and an inability to make simple decisions. The increase in dementia highlights the need to make the right provisions in retirement.

For one retiree, monthly expenditure in an upmarket retirement village with frail care can be approximately R59,250 per month.

*Medical aid included in the upmarket retirement village analysis is assumed to be a comprehensive plan. For the others, a hospital plan instead of a comprehensive plan has been assumed.

*2017  research