Paying for Assisted Living Financial Aid Options and Important Advice

Paying for Assisted Living: Financial Aid Options and Important Advice

If you’re stressed about retirement, you’re not alone. 80% of seniors say they do not have the finances to start paying for assisted living or a nursing home. Luckily, financial aid programs can cover a portion of the cost. Older adults who do not qualify for financial aid have additional options, which we will discuss below. How much is senior living, and can financial aid for assisted living help cover the cost? We will answer these questions and many more in this guide, so keep reading to find out.

How Much Does Assisted Living Cost?

The cost of assisted living varies depending on multiple factors, including your location, but the national median is $4,500 per month. That equals around $148 per day or $54,000 annually. This cost breaks down into the one-time move-in fee, the cost of rent, and the price for any services you may need. Flat fees typically range from $1,000 to $5,000. Some communities offer the option to pay this fee over time. What you will pay in rent depends on the community. The good news is that Florida assisted living communities tend to charge lower rent than senior homes in other states. Some older adults need assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs).

There are six instrumental ADLS and six basic ADLs, the latter of which include:

  • The ability to move and walk independently
  • The ability to feed oneself
  • The ability to get dressed
  • The ability to care for one’s personal hygiene
  • The ability to control the bladder and bowels
  • The ability to use the toilet effectively

These services may be included in the cost of rent and stay the same, regardless of how many services you need. Or your community may itemize these services and charge you based on the number you use.

What Type of Financial Aid Is Available for Paying for Assisted Living?

There are two main types of financial aid programs available for assisted living residents. They are veterans’ and state-sponsored assistance programs. Learn more about each of these and how to qualify below.

Veterans’ Programs

The Department of Veteran Affairs, also known as the VA, provides retirement benefits for retired military persons. The VA may not cover the full cost of assisted living. However, using these programs can significantly lower the cost of certain assisted living services. To access these benefits, you must be enrolled in a VA health care policy. Additionally, the VA must determine if the service(s) is required for your health or personal care. Another way the VA can help you afford the cost of senior living is through the Aid and Attendance benefit. Qualifying military veterans can access $2,600 or more in tax-free income, which they can put toward assisted living.

State-Sponsored Assistance

Some US states offer financial aid for older adults. The exact benefits offered and eligibility criteria vary depending on the state and the program. In Florida, the Optional State Supplementation (OSS) program falls into this category. Low-income adults over the age of 65 can qualify for assistance with assisted living costs. If you meet the income criteria ($992.40 for individuals and $1,911.80 for couples), you can apply for the program. A case manager will review your eligibility, which is determined by your need for assistance with ADLs. Older adults who qualify can receive funds monthly to help lower the cost of retirement living. The exact amount you can qualify for depends on whether you are single or married and what type of retirement community you live in.

Other Options for Paying for Senior Living

Unfortunately, not everyone can qualify for the types of financial aid we mentioned above. In that case, you have other options. Some of the top alternatives retirees turn to for assisted living funding are:

  • Using personal savings from assets, 401ks, or other investments
  • Taking out a reverse mortgage or selling your home
  • Tapping into long-term care or life insurance savings
  • Getting a bridge loan to cover costs until other funds are freed up

It may also help to know that you can access tax deductions for senior living. For example, the IRS allows eligible older adults to deduct specific medical expenses when they cost 7.5% or more than their adjusted gross income (AGI). Do you still need help finding ways to afford the cost of senior living? Inspired Living partners with experts at ElderLife Financial and to help you find the best solution for your needs. Learn more about how we can help in this guide.

How to Find Affordable Senior Living Options

Despite having access to Social Security and other funding options, many older adults still worry about paying for senior living. That’s why one of the best strategies is to find a community that suits your unique budget. One way to do this is to search for options that charge a flat rate. With these communities, you will pay the same amount every month, regardless of how many services you use or how often you need them. Knowing how much you need to budget for rent and services each month can offer peace of mind. Plus, you will know exactly what you can and cannot afford before your official move-in date. At Inspired Living, we balance high-quality services and living facilities with affordable prices. Our goal is to help you retire without the stress of worrying if you can afford to continue living in one of our caring communities.

Inspired Living Is Ready for You to Move In

Paying for assisted living is easy when you use our guide. If you qualify, the VA or your state can help lower the cost of retirement. If you do not qualify for these programs, you still have options, such as leveraging your savings, selling your home, or taking out a bridge loan. No matter which option you choose, Inspired Living is here for you every step of the way. Are you searching for a beautiful assisted living community in Florida, Georgia, or Louisiana? Schedule a tour of one of our facilities today and find out why so many seniors love calling Inspired Living home.