The key questions on paying for care

Will I have to sell my home or house to pay for care? Here’s where you can find some answers to questions you may have about funding and benefits in relation to 24 hour live in care.

There are various ways to pay for live-in care services without the need to sell your home. If you wish to stay at home with 24hour live-in care, then any difference between the funding being offered and the charges of the Care Agency will have to be met by the family or other assets, such as a partial equity release from the property. Remember that if you go into a Residential Home the Local Authority will ask for the house to be sold to pay for the Residential Care (or offer you a bridging loan until the sale, at which time you will be asked to pay the money back). Only when the client’s assets fall below the £23,250 threshold will assistance be offered.

Here are two useful links for more information:

What are Personal Budgets and Direct Payment?

These are budgets set-up to manage the receipt of funds and the payments for the care that is required by the client. The budget and payments may be received by somebody acting for the client if the Client is not able to manage their own Care Package, but this would have to be approved, and usually would require a Power of Attorney.

If your home is sold then you will not qualify for funding until the threshold (£23,250) is met, and the value will disappear very quickly. And if full funding is not approved, then a top up arrangement will preserve value in the property for a long time.

These are cash payments given in lieu of community care services you have been assessed as needing, and are intended to give you greater choice in your care.

For further information on Direct Payments, the financial assessment process, and a person’s contribution calculation click here.

How does the process work?

First, the local authority determines how much money you might need, and more importantly, how much they will contribute, and if you want to manage your own money with a personal budget. Once agreed and if you wish to go ahead with a live-in care service, a support plan is put together, setting out your priorities and goals and how we can help meet them. When you agree the  Care Support Plan you start to receive the cash.


The information below is intended to help you find out which benefits you may be entitled to claim. It is not a guide to the benefits themselves. If you are an older person or an adult with a disability, you may qualify for more than one benefit, especially if you have low savings and income. Whilst we do our best to be current with information, we cannot guarantee it is accurate.

You may be able to apply for any of the following benefits in your own right. Click on the links to find out more:

Click the button for more information and help on all benefits and what you may be entitled to:

UK Benefits Adviser

NB: These benefits can also be applied for by adults without disabilities.

Is the money paid directly to me?

The money can be paid to you directly, or to someone of your choice who can help to look after it for you . You will then be in a position to buy-in the care of your choice If you prefer, the local authority’s Care Manager can use your personal budget to arrange the services of your choice.

What can I spend it on?

You are allowed to spend the allocation on any reasonable means of enhancing your wellbeing, this will have been set out in the Support Plan.

The Personal Budgets are to be used to pay for care and help in the home. You can choose who you employ.

The Local Authority will keep a list of Approved Providers who have been vetted. Alternatively all providers are registered with the Care Quality Commission, and their latest report and rating can be checked here.

Anything it can't be used for?

At present, personal budgets are not awarded to people in residential care, but that is under review and could change.

Can you clarify what personal care is?

You are entitled to financial help if you are assessed as requiring personal care:

• Washing and dressing
• Eating and drinking
• Mobilising
• Continence