Everything You Need to Know About the Cost of In-Home Care

In this article...
  • Discover the costs associated with in-home care and find out about what differentiates this level of elder care from home health care and assisted living.

Most older adults prefer to remain in their homes in familiar surroundings. Just because they help with daily activities such as transportation, dressing, grooming, meal preparation and cleaning, it doesn't automatically mean it's time to pack up and go to a nursing home. Seniors can opt for a caregiver to come into their home and provide assistance. Read on to find out more about the different types of in-home care and the associated costs.  

What Is In-Home Care?

Aging can be stressful, making remaining at home a priority for many individuals who don't want to give up their independence.

Home care is when a caregiver comes to an older adult's property to provide them with support. This can be particularly important for seniors who don't have friends and families living close by or who don't have the spare time to provide the care they need. Assistance includes:

  • Companionship
  • Meal preparation
  • Transportation
  • Grooming, bathing and toileting
  • Cleaning
  • Financial management

Home health care is for people who require additional medical attention, such as:

  • Physical or occupational therapy
  • Medical tests
  • Administration of medication
  • Wound care
  • Health monitoring

Fragile seniors might struggle to get to a hospital or doctor's office regularly, and home health care lets them get the support they need while remaining at home. 

This guide will focus on the costs of home care, which is the primary modality necessary for many individuals. Home health care is usually required after a hospital stay or rehabilitation, although some people need it around the clock.

Both options are significantly cheaper than living in a nursing home, but assisted living often costs around the same. Home care correlates loosely to the level of service available in an assisted living facility, whereas home health care is more conducive to a nursing care home. 

How Much Does In-Home Care Cost Per Hour?

According to Genworth's 2020 Cost of Care Survey, the average cost of home care across the United States is $4,481. This works out as around $149 per day, or approximately $19 per hour, based on an 8-hour day. Bear in mind that this figure varies significantly between states. Below, we've included a table that shows the average cost of in-home care in each state.  

Does Medicare Cover Home Care?

Unless there's a medical reason for home care, Medicare is unlikely to contribute to the costs. This means that home health care tends to fall under insurance policies while home care doesn't. The government has created this resource for seniors and their families who are looking for Medicare-certified elder care.

How Much Does Medicare Pay for Home Health?

To qualify for Medicare-covered home health care, the applicant must be homebound and have a skilled medical need diagnosed by an MD. A skilled nurse or physical therapist might cost approximately $80 per hour, with Medicare covering the costs in 90% of cases. 

Home Care vs. Assisted Living Homes

While many older adults are tentative about leaving their homes, joining a vibrant community of seniors can be a wonderful experience. There are always plenty of people to socialize with, and you don't need to worry about chores, transport or cooking. It's also a similar price to home care, although on average, it usually costs a little less. The national average price of assisted living is $4,300 per month, compared to $4,481 for home care. 

Average Cost of In-Home Care By State

State

Average Cost of In-Home Care

Alabama

$3,432

Alaska

$5,339

Arizona

$4,934

Arkansas

$3,813

California

$5,529

Colorado

$5,339

Connecticut

$4,576

Delaware

$4,767

Florida

$4,195

Georgia

$4,004

Hawaii

$5,339

Idaho

$4,481

Illinois

$4,767

Indiana

$4,385

Iowa

$4,767

Kansas

$4,147

Kentucky 

$4,052

Louisiana

$3,241

Maine

$5,339

Maryland

$4,576

Massachusetts

$5,529

Michigan

$4,576

Minnesota

$5,863

Mississippi

$3,432

Missouri

$4,372

Montana 

$5,138

Nebraska

$4,862

Nevada 

$4,576

New Hampshire

$5,434

New Jersey

$4,957

New Mexico

$4,290

New York

$4,814

North Carolina

$3,813

North Dakota

$5,335

Ohio

$4,481

Oklahoma

$4,385

Oregon

$5,472

Pennsylvania

$4,576

Rhode Island

$5,529

South Carolina

$4,076

South Dakota

$5,339

Tennessee

$3,909

Texas

$4,195

Utah

$4,814

Vermont

$5,434

Virginia

$4,195

Washington

$5,941

West Virginia

$3,527

Wisconsin

$4,957

Wyoming

$5,362