Alternatives to going to live in a care home

I will keep adding to this- contributions most welcome from all regions or countries. I will have  a look at all UK regions eg Scotland.


Nursing and personal care is free in Scotland for those over 65 years of age (paid for by the Government—!) ( Need to check if  a person has to have lived in Scotland for so many years prior in order to receive this . Be interesting to analyses the possible effect on this? Do people have more of an option to remin in their own home than they do in England? Assessment is done by the Local Authority. Some care at home must be paid for such as shopping, but some services are free (ibid).

Northern Ireland

As it stands now (2015) – similar to England


Similar to England

Alternatives to going in a care home;

Before 7 years make a gift of home to offspring. Many solicitors will not do this- they regard it as fraud.
Go in a granny annex at your offspring’s house if social services allow it.
Find an agency and invite a student to live with you- in return he or she cares for you so many hours a day.Murphy (2012)
Advertise for a live in carer , or visitor or carer but check their credentials !
Some agencies do offer live-in carers for a fee!!
Age UK will provide carers for an hourly fee
Age UK will provide round the clock care- if you bequest them your property.

Charities will advise besides Age UK- there are others. They may even offer grants (see below- Help the Heroes).
Ask people in the community to shop for you.
Refuse to go- they may label you as “lacking mental capacity”.

Relatives- if you support their “fight” to remain in their own home or at your home, you may be banned from being involved or even visiting them.
Go to cheaper care overseas (Dimon 2014 Hasta La Vista Gran ). .
Live with a friend.
Join a commune.
Become a nun or charity body member.
Live in a hotel- one couple did this Will regulations eventually prohibit this? (2007)

A positive example- a war veteran , petition signed, has a grant from Help the Heroes for a live in carer –
This is short term so the council have offered to pay for care with payment being taken from the eventual sale of his house

A charity in Ireland called ALONE has undertaken a report regarding this issue “The charity Alone, which provides services for older people in need, has said that a third of people currently in nursing homes could live at home if they were supported to do so” ( .”Instead of spending €1,600 a week on a nursing home, maybe some of that money could be drawn down to purchase services in your own home for €500 or €600, he said” (ibid),   EINnews

Has been focus on retirement villages for some time but here it is again (ack Strength in Numbers). Consider eg Joseph Rowntree UK.

Also sheltered housing such as Anchor.

Yes we will always need care homes but please, only when absolutely essential.

LA/politicians remember- community care is far cheaper than care in care homes. Are we simply supporting businesses?
Yes- many love living in care homes but it does not suit the majority.

Some people it does suit

This is not all about being able to leave your property to your family- technically you do not own it yourself  anyway- the Government do. It is about quality of life- you should be cared for where you want to be cared for and in the manner in which you wish to be cared for.


15 thoughts on “Alternatives to going to live in a care home

  1. Dear Leninnightingale
    I am intrigued by the point you make about the Government ownership of property. Could you please expand on this as I know that in the case of fracking homeowners cannot prevent drilling because the Crown owns the land beneath the property where you have your home.
    Is this the issue of “tenant” I have seen in references to deeds and title? So if we all hold property by courtesy of the State/Crown, then why do we “own” houses at all, and why does not the state provide equal access and fairness to everyone if they are the ultimate owners and everything is basically on lease?
    I am not a lawyer and this is pure speculation on my part.
    Best wishes

  2. Thanks Rosemary. There is a brilliant article about this from somebody somwhere – if anybody can locate for us? Yes you are quite right about the links to the crown- and fracking!! Many historical deeds are strangely missing—.
    I would not advise anybody to own their own house- lest it becomes a contribution towards the profit of private equity groups who own care homes.

  3. Restrict the amount the government can take from your property, couples make and register yourselves as Tenants in Common. (you have to survive for 7 years) A solicitor will draw this up for you and register it at The Land Registry.
    At the same time draw up wills stating that you make no provision for your other half and your wills are independent. (You still own half the property as well as being Tenants in Common) You bequest the property to whoever you want with your other half being ‘in trust’ This way the other ‘tenant’ continues to live in the home for their life time. Your home cannot be sold to pay fees as long as the other ‘tenant’ lives there.
    In Financial assessments this has to be taken into account when assessing for funding.

    • It is the mining/mineral/gas/oil rights that the government can access. The land immediately beneath a house belongs to the home owner if freehold and the land owner if it is leasehold.

  4. Lenin speaks- cooperative community care;
    4 old people pay £200 a week each. Could it be on a par with “fostering” ?
    One home. No need to register if 4 beds.
    4 staff , some sleep overs.
    Residential, Can also have community volunteers.
    Done in the Philipines.
    why send old people over to the Philippines, when it can be done here? ??

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