Moving into residential care is essentially a move to a new home. Even though this is not a home you are buying, if you think about it in terms of a property transaction it might help you to build a checklist to make the right choice.
When you last bought (or rented) a home, you probably did not start your research by looking for the cheapest option, but rather you began by thinking about where you wanted to live and what sort of lifestyle you wanted. This is also a great place to start when choosing residential aged care.
Step 1 - create a wish list of the things that are important to you about where you live and how you live including location, accommodation style, amenities and social activities.
Step 2 – identify services in your preferred location. You might be able to start with local knowledge and ask friends for recommendations or do a simple internet search for “residential aged care in [area name]”. The Government’s MyAgedCare website (myagedcare.gov.au) also has a search function to start you off.
Step 3 – create a shortlist of suitable services and make contact to see if you can arrange a visit to have a look around.
Step 4 – ask lots of questions. When taking a tour of potential services ask lots of questions about staff ratios and roles. Look for signs that indicate the staff aim to make it feel like home (such as personal items on display) and watch how staff interact with residents. Ask to look at the activity schedule and ask questions about how social interaction is encouraged.
Step 5 – check the costs for the room and additional services and do a reality check to see if it is affordable. This is where you might need advice from a qualified financial planner to ensure you are able to afford the room long term and to identify areas in which your funding structure can be improved.
If you need help with understanding your fees and improving your financial position with aged care, call us on 07 56 667 223 to book an appointment to discuss your situation.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION: The information is of a general nature only and has been prepared without consideration of your individual objectives, financial situation or needs. Before making any decisions, you should consider the appropriateness for your personal investment objectives, financial situation or individual needs. We recommend you see a financial adviser, registered tax agent or legal adviser before making any decisions based on this information. Current at 23 June 2023.