In-Home Dementia Care: Costs, Services & More


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Key Takeaways

  1. The national median cost for in-home dementia care is $30 an hour. Location, care needs, and the caregiver’s level of expertise can affect the price.
  2. In-home dementia care costs include more than the cost of a caregiver. Home modifications for safety and accessibility may become necessary as dementia progresses.
  3. Caring for a loved one with dementia can present physical and emotional challenges. Juggling caregiving duties with personal responsibilities can lead to burnout.
  4. Memory care is an alternative to in-home dementia care. For seniors with dementia who require a high level of supervision, memory care communities are an option.

Factors that impact the costs of dementia care

The cost of in-home dementia care will ultimately depend on where a senior lives, how much care they require, and the caregiver’s level of experience and training.



Where a senior lives can have an effect on the cost of in-home dementia care. Care costs will often follow the cost of living trends for the area they are provided. For instance, in-home dementia care rates are likely to be higher in California than in Mississippi. The national median ($30 per hour) is the figure landing in the middle, with costs of in-home care in half the states falling below and half above.


Amount of care

The amount of care an individual needs can also dictate the cost of in-home care. For example, a full-time caregiver who works the standard 44-hours per week at the median rate of $30 per hour will cost approximately $5,720 per month. The estimated monthly cost for a caregiver who works 15 hours each week is $1,950.


Caregiver training

A caregiver with specialized dementia-care training or certifications may be more expensive. Dementia care requires a unique skill set and extra training, which typically contributes to its higher costs.

Know your loved one’s dementia symptoms, care needs, and expectations before screening home care providers. You should make sure the caregiver you hire has experience caring for individuals living with dementia or is at least recently certified through a dementia care training program.

What services are included in the cost of dementia care?

In-home caregivers who provide care for seniors living with dementia typically offer the following services:

  • Companionship and social stimulation
  • Help with activities of daily living (ADLs) like bathing, dressing, and eating
  • Light housekeeping and laundry
  • Assistance in managing symptoms and de-escalating adverse reactive behaviors
  • Sensory or reminiscence therapy to reduce anxiety and inspire positive memories
  • Supervision while you work, run errands, or spend time with family
  • Engaging at-home activities geared toward the senior’s interests, well-being, and skills

Nearly 77% of seniors want to remain in their homes as long as possible, but dementia can complicate those plans. If your loved one chooses to age in place, in-home care can help keep them safe and engaged.

“Caring for my grandfather is the most meaningful thing I’ve ever done,” says Richard, 34, of Marion, Tennessee. “It’s definitely impacted my life — financially and for my family in general.”

Richard, like many unpaid caregivers, also relies on in-home care and family support to aid his grandfather, who’s aging in his own home several miles away.

“We have a great caregiver come in to help a few hours in the morning with making breakfast, tidying the house, and making sure grandpa gets his medicine and dressed,” Richard says.

He and his wife Lizz spend about $2,000 a month for four hours of care five days a week.


The costs of home modifications and safety

The average cost of home safety modifications is around $9,500, according to Fixr’s 2023 remodeling cost analysis. In the early stages of dementia, basic and inexpensive accommodations, like removing trip hazards, installing grab bars, and leveling thresholds can reduce Alzheimer’s safety risks at home.

As dementia progresses, seniors may experience more mobility difficulties, disorientation, and wandering. Because a fall can result in hospitalization or the need for long-term care, it’s important to take safety precautions in the home as much as possible.

The cost of dementia-related home safety features can increase as the condition progresses. Alarmed windows and doors may be needed to reduce the risks associated with wandering. Appliances with automatic shut-off mechanisms and mobility devices like stair lifts may also be necessary. Nonslip flooring, walk-in tubs or showers, and lever handles are other common changes that contribute to in-home dementia care costs.

“Since grandpa didn’t want to move out of the home he’s been in for over 50 years, we had to make some changes,” Richard says.

He and his wife have spent over $5,000 on home modifications since the diagnosis.

“We know that when things get worse, he won’t be able to live on his own anymore, so we’re also starting to make some changes in our house for whenever grandpa needs to be here,” Richard notes.

Hidden costs of dementia care

While caring for a loved one with dementia may be rewarding, families may also face emotional and financial challenges. More than one in three dementia caregivers report significant emotional stress. One in five express financial or professional stress, according to a National Alliance for Caregiving study.


Emotional and mental health costs of dementia care

Dementia caregivers report more anxiety and depression, higher levels of stress, and lower well-being than noncaregivers. Balancing care for a senior loved one with other responsibilities such as a career, childcare, and personal relationships can lead to caregiver burnout.

Richard and Lizz are part of the sandwich generation, which means that they simultaneously care for an elderly loved one and a child or young adult. Nearly three-quarters of sandwich generation caregivers are employed full-time, and most spend three or more hours each weekday on elder care.

“We’re just fried a lot of the time,” Richard admits. “My wife does so much. Usually, she has to make a separate dinner plate for grandpa since there are a lot of foods he can’t eat anymore. It can be hard getting the kids to do homework and also taking care of him.”


Professional and financial repercussions of caregiving

Caregivers may have to miss work for a loved one’s doctor’s appointments, emergency calls, and days without in-home care. This can lead to poor performance, lost pay, and fewer vacation days. However, providing in-home care for a loved one can reduce professional care expenses and help forge bonds between family members.

Since the beginning of 2020, Richard’s been working from home. He often spends afternoons helping his grandfather with showers, trips to the bathroom, and other needs. This has helped his family cut the cost of professional in-home dementia care in half.

“I’m dreading going back to the office because so much of the money I make in those hours goes straight to caregiver costs, and I don’t get to spend time with him,” Richard explains.


Paying for dementia care

Families typically pay for in-home dementia care out of pocket using private funds like savings or pension income. While there isn’t a cure for dementia, appropriate care can help someone living with the condition to maintain their quality of life, according to Stanford Medicine. Medication, regular doctor’s visits, and treatment for other health conditions — like depression and loss of hearing or vision — are key factors in successful dementia care.

H3: Does Medicare cover in-home dementia care costs?

Medicare will not pay for in-home dementia care services. However, Medicare does cover the cost of some dementia-related care like cognitive assessments, medications, care planning assistance.


Does private health insurance cover the cost of dementia care?

Different private health insurance plans, like employer-sponsored health plans and Medigap insurance plans, cover different aspects of medical care for a senior with dementia. However, in-home care for dementia usually isn’t covered by private plans. Review your loved one’s policy for specifics.

How much does memory care cost?

The median monthly cost of a memory care facility is $6,200, according to A Place for Mom’s proprietary data. While communities vary, memory care often includes on-site assistance with ADLs, incontinence care, meals, transportation, activities, and other services. Facilities are often designed with unique features that promote comfort, safety, and independence, for residents with cognitive impairment.

Help understanding in-home dementia care costs

Budgeting for the cost of dementia care can be complicated, especially if your loved one’s condition is constantly evolving. For more information about dementia care costs specific to your family’s needs, reach out to one of A Place for Mom’s Senior Living Advisors. They’ll consider your family’s unique situation and share local memory care and in-home dementia care options with you — all at no cost to your family.

This article originally appeared on APlaceForMom and was syndicated by MediaFeed.

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