As your parents age, mobility limitations combined with an increase in care demands often require the move to a long-term care facility. Though long-term care facilities have their benefits, many seniors prefer to stay in the familiar and comforting environment that is their family home. In order to accommodate this request for your aging parents, there are three steps that must be taken.
Step 1: Assess Your Parents’ Needs
Many aging parents are able to live active and independent lifestyles well into their elderly years. For others, physical and cognitive difficulties necessitate 24/7 care from a healthcare professional. It is important to assess your parents’ needs for support and care and the level to which they can continue to conduct an independent lifestyle.
There are some conditions that clearly necessitate care, such as Alzheimer’s disease or an accident that has rendered your parent physically incapacitated. In other instances, you will need to keep a vigilant eye out for behaviours that indicate that your parent needs assistance. These behaviours may include mobility difficulties, forgetfulness with medication and bill payment, and trouble with daily tasks like meal preparation or bathing.
Once you have a better understanding of your parents’ needs, you will be able to draft a plan for support and arrange an appropriate level of funding to keep them at home.
Step 2: Evaluate Support Options
Once you have identified the particular needs of your parents, next you must evaluate what support is required and what is available. Between family support, provincial home care programs, private home care services, volunteer organizations, and errand services, can all of your parents’ needs be covered?
Some parents may only need occasional family support with running errands and providing companionship, which costs nothing but time. Others will require a 24/7 live-in caregiver to stay at home. You may be able to access many free or subsidized services, but there will likely be additional expenses required to help keep your aging parents at home.
Step 3: Arrange Funding
If your parents require the use of private services, you can calculate the monthly cost. Long-term care insurance, if purchased by your parents, can be used to cover some or all of the care expenses. If not, you must make arrangements to cover the cost of private home care.
The Beacon Group at Assante Financial Management Ltd.’s financial planning services can assist you with evaluating how to manage these monthly obligations. Your parents may also require financial planning to manage their savings.
As you navigate this process with your parents, it is wise to look ahead to your own future. Should you also decide to live out your older years at home, the financial decisions you make now will make this possible down the road. For more information about retirement planning, contact the Beacon Group at Assante Financial Management Ltd.