costs of live in carer uk

24 Hour Live In Care Costs In The UK in 2019

Article updated 14 February 2019 and written by Rose Walters.

Live in Care is increasingly becoming a viable alternative to going in to a care home or to provide respite care.  In this article we will help you:

  • See if a live-in carer is the right option for you and your family
  • What options you have to choose a 24 hour live in careworker
  • How much live in care costs and the costs of a live in carer
  • How to pay for your live in care
  • How to choose a care company
  • Live in care for the elderly

1. What is 24 hour live in care?

Live-in care is basically home care but it’s where you have a professional care giver provide support and help to you, or a loved one, 24 hours per day care at home. This could be on a permanent basis or where they are providing respite care to cover for an existing carer.

This means that there is always someone on hand helping you with your daily living.  Some care givers live in all the time whilst others work a rota schedule of, say, one week on and then one week off.  You can read more about the benefits of a live in carer here.

Here is a short video that explains more about what live in care is and the support provided.

2. What are live in care costs in the UK?

If you, or a loved one, do want 24 hour home care then the fees can range widely.  We often get asked how much do live in carers cost.  There is no easy answer to this.

However, typically  24 hour live in care costs, from well rated providers in the UK, can start at around £800 per week and can go up to over £1,800 per week. This care cost will rise if there are 2 or more people that need caring for at the same time,

The costs of live-in caregivers are what they are because in effect you are hiring someone 24 hours a day for 7 days a week. This caregiver may then take on the role other members of the family may have undertaken.

What you will find is that the costs can also vary depending on the types of services that you want from your carer.  For example, some carers have their own cars, which they can make available.  However, if you want the carer to make their car available then there may be an extra cost for this.

Depending on your requirements for 24hr live in care, it is often less expensive than residential care, which is why we are seeing more demand for this and less people looking to move in to residential care

However, these live-in carer costs are often cheaper than going in to a care home, as in effect you aren’t renting a room from the care home because you are living in your own house.

It is important to determine your budget and the cost of care at home before embarking on choosing live-in care. You can find support on financing care and calculating the cost of your live in care here in our paying for care section.

It’s worth noting however that if you’d like to access live-in care as a couple, it may be a significantly more cost-effective option compared with a residential care home. This is because you’ll only pay once for the care, but would be required to pay for two places if you were for example in a nursing home.

2) Live in Care for respite cover costs

We researched over 100 respite care providers and the average cost to have cover through the week was £700-£800.  This is where one person needed caring for.  Where there was a couple, respite care costs would typically be in the region of £1,200 – £1,5000 per week.

Our Robot can identify a suitable live in carer for you within 1 minute.  Give him a go!

3. How do I find a someone to provide 24 hour care at home within my budget?

If you, or a loved one, are self funding the costs of care at home then you will want to ensure that you get value for money.  However, we have found that there have been a number of new personal care providers emerge in the UK over the past couple of years.

This makes choosing a carer that is within your budget potentially even easier as in some areas costs are falling.

If you want some help with finding a carer within your budget we can help you – You can have a chat with the chatbot below (or clicking the icon of the man in the bottom right corner).  He will ask you some questions and then based on your answers recommend a live care company to you to look at in more detail.

4. How can I pay for my live-in carer costs in the UK?

As we have seen, the costs associated with 24 hour live in care support can be expensive.

If you are looking at ways to pay the costs of a live in caregiver in the UK then we would recommend that you speak to a specialist care costs funding advisor.  They will help ensure that:

  1. a) you get all the benefits and State help you are entitled to; and
  2. b) ensure that you use the most effective way to fund the costs and ensure that any inheritance tax is minimised.
  3. c) Depending on the severity of the care needs you might find that the NHS is responsible for meeting the costs of personal care.  This is through NHS Continuing Healthcare funding.  We would strongly recommend that you read up on this subject as if there is a continuing healthcare need, then you may not be responsible for paying and funding the care.  

You can find a local care fees funding advisor in our comprehensive independent directory of advisors by clicking here.

5.  Can I use equity release to pay for my live in carer fees?

Simple, the answer is YES.

Equity release is becoming, by far, one of the most popular ways to fund care live in care costs for the elderly.  You can read about how equity release works here.

Video – A short video explaining how it works and how you can use it to pay for your live in caregiver costs for the elderly.

Due to the fees involved for live in care, many people are increasingly using equity release to fund their live in care.

This is because if you own your own home you are able to borrow a lump sum, tax free against the value of your home.  The loan is then usually only repayable on death or if you move in to a care home. This can be a big decision so you should always discuss the impact of it with your family.

The most popular types of these schemes are:

If you are interested in exploring this option please leave your details on one of our equity release pages.

If you would like to learn more about this, you can watch this really informative video below.

Alternatively, you can speak to a specialist for free on 0800 4640 806.  They will be able to talk you through the options that are available to you.

Private Live in Carer

6 – How much equity release can I get from my home to pay for live-in care?

If you want to know how much money you can take from your home, please click on the equity release calculator below.  This will help you estimate how much money you can take from your house, tax-free.

We recommend that you give it a go as it often surprises people as to how much cash they can receive.

7 – How do I choose between living in care services?

In essence there are three options you have when it comes to choosing a live in carer.  The care services to choose between are:

  1. a) Source a living in care giver independently
  2. b) Use a live-in care agency
  3. c) Use a specialist living in care services recruitment agency

7a) – Source a live-in carer independently

Many families start by looking for private carers independently, as previously this was the only way to source 24 hour per day home care provision.

Advertisements can sometimes be placed in local papers or online directories, and carers can also be found through word of mouth recommendations.

Although this method allows you greater control, it is also very labour-intensive and time-consuming. It may take a while to find someone suitable – and once you do, you’ll need to interview them and ensure that they have been properly vetted and approved before they start working.

You’ll also be responsible for paying their wages and arranging shifts and rota’s.

Or you can let the UK Care Guide do it for you!  You can use our FREE care matching service, which you can read about here.

Or, you can chat to Rory the Robot (who you can find at the bottom of this page) and he will find you a live in carer straight away.

how much does a live in carer cost

7b) – Use a live in care agency

Live in care agencies are often specialists in this type of care alone.  However, many traditional home care service providers also often offer 24 hour home care support.

Understandably a lot of work, experience and know-how are required to ensure that you are matched to a carer who perfectly suits your needs. For this reason live in care agencies are regulated by the CQC (Care Quality Commission) and must employ workers who have been fully vetted and DBS checked to ensure that they are able to work with vulnerable people.

Some live in care providers only offer nursing care support, some provide companionship; others have specific experience with dementia. This should also influence your final decision.

Once you’ve introduced yourself to a number of agencies they should invite you to visit them, or arrange a home visit. They should be interested in finding out all about your care requirements and personal preferences.

Then as you progress you should be consulted on who will be administering your care – with a proper introduction and trial period to ensure they are right for you.

If you don’t feel that they are for you, you can source a live in carer independently. Private live in carers are still subject to certain regulations, but you should put appropriate steps in place to protect both you and them.

If you would like some help in choosing an agency, just get in contact with us and we will help you.

7c) – Use a specialist living in care recruitment agency

The third and final option involves approaching specialised recruitment agencies that deal specifically with experienced live-in carers.

They source and match professionals based on the criteria you provide.

The main difference between recruitment or introduction agencies and live-in care agencies is that in this instance professionals operate in a standalone capacity – and are self-employed.

Are you Looking for a Live in Carer?

Use our FREE Live in Care Finder service - talk to us about requirements and the person needing care and we will then identify which Live in Care provider is likely to be a good fit for you.  

Click the button below to find out how you can use our FREE service

About the author and her expertise

This article was written by Rose Walters a published writer that has written on a range of care related topics.   Rose writes from a lot of personal experience and is able to bring this in to the writing alongside the specialist knowledge she has on these topics.

Some more useful reading below



Tips on Live in Elderly Care

Tips on how to pay for care

Tips on how to avoid inheritance tax

See how you can use Equity Release to pay for your Live in Care

Tips on why you need a Will

Tips on getting a pre paid Funeral Plan

Read about why you need to do some Estate Planning as you go in to care

Read about whether the NHS should be paying your care costs

Are you you looking at Live in Care? Get free guidance and help.  Call 0330 1345 958 and speak to someone that can answer your questions and also tell you if you can get financial help towards the costs of care.

Do you know you might be entitled to financial help towards your live in care costs? 

Call us, in conjunction with Elder.org, for some free help and guidance.

Call - 0330 1345 958