10 What are the alternatives to live-in care & how do they compare?

Nearly three-quarters of us* wish to continue living in our own homes as we get older and it’s comforting to know that there are many options available to continue living at home.

*From research conducted by One Poll, July 2014, for live-in care


Domiciliary care (home care daily visits)

With live-in care, a care assistant will live in the home to provide full-time care, whereas visiting care (sometimes known as daily home care or domiciliary home care) will provide one or sometimes several care assistants who will visit at regular times every day or week.

While both visiting carers and live-in carers provide personal care and companionship, live-in care will provide more consistency throughout the day and over longer periods of time.

Residential and nursing care homes

When we find ourselves less able to cope with everyday life, the common misconception is that care homes are the only solution. This is simply not true. There are other life-enhancing options which may be better suited to your situation.

Although care homes offer a specially adapted environment for their residents’ comfort and safety, the low staff-to-resident ratios mean that the care staff are usually under pressure and unable to spend as much time with residents, whereas live-in carers support you with full-time one-to-one care. The full-time support of live-in care enables care assistants to provide companionship as well as care, and living in the home means live-in carers are able to be more responsive to support changing needs at any time. For people who want to retain an independent lifestyle, live-in care can provide a better solution and better value than a care home.

“I really enjoyed the residents when I worked at the care home but I didn’t like the environment. When you’ve got 27 residents and only three staff, it felt impossible to look after anybody properly – you simply didn’t have the time. It upset me so much that I left.” Chris

Remain in the comfort of your own home vs Move to a new unfamiliar environment

One-to-one care at home vs Average staff to resident ratio of 1:4**

Maintain your lifestyle and routines vs Regimented routine and drastic change of lifestyle

Live-in carers can take you on outings and accompany you to appointments vs Staff do not support you outside the residential home

Choice of what you eat and when you eat vs Set menu and meal times

Pets can remain at home vs Rules vary

Significant cost savings for couples vs You pay for two beds

*From research conducted by One Poll, July 2014, for live-in care