Advice on funding Care home?

FoxMulder

Registered User
Apr 16, 2016
24
Northampton
My mother have agreed to go in a Care Home and I have spent the last 2 weeks searching for the right Care Home fir her. She has Alzehemier's Disease and cancer and there are few places in our local area that accommodates her needs. The Social Services gave me a internet directory of Care homes and I have visited five of them. The trouble is they cost between £1,250.000-£700 per week and are all full. The first one I visited was lovely and I took my mother to take a look at it. She liked it and they offered her a room on a 4 week trial basis. I agreed to accept it immediately as my mum would have be put on a waiting list and don't know how long before a placement be offered. My mum's mental and physical health is getting worse. She kept saying she wanted to move out of her home and move to a Care place. At her home I found a note she had written begging to be move to a Care home. On the day of a placement was offered I had to pay for 4 weeks upfront. The council were not too happy but I had no choice it was either that or nothing. My mother's health and safety was at risk.
I have emailing the council with updates of my search and the person overseeing my mother's case said that Brokers were looking for suitable places for her. I had no information from the Brokers about the low cost Care homes. On the day we accepted a placement I sent emails and texts to the Social Worker. The Care Home Managers tried to contact the person to no avail. Eventually another person from the Council phoned us and sent me an email say the Care Fees were above the threashold limit of £500.00 per week and could not guaranteed they would fund the home for 12 weeks and deferred payments of 4 weeks. My mother would have to be moved to a cheaper home but all the homes I have seen costs above that. Residents with higher care needs cost more than with those with less. An financial Assessment of my mother's income was done but its is very confusing.
My mother's home would be have to be sold which would not result much income and she has a small pension. I am her only daughter with a low income. I do not have any other relatives to help with the costs. I may have to dipped into my savings or take out a loan to fund her care. I am looking for charities or trusts who could help fund her care. I am even considering going on crowdfunding. Interesting the council have been in the news as the government have to take over the running of the organisation as they have run out of funds and have to make a lot of cuts in our county. They spent 68 million on their head office in the town centre but say they have no money left. I would welcome any ideas or advice,
 

father ted

Registered User
Aug 16, 2010
694
London
Someone else will come along with advice but financially it is not your responsibility end of. Any funding would be from your mother's savings, assets in the first instance. From what I understand the LA carry out a financial assessment and take over from there with families topping up shortfalls.
No way should you be considering a loan. Call the Alzheimer's helpline tomorrow.
 

Louise7

Registered User
Mar 25, 2016
1,602
Was your Mother receiving care via social services prior to you looking for a home? Due to funding shortages social services will generally only fund a care home place once carers at home have been tried. Usually if someone needs more than 4 care visits a day that is when consideration is given to a home, and legally social services are required to provide at least one care home option which meets the individual's needs and is within the maximum local authority budget, which is what the brokerage team would have been looking for.

You say that a financial assessment has been carried out by the LA but is confusing - what is confusing about it? What usually happens is that you should receive a breakdown showing your Mother's income and almost all of this will go towards the cost of the care except for around £24.90 weekly which is a 'personal allowance' to pay for your Mother's incidentals such as toiletries etc. In respect of her house, this will be disregarded for up to 12 weeks and will then be treated as an asset to pay for your Mother's care. If you are unable to sell within 12 weeks, or don't wish to, then you could possibly enter into a deferred payment scheme whereby the local authority fund your Mother's care and recoup the cost (plus interest & charges) when either the house is sold or your Mother passes away.

As father ted has said, the responsibility for paying for your Mother's care does not rest with you. If the proceeds from her house sale do not last very long then the local authority will have to fund her care. However they will only fund up to a certain limit, as you have discovered, so this will limit the number of homes available and if your Mother is placed in a more expensive home now then she would have to move unless the additional funds could be found. The LA will probably ask within the financial assessment form if you wish to contribute a 'top up' payment towards the care but you are under no obligation to do so.

I think you need to go back to the social worker who is overseeing your Mum's case to chase up the the brokerage team to see what home(s) they can find within their budget. They can sometimes go above the budget if there is absolutely nothing available to meet your Mother's needs within the budget but they have to look first, rather than you looking on their behalf, and they can often negotiate cheaper rates with homes than you personally would be able to do. I appreciate that you were limited when looking at homes, so have placed your Mother in one which is outside of the LA budget, but by paying for 4 week's upfront yourself you may be placing yourself in a difficult position financially, especially if you are bound to a contract with the care home. Hope this helps, but definitely get back to the social worker overseeing your Mother's case or ring the Alzheimer's helpline as mentioned by father ted.
 

FoxMulder

Registered User
Apr 16, 2016
24
Northampton
Someone else will come along with advice but financially it is not your responsibility end of. Any funding would be from your mother's savings, assets in the first instance. From what I understand the LA carry out a financial assessment and take over from there with families topping up shortfalls.
No way should you be considering a loan. Call the Alzheimer's helpline tomorrow.

Hi Father Ted, thank you for your reply to my post. My mother's income is not very much and I do not want her passed from care home to another when the Care Home fees exceeds the limit of the Local Authority funding threshold. The cost of Care homes is staggering!!
 

FoxMulder

Registered User
Apr 16, 2016
24
Northampton
Was your Mother receiving care via social services prior to you looking for a home? Due to funding shortages social services will generally only fund a care home place once carers at home have been tried. Usually if someone needs more than 4 care visits a day that is when consideration is given to a home, and legally social services are required to provide at least one care home option which meets the individual's needs and is within the maximum local authority budget, which is what the brokerage team would have been looking for.

You say that a financial assessment has been carried out by the LA but is confusing - what is confusing about it? What usually happens is that you should receive a breakdown showing your Mother's income and almost all of this will go towards the cost of the care except for around £24.90 weekly which is a 'personal allowance' to pay for your Mother's incidentals such as toiletries etc. In respect of her house, this will be disregarded for up to 12 weeks and will then be treated as an asset to pay for your Mother's care. If you are unable to sell within 12 weeks, or don't wish to, then you could possibly enter into a deferred payment scheme whereby the local authority fund your Mother's care and recoup the cost (plus interest & charges) when either the house is sold or your Mother passes away.

As father ted has said, the responsibility for paying for your Mother's care does not rest with you. If the proceeds from her house sale do not last very long then the local authority will have to fund her care. However they will only fund up to a certain limit, as you have discovered, so this will limit the number of homes available and if your Mother is placed in a more expensive home now then she would have to move unless the additional funds could be found. The LA will probably ask within the financial assessment form if you wish to contribute a 'top up' payment towards the care but you are under no obligation to do so.

I think you need to go back to the social worker who is overseeing your Mum's case to chase up the the brokerage team to see what home(s) they can find within their budget. They can sometimes go above the budget if there is absolutely nothing available to meet your Mother's needs within the budget but they have to look first, rather than you looking on their behalf, and they can often negotiate cheaper rates with homes than you personally would be able to do. I appreciate that you were limited when looking at homes, so have placed your Mother in one which is outside of the LA budget, but by paying for 4 week's upfront yourself you may be placing yourself in a difficult position financially, especially if you are bound to a contract with the care home. Hope this helps, but definitely get back to the social worker overseeing your Mother's case or ring the Alzheimer's helpline as mentioned by father ted.
 

FoxMulder

Registered User
Apr 16, 2016
24
Northampton
Was your Mother receiving care via social services prior to you looking for a home? Due to funding shortages social services will generally only fund a care home place once carers at home have been tried. Usually if someone needs more than 4 care visits a day that is when consideration is given to a home, and legally social services are required to provide at least one care home option which meets the individual's needs and is within the maximum local authority budget, which is what the brokerage team would have been looking for.

You say that a financial assessment has been carried out by the LA but is confusing - what is confusing about it? What usually happens is that you should receive a breakdown showing your Mother's income and almost all of this will go towards the cost of the care except for around £24.90 weekly which is a 'personal allowance' to pay for your Mother's incidentals such as toiletries etc. In respect of her house, this will be disregarded for up to 12 weeks and will then be treated as an asset to pay for your Mother's care. If you are unable to sell within 12 weeks, or don't wish to, then you could possibly enter into a deferred payment scheme whereby the local authority fund your Mother's care and recoup the cost (plus interest & charges) when either the house is sold or your Mother passes away.

As father ted has said, the responsibility for paying for your Mother's care does not rest with you. If the proceeds from her house sale do not last very long then the local authority will have to fund her care. However they will only fund up to a certain limit, as you have discovered, so this will limit the number of homes available and if your Mother is placed in a more expensive home now then she would have to move unless the additional funds could be found. The LA will probably ask within the financial assessment form if you wish to contribute a 'top up' payment towards the care but you are under no obligation to do so.

I think you need to go back to the social worker who is overseeing your Mum's case to chase up the the brokerage team to see what home(s) they can find within their budget. They can sometimes go above the budget if there is absolutely nothing available to meet your Mother's needs within the budget but they have to look first, rather than you looking on their behalf, and they can often negotiate cheaper rates with homes than you personally would be able to do. I appreciate that you were limited when looking at homes, so have placed your Mother in one which is outside of the LA budget, but by paying for 4 week's upfront yourself you may be placing yourself in a difficult position financially, especially if you are bound to a contract with the care home. Hope this helps, but definitely get back to the social worker overseeing your Mother's case or ring the Alzheimer's helpline as mentioned by father ted.
Hi Lousie 7,

Thank you for your feedback,
Before my mother moved in the home, she had daily carers who visited her home twice a day to administer medicine and make sure she was eating. The Council pay half of her daily care while my mother pay half as well. The interesting thing is if the Carers cost more, the council will pay less and my mother will have to pay more and the vice-versa if the Carers cost less, then the council will pay more and my mother less. Its the same criteria with the council funding for Care Home as well.

The Financial Assessment statement is very confusing to read. Even my partner was confused by it. Thank you for explaining about the 12 weeks funding and deferred payment. I am profoundly deaf and me, my partner and the Social worker and the Financial Officer were engaged in a three way conversation with my partner having to sign for me. It got lost in translation via British Sign Language. No clear written explainations was given.

Also the Social Worker left it to me to source Care Homes and visit them. We did not know she had Brokers looking for Care Homes in the area until after we accepted a placement at the Care Home. All the Dual Care Homes except one which we accepted were full and expensive. My mother wants to stay in the Care Home with the local area and with her deteriorating state, I do not want her passed her from Care home to another. So I will be awaiting to hear from them this week. This is all new for me and it is very stressful for me.
 

Beate

Registered User
May 21, 2014
11,833
London
To be honest, while it's a good idea to look at care homes yourself, you then should have liaised with Social Services before accepting a placement and paying for it yourself. If it's an expensive one there is every chance that your mother will be moved again after the four weeks. As long as they pay, they have the say!
 

FoxMulder

Registered User
Apr 16, 2016
24
Northampton
To be honest, while it's a good idea to look at care homes yourself, you then should have liaised with Social Services before accepting a placement and paying for it yourself. If it's an expensive one there is every chance that your mother will be moved again after the four weeks. As long as they pay, they have the say!
Hello Beate:- Thank you for your comment but if you have read my post properly I had been liasing with the Social Services about looking for a care home. They left the ball in my court when they gave me directory of Care homes and I have been updating them about the ones I have visited. All of them but one were full and my mum mental and physical state were deteriorating fast, When a place was offered, what was I supposed to do?!! Turn it down and wait five or six months until another one placement turns up. The Social services have not been communicating with me about their search for a low cost home. I am profoundly deaf and rely one emails and texts for communications. The care home placement was paid out from my mum's mother as I have LPA. So please if you haven't got anything constructive rather passing judgement on others, don't say anything at all !!! This forum is for people to come for advice, not to be judged.
I am deeply offended by your post.
 

Beate

Registered User
May 21, 2014
11,833
London
I have read your post and I am not passing judgement - simply trying to explain how the process works. If SS are paying, they have the right to decide which care home they are willing to pay for and you didn't give them that chance, which is why they are now telling you they can't guarantee her stay and that she might have to be moved to a cheaper home.
 

FoxMulder

Registered User
Apr 16, 2016
24
Northampton
I have read your post and I am not passing judgement - simply trying to explain how the process works. If SS are paying, they have the right to decide which care home they are willing to pay for and you didn't give them that chance, which is why they are now telling you they can't guarantee her stay and that she might have to be moved to a cheaper home.
Your first response to my post was not very tactful and helpful. Again you have not read my post properly, Jumping to judgements again. Through my search I sent the social services updates on my search for a care ihome. The Brokers did not send me any informatioh about what care homes they have found. On the day my mother was offered a placement, I had difficulty contacting the social services. The care Home tried to phone them numerous times. So what was supposed to do!!! Turned down the placement and wait for 5 or 6 months while my mother's mental and physical health gets worse. So I gave them every chance to communicate with me!! It is very easy for you to sit at your keyboard and make judgements unless you have walked in my shoes!!! I don't want to argue with you as I am stressed enough.
 

Lavender45

Registered User
Jun 7, 2015
1,598
Liverpool
I know this isn't helpful, but I just wanted to say you are not the only one left to find a care home without social services support.

Mum's first social worker could not provide so much as a list of homes with vacancies. She told me to look online and that was the beginning and end of it.

It took time to find a home willing to take my mum (she was sectioned due to violence) and for her to be ready to leave her secure unit. Just as we had a home in place and funding agreed social worker number one left and we acquired the joy which still is social worker number 2. Number 2 didn't like the cost of the home and suddenly started talking about brokerage and putting my mum out to bid to see who felt they could take her. I'm afraid I lost the plot and tore strips off social worker number 2, point out that number 1 had done nothing to assist the search. I won the battle, but it has left me wary of social workers.

I guess what I'm saying is that it is possible to get a very lazy social worker who doesn't do his or her job and doesn't follow procedures which is definitely to your detriment. As you were just left to get on with it would it be possible to set up a meeting with the social worker and their manager to put the case that they did not supply so much as a list of homes in the hopes that they will accept the placement you have found as they had not followed what seems to be usual procedure and moving your mum would be detrimental to her?
 

Louise7

Registered User
Mar 25, 2016
1,602
There are definitely a variety of social workers out there, some much better than others!

From my experience in getting a home for Mum (who owned a house but was not yet self-funding at the point of needing a care home) the usual procedure is for the brokerage team to find a suitable home which is within the LA budget - as mentioned earlier they have a legal obligation to provide at least one suitable placement.

When I was in your position last year - needing an urgent placement for Mum - it was a case of putting constant pressure on the social worker to find a placement. This worked and Mum was found a placement at 5pm on a Friday evening and entered the home on Saturday afternoon. I know that the social worker had been ringing round homes herself, as well as the brokerage team, so this situation is dependant on the social worker being proactive.

It seems that in your case there was a communication breakdown - the social worker should have let you know that the brokerage team were looking for a placement. I think if I was in your current position I would get back to the social worker and ask for details of what placement(s) the brokerage team have found and then go and have a look at the home(s) to see if they suit. Somewhere 'cheaper' - providing it meets your Mum's care needs - is not necessarily going to be a bad home. The problem with not being a self-funder (or having limited funds/assets) is that you will be restricted with regards a choice of home but a home which can meet your Mum's needs and is within the LA budget would mean that she wouldn't then need to move in the future. I think my concern would be that having organised a placement for your Mum yourself the social worker may feel inclined to just leave it to you to sort out the finances. As Lavender45 has said, you need to get back to the social worker and arrange a meeting to discuss the options (or at least a proper email dialogue if that would be better for you). Good luck, and let us know how you get on. I know from experience that trying to get hold of a social worker isn't always easy!
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
8,459
Yorkshire
hi @FoxMulder
I'd have a discussion with the care home manager and ask how flexible they are willing to be about the payment of fees
if you have LPA for finance and property, it may well be worth getting underway the process of selling your mum's property, so that you have some idea of the finances that will be available, and talking with an estate agent may give you a clearer idea of how quick or slow the process may be
you say your mum has cancer also - I wonder if it would be worth looking into CHC funding - there's a thread all about that
https://forum.alzheimers.org.uk/showthread.php?86059-CHC-(Continuing-Healthcare)-support-thread
and this is a link to the main AS site
https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/info/20032/legal_and_financial/848/what_is_nhs_continuing_healthcare
might it help to have a more immediate response to your questions - could your partner call the AS Helpline on your behalf - I believe they have the ability to support callers who are deaf (apologies I don't know the proper terminology for the technology involved)
0300 222 11 22
Monday to Wednesday 9am – 8pm
Thursday and Friday 9am – 5pm
Saturday and Sunday 10am – 4pm
https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/info/20012/helpline?_ga=2.166791678.1165298503.1522487571-1909556355.1516185753