Paying for a residential care home

All care homes charge a fee for the residential services they provide.

However, you may be able to get financial support to help cover the cost.

Choosing a more expensive care home

The care home you choose may charge more than our standard weekly rate and the difference in price is called a ‘top-up fee’.

Paying for a temporary stay in a care home

You may enter a care home temporarily as part of a planned or unplanned stay. When this happens, we'll charge you a standard rate if this is a short term care placement. View our standard charges for adult care services.

Where your stay is to give your carer a break (respite) we'll carry out a financial assessment as if you are living in your own home.

If you already pay a weekly charge for the care and support you receive at home, we’ll continue to charge you this amount.

If your stay in a care home becomes permanent, it is at this stage that we’ll carry out a new financial assessment and advise you if you need to pay more or less each week.

You may also have to go into a care home following a stay in hospital. During this time you may not be charged for your stay in care until a care practitioner has assessed you. Your care practitioner will give you more information about any charges for this placement.

What happens to your benefits when you move into a care home

When you move into a care home, most of the pension and benefit income you receive won't change and it will be taken into account when we assess how much you'll need to pay towards the cost of your residential and nursing care. There are, however, some exceptions.

Care Component

Normally you cannot be paid the following benefits after the first 28 days in a care home or hospital.

  • Attendance allowance (AA)
  • Disability Living Allowance (DLA) care component
  • Personal Independence Payment (PIP) daily living component

This is because the care provided for you is being paid for out of public funds.

However, if you pay the fees for the care home yourself, without funding from the council, or if you're receiving temporary funding which will be repaid in full (most likely because you're selling your home and have a deferred payment agreement with the council), you'll continue to receive your AA, DLA care component or PIP daily living component.

Mobility Component

DLA and PIP mobility components are not affected when you move into a care home and you will continue to be eligible for these benefits.

However, if you have a mobility car that you give up when you move into residential or nursing care, you may no longer have an entitlement to receive the mobility component.

Joint benefits

If you've claimed any joint benefits with your spouse or partner - for example, Pension Credit or Universal Credit - it's important that you inform the Department for Work and Pensions that you've moved into a care home on a long-term basis. This is because you and your partner will now both be assessed individually for benefits purposes.

Occupational and private pensions

If you get an occupational or personal pension and your spouse or partner remains at home, we’ll only include half of this income in your financial assessment, assuming that you pass the other half to your spouse/civil partner.

Questions about paying for a residential care home

If you have any questions about paying for your stay in a residential care home, speak to your social worker or get in touch with us using the contact details on this page.