The cost of senior healthcare can be a frightening experience when you know little about the process.  Assisted living is a facility that is designed to help maintain a senior’s independent living while providing supervision and services or activities.  The images of a sterile, hospital-like facility with cold staff and minimal entertainment is an idea of the past.

Modern assisted living communities offer art classes, host ice cream socials, and offer fun trips to movies while also offering the safety and security of a more frequent medical supervision. The services and options offered by an assisted living are designed to help with activities of daily living however each differs in their cost.

What Prices to Expect

Although the price of assisted living differs dramatically from state to state, the most middle ground is typically $3,600 a month or $120 a day, and runs approximately 60-70% of the cost of a room in a nursing home facility.  According to an interstate analysis of assisted living in the Unites States, the average annual cost of assisted living is $43, 539.00 (or $3,628.25 a month) and appears to be increasing 1-2% each year in a one bedroom accommodation.

Although that number may intimidate some, many facilities can generally range from $730 to $11,250 per month therefore shopping for right facility and remaining aware of any additional fees or charges can help manage the cost.  States, such as Missouri, Georgia, North Carolina, Utah, and Louisiana, tend to have the least expensive monthly assisted living costs while, states, such as Delaware, New Jersey, Alaska, Connecticut, and Washington DC, are the most expensive.

How to Pay For Assisted Living

The large price tag can be frightening however there are many choices in terms of how to pay.  Private savings, veteran benefits, health insurance, 401K plans, and Individual Retirement Accounts (IRA) are all easy choices for those that have them but may have specific requirements to qualify.  Some choose to sell assets, such as their home and cars, while others rely on health insurance to help cover the costs. Seniors can also consider a reverse mortgage, in which they borrow against the value of their house, to offset the cost.

Medicare and Medicaid

It is important to know that Medicare does not cover any assisted living services, though Medicaid might provide some help. Some facilities may only accept private pay.  Medicaid offers coverage for limited amount of time and may reduce or completely stop paying due to changes in health.  Medicaid typically pays on a needs-based system and lower income seniors are more likely to receive more coverage.



Learn more about assisted living and other healthcare options at the main Assisted Living page or the main Caregiving page.

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About the Author: Victoria K. Stickley is a copywriter, editor, and senior content manager based in the Dallas area. Her graduate education in counseling and research has helped immensely in her writing as well as the care she provides for her grandparents. She currently provides support and resources to senior care websites as she learns and experiences senior care first-hand.