Live-in care is often regarded as an alternative to moving into senior housing when parents become older and need more assistance at home. But is live-in care similar to senior housing choices like assisted living in terms of expenses and quality of care? For a loved one who wants to age in place, consider the advantages of live-in care (as well as its drawbacks).

Live-In Home Care: What Is It?

Live-in care is sometimes mistaken for overnight or 24-hour care. Live-in care involves the supply of lodging and board to the carer, whether they are employed privately or by a professional agency. The live-in caregiver moves into the house with the care recipient and is given access to rest and respite time. A live-in caregiver typically has a five- to eight-hour time of sleep incorporated into the care plan, however, there may be some kind of schedule adaption so that the care recipient and the caregiver’s sleep cycles are in sync.

Even when the care recipient is sleeping during overnight care and 24-hour care, the caregiver is nonetheless compensated for being up and on duty. The 24-hour period is divided into shifts covered by several carers, sometimes under the direction of an agency, to ensure that a senior is never left alone. A senior may be as secure as possible at all hours of the day and night in the comfort of their own home by hiring round-the-clock care.

How Much Do Live-In Caregivers Cost?

Families sometimes believe live-in care to be a less costly alternative than assisted living facilities or hourly in-home care services, as mentioned in EmbracingHomeCare Caregiver Forum. After all, your buddy, sister-in-law, or distant cousin needs lodging nonetheless. Sadly, it’s not that simple.

Federal standards for pay, hours, and specific guidelines for certain sorts of employees are established under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Some FLSA regulations, such as the minimum wage and overtime compensation, may or may not apply to live-in caregivers, depending on the nature of their job and labour.

However, ten states (California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, and Virginia), as well as two significant cities (Seattle and Philadelphia), have passed additional protections in the form of domestic worker bills of rights, despite the fact that there are currently no employment laws specifically governing live-in caregivers. While every charter of rights is different, the following basic rules apply:

  • Pay is separate from and in addition to board and lodging.
  • An employee of a home is entitled to time off throughout the working day.
  • Five to eight hours of sleep every night are required of home employees.
  • An employee in a home could be eligible for overtime compensation.
  • Employees of households are shielded from harassment and discrimination at work.
  • No matter which states you call home, bear these laws in mind while negotiating a fair contract with a live-in caregiver. The average hourly wage for a live-in caregiver in 2021 will be $12.27, according to It should be noted that lodging and board by itself cannot be seen as an equitable exchange for the provision of care; hence, it is either used to defray hourly expenses or is given “free” in addition to an agreed-upon wage.

Calculate the cost of renting a room and the local hourly in-home care rate to get an idea of total compensation. Finally, to specify the specifics of a live-in caregiver’s payment schedule, draft a formal care agreement.

Make an agreement for live-in care and compensation and add the following:

  • What’s the anticipated cost of lodging and meals?
  • What is the care’s agreed-upon hourly rate?
  • How many hours a day will care to be given?
  • What is the caregiver’s compensation after deducting lodging and board?

Making sure everyone is on the same page today by having in-depth talks about roles and expectations can help prevent future problems. While putting the finishing touches on your live-in care agreement, keep the following in mind:

  • Provide a list of your unique caring responsibilities. To specify expectations for companionship, personal help (such as bathing and toileting), pet care, cooking, cleaning, transportation, etc., create a complete care plan.
  • Will the weekly or monthly timetable include time off?
  • Who will plan the unattended hours’ coverage?
  • Would additional care deliver beyond the predetermined timetable result in overtime compensation being offered (or required)?
  • What regulations apply to the usage of common areas, visitors, pets, and vehicles?
  • How will finances be managed while making home purchases?
  • What circumstances give rise to the agreement’s termination?

Assisted living vs. live-in care

The average monthly cost of assisted living in the US is $4,300, according to Genworth Financial. The price of assisted living varies by location and the precise care services that are added to a facility’s basic tariff, much like the price of in-home care. Ageing in place may be more expensive than you think, even though many seniors object to the expense of assisted living. Even if a property is owned free and clear, there are still a lot of costs involved in keeping it up. The price of a live-in caretaker, together with property taxes, insurance premiums, house renovations, repairs, and maintenance, adds up. A more cost-effective alternative to live-in home care for seniors who really need monitoring and/or help with 24-hour availability may be assisted living.

Gains from Live-In Care

Offering room and board may significantly lower the cost of care, particularly if the senior already has plenty of space at their present abode. Senior who remains at home may get the help they need in a private environment, establish their own schedule, and stay connected to their local neighbourhood. A senior who would otherwise be alone might benefit from the company and socializing of live-in caregivers. Families often feel comfort in knowing that a caregiver is there in the house with their elderly loved one at all times.

Problems with Live-In Care

But, depending on who you employ and the specifics of their contract, the drawbacks of hiring live-in care may vary. Long-term care is costly, especially when paying out of pocket. The practical difficulties are basically the same as when employing an independent caregiver since most live-in carers are privately employed. The family is solely responsible for investigating the history, credentials, and references of the caregiver. While employed, the family will also have to deal with intricate tax obligations, payroll management, and other paperwork.

But more importantly, give your candidates significant thought. A live-in caretaker has a lot of duties, which might strain their relationships. An alternate care choice can be preferable if there is a chance that one or both parties would feel cheated.

It is unreasonable to expect unskilled caregivers to provide 24/7 care or professional care services as a senior’s requirements grow. Each caregiver who wants to prevent burnout and guarantee the delivery of high-quality care must take a respite. A senior may want to think about moving into a senior living facility if they need or are getting close to 24-hour care.


Call now for a free consultation

Are you looking for compassionate and reliable home care services in Orange, Osceola, Brevard, or Seminole counties? Look no further than our professional team at Embracing Home Care! Our highly trained caregivers provide personalized care for seniors and individuals with disabilities, ensuring that they can continue to live independently in the comfort of their own homes. With a variety of services including personal care, transportation, meal preparation, and companionship, we strive to improve the quality of life for our clients and provide peace of mind for their families. Contact us today at 321-758-2036 to learn more about our affordable and flexible home care options and to schedule a consultation with one of our care coordinators. Let us help you or your loved one live life to the fullest!  We serve Central Florida cities like Orlando, Apopka, Ocoee, Winter Garden, Sanford, Altamonte Springs, Casselberry, Palm Bay, Melbourne, Titusville, Kissimmee, St.  Cloud, Celebration, Lake Mary, Oviedo, Longwood, Winter Springs, Cocoa Beach and more.

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