Home care costs vary depending on where you live, the level of care needed, and whether or not you choose to find care through an agency, an introductory agency, or directly with a self-employed carer.

How much does hourly home care cost?

Many people prefer to stay in their own homes as they grow older. Home care can provide the support to stay safe, independent and well at an hourly cost that may be lower than you’d think.

When you are struggling to manage at home alone, residential care is not the only option.

Carers can be employed to come into the home and help with everything from chores to self-care. They can provide a helping hand and a friendly face at a price that can be surprisingly affordable.

The national difference

Home care costs vary depending on where you live, the sort of care needed and the way in which you access and employ the support.

National research shows that the average price paid for hourly home care in England was £15.50. However, there are significant variations across the country, with rates in London and the South East being around thirty percent higher than in Newcastle and the North East.

The rates are typically higher for those with complex needs and demands, which will require more intensive care and caregivers with specific training and experience.

Minimum wage

Care work is incredibly rewarding but it can also be difficult and demanding. Too often, carers are overworked and underpaid, with rates usually on, or around the national living wage of £7.20 an hour.

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This is often the case, despite the fact that as a client, you may be paying a significantly higher amount to a care agency provider. Agencies usually put this down to commission and administration fees.

The Hometouch difference

Hometouch acts as a service for clients to find local, self-employed caregivers. This innovative model makes a difference to clients and the carers we work with.

The carers have a much better working environment. Each individual has greater control over their schedule and work choices as well as significantly better pay, hometouch are accredited Living Wage employers and our carers typically take home over £12 an hour.

Hometouch carers are in charge of their own rates, they can set them to reflect their experience, training and the duties they are required to perform.

It may also vary according to the time spent at a given location, and the travel time. Many carers charge an hourly rate of £15 or more with the average currently being approximately £12 per hour.

The hometouch approach means that the costs are lower to the customer, you have a high level of choice and control and the carer is fairly compensated for their work.

Funding home care

Home care can be funded privately or with support from your local authority. A care assessment can be carried out to establish whether you are entitled to any funding. This looks at individual financial means as well as care needs, to decide whether your loved one is eligible for assistance.

If they are assessed as being in need, you may decide to use council care provision, or you may be offered a personal budget to pay for care and support. This can offer you the freedom to choose people that you can relate to and that best meet your needs.

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It’s not easy to decide that care is needed, and finding a care solution that best fits your needs can be stressful. However, with the right support you can ensure your loved one continues to live safely in their own home, in comfort and with their dignity intact.

Find out more about the cost of care:

Dr Jane Gilbert

Jane has over 20 years’ experience as a health writer and TV presenter. Jane writes on a wide variety of clinical and care topics – from explaining the latest studies and research to unpacking conditions and discussing treatment options. Jane holds a MBBS degree from Imperial College, London and spent seven years working in the NHS.

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