The cost of Aged Care in Australia

Many Australians aren’t clear on how much Aged Care costs. This is because costs can vary depending on your circumstances. Find out how the system works.

As you or your loved ones age, and may require some assistance with meals, cleaning, transport or shopping. Sometimes, the need for support may expand to a point where having a full-time live-in carer or moving into residential care makes sense.

While most Australians understand that Aged Care exists and are clear about the different forms it exists in (home care/live-in care/residential care), it can be confusing to figure out how much the different types of Aged Care services will cost. What’s more, many people are concerned about reaching out for the support of a carer because they think they won’t be able to afford it.

Arranging care can definitely feel confusing because the cost of Aged Care in Australia varies depending on your circumstances. The amount you pay depends on the amount of money you have and the assets you own. 

According to the Australian Government:

“If you can afford to, you’re expected to help with the cost of government-funded services. How much you pay depends on:

  • your financial situation
  • how many services you receive
  • the types of services you receive
  • where you receive the care
  • the fees the Aged Care provider charges”

The cost of home care in Australia

Home care refers to having assistance with your basic needs, including paying bills, keeping your home clean, socialising with others and grocery shopping.

There are four recognised levels of home care, starting with ‘basic’ and extending to live-in care. The government will contribute between $9,000 and $52,000 per year to the cost of this care, depending on the level of service needed.

For example, if you are on a single basic age pension, you will be asked to pay a basic daily fee of between $9.63 and $10.75, depending on your level of care*. This represents a percentage of your pension.

If you have an income above the amount supplied by the aged pension, you will pay an additional fee, depending on how much this income is. For example, a single person earning over $27,840.80 per year will pay up to $15.43 per day.

If you earn more than $53,731.60 a year, your income-tested care fee is capped at $11,234.96 a year.

To find out exactly what you may be asked to pay for home care, you will either need to have an income assessment or request a pre-commencement letter for home care from Services Australia.

The best place to start is at your GP, who can refer you to a home care provider. From there, you can arrange for someone to visit you at home to explain the costs.

See more details about the cost of home care here: https://www.myagedcare.gov.au/home-care-package-costs-and-fees

View KOPWA’s home care packages here: https://www.kopwa.org.au/services/community-home-care/

The cost of residential Aged Care in Australia

For those requiring more help with their daily living activities,
residential aged care is an option. Residential aged care provides accommodation and 24/7- support in whatever ways you need.

Based on current rates, the maximum basic daily fee for Aged Care is $52.25 per day, or $19,071.25 per year. This fee helps pay for your day-to-day services such as meals, cleaning, facilities management and laundry.

Everyone is expected to pay a basic daily fee to cover these services. This amount adds up to 85% of the single person rate of the basic age pension.

If you have an income above the pension, you will be expected to pay more for residential Aged Care. 

Here’s how the Government explains it:

  • if you have income below $27,840 and assets below $50,500, the Australian Government will pay your accommodation costs
  • if you have income above $70,320 or assets above $171,535.20, you will need to pay for the full cost of your accommodation, negotiated and agreed to with the aged care home
  • if you need to pay for part of your accommodation, the Australian Government will pay the rest.

The highest amount an Aged Care home can charge you is $28,087.41 per year, or $67,409.85 in a lifetime.

Some Aged Care homes may charge additional fees for extra ‘luxury’ options such as larger rooms or in-room WiFi. These additional services/fees are optional.

As with in-home care, figuring out the cost of residential aged care in Australia can feel overwhelming. However, you don’t have to calculate the costs on your own. Contact us for a free non-obligatory consultation appointment and we will be able to explain how much you can expect to pay.

See more about the cost of residential Aged Care here: https://www.myagedcare.gov.au/aged-care-home-costs-and-fees

View KOPWA’s residential Aged Care facilities here:

To find out more about the services and costs involved with Aged Care, contact KOPWA today.