What Is the Average Cost of Aging in Place?

There are several benefits of aging in place, including that it's cost-effective. Discover the cost of aging in place and how it compares to other living facilities.

Aging in Place
March 7, 2023
What Is the Average Cost of Aging in Place?

If you’d rather live at home later in life than move to a nursing home or assisted living facility, you’re in the majority—77% of adults age 50 and up agree with you. But like many in the same age group, you may be wondering—can you afford aging in place?

In reality, the cost of aging in place can vary greatly depending on what resources exist in your community, the design and current condition of your home, and the type and amount of services you need to live safely and comfortably. Before setting any plans in stone, it’s wise to consider how aging in place may fit into your finances—and what aging in place resources are available to help.

Aging in Place vs Care Facilities: Comparing Costs

While there isn’t a simple apples-to-apples comparison of aging in place vs assisted living costs, there are some relevant data points that can help provide a baseline. 

According to 2021 figures, these are the average monthly costs for senior living: 

  • An assisted living facility costs $4,500 per month.
  • A nursing home semi-private room will require $7,908 per month on average.
  • A nursing home private room can cost up to $9,034.

So how do these costs compare to those who stay at home? While the following isn’t a full financial picture, the same survey shows average monthly costs for those who require similar care services at home, based on 40 hours per week usage: 

  • Homemaker services cost $4,506
  • A home health aide costs $4,680
  • Adult day care services cost $1,690

As you can see, there are some significant differences. But senior care is just one potential cost. Alongside it, you’ll also need to factor in other expenses in order to experience the many benefits of aging in place.

What Expenses Will You Need to Cover?

The monthly price tag for assisted living typically covers far more than just rent. In a senior care facility, you’d be paying one big bill for: 

  • Housing with universal design and all repairs, maintenance, and utilities included
  • Personal caregiving for help with daily living tasks
  • Medical monitoring and transportation
  • Food and meal preparation
  • Social activities and outings

At home, you’ll still need to pay for many of these same expenses—just not as one single check paid to the care facility. Let’s break down how these costs translate to an age-in-place plan.

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Housing and Related Expenses

Retiring as a homeowner with a paid-off mortgage is a goal for many, but in reality,

only about one-fifth of adults over the age of 65 own their homes outright.

For most older adults, monthly housing expenses will include: 

  • Mortgage payment
  • Homeowner’s insurance
  • Property tax
  • Utilities
  • Structural and outdoor maintenance 

Age-Related Renovations

The cost of home modifications, as well as repairs and upkeep, will depend on your home’s current condition and design. Age-related modifications may focus on factors such as: 

  • Reducing trips and falls 
  • Accommodating wheelchairs and walkers
  • Increasing safety and ease of use throughout the property and its features

Common aging in place home modifications include: 

  • Choosing nonslip, easy-clean flooring, particularly in bathrooms and kitchens
  • Increasing lighting 
  • Reducing walkway interruptions like door sills, flooring transitions, and unsecured rugs
  • Widening doorways
  • Adding handrails
  • Creating a step-free, ramped entryway
  • Installing rocker switches and lever door handles 
  • Adding voice controls

If you live in an older home, the above renovations could come in on the higher end of a $10,000 to $100,000 estimated range for age-related remodeling. However, there are many lower cost ways to make a home more accessible. To meet your needs with a smaller budget, you can: 

  • Request a home safety assessment from an occupational therapist or a certified aging in place specialist (CAPS) to prioritize modifications that you need most
  • Plan out changes over time
  • Make use of DIY family and friend resources
  • Look for grants or low/no-interest loans for senior home repairs through your local Area Agency on Aging 

Caregiver and Medical Costs

What amount of hands-on help will you need to continue living at home? Consider: 

  • House cleaning, laundry, and minor maintenance
  • Shopping, cooking, and dishwashing
  • Help with activities of daily living such as bathing and dressing
  • Assistance with daily medications or medical monitoring

Estimating your cost requires pricing out local providers and determining how many hours per day, week, or month, you’ll need each service. 

Transportation Costs

Family, friends, and neighbors willing to offer rides are a first choice for many, but price out options near you to provide the greatest range of independence and flexibility. 

Depending on what’s available in your county or neighborhood, you may be able to choose from: 

  • Taxi companies and rideshare providers like Uber, Lyft, Curb, or Flywheel
  • Community volunteer programs that offer low-cost or free rides for seniors
  • Private transportation companies that cater to medical and senior needs
  • ADA-required metro mobility services attached to public transit systems

Socialization and Activities

Being involved, learning, and socializing are all critical to physical, cognitive, and emotional health for seniors. Consider how to meet those needs in a way that fits your interests and come up with a budget that includes line items such as: 

  • Membership fees to community, art, education, or special interest organizations
  • Fees for virtual or in-person sporting, arts, or other classes and groups
  • Senior center day activities and programs
  • Outings to theaters, museums, or specialty tours
  • Transportation and meal costs associated with attending these activities

Fund the Cost of Aging in Place With Home Equity

While at-home services can be arranged easily nowadays, rising prices mean that home improvements and other costs related to aging in place require careful financial planning. That’s why home equity is a vital resource for those seeking to fund aging in place.

You can unlock your equity without leaving your home through Truehold's sale-leaseback. We’ll pay a competitive price and rent your home back to you for as long as you choose to renew the lease. 

In addition to converting equity to cash to cover aging in place needs, you can reduce stress and monthly housing expenses. Truehold will cover property tax, homeowners liability insurance, major repairs, and covered maintenance. 

Find out if a sale-leaseback is a good fit for your needs. Contact us today and a Truehold Advisor will connect with you to review your goals and unique situation with no obligation. 

Sources: 

1. AARP. New AARP Survey Reveals Older Adults Want to Age in Place. https://www.aarp.org/home-family/your-home/info-2021/home-and-community-preferences-survey.html 

2. Genworth. Cost of Care Survey. https://www.genworth.com/aging-and-you/finances/cost-of-care.html

3. Aging In Place. Aging In Place Vs. Assisted Living. https://aginginplace.org/aging-in-place-vs-assisted-living/

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