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Home Care Costs and Comparisons

retire-at-home-halton-oakville-burlington-costs-comparisonsCosts and Comparisons

Eventually, we must all make health care choices for our loved ones or ourselves. Luckily, there are several options to consider when it comes to senior care. There are retirement homes, long-term care facilities, family caregivers, or hired caregivers. Whatever the choice may be, cost will most likely be a primary consideration.

Cost Overview of Home Care Services:


Unfortunately, Canada does not publicly fund home care on a universal basis. In Ontario less than 5% of total health expenditures go towards home care services. This is where private care comes in. Private care is typically contracted once government subsidies and family members can no longer provide the quality of care their loved one needs.


Research shows that an estimated 26% of Canadians cared for a family member or close friend with a serious health problem, and those family caregivers provide 80% of care at home, supplementing the government-funded service. Research also shows that the average family caregiver spends and average of 20 hours per week caring for their loved ones over a period of 4 years; while one quarter of caregivers spends 40 hours/week.

A good private care agency should be able to work around subsidized hours and family schedules to fill in the time family caregivers cannot be there. 150,000 Ontarians purchase an additional 20 million hours of home care services annually in order to remain in their homes, proving that supplementing additional care needs through private care is a common occurrence.

The average client of Retire-At-Home spends approximately $1500-$2000 per month to remain at home. Some clients spend as little as $80 per month to help with some basic needs such as housekeeping or foot care. At the other end of the spectrum, some clients receive 24/7 support when faced with a crisis or palliative situations. With no contracts, the service can be as flexible as you need, ensuring that you maximize the service required, and minimize cost wherever possible.

Cost Overview of Institutional Care:

For those that choose other options, such as a retirement home or nursing home, there are many options to choose from. Here is a breakdown of Independent Living, Assisted Living, and Long-term Care costs in the Halton Region (costs may vary and change).

Independent Living – Non-gov’t regulated, client pays privately
  • Range $2075 – $4750
  • $550 – $1600 for additional person
  • Meals can be available but not often included
  • No personal support
  • 24-hr staffing for emergencies
  • Social/recreation programs often available
  • Availability of or include housekeeping/linens
  • Retirement Home (Assisted Living)
Independent Living – Non-gov’t regulated, client pays privately
  • Range $1760 – $5500
  • $600 – $1000 for additional person
  • Includes all meals, housekeeping, laundry
  • Personal support and assistance with activities of daily living, meds are available for purchase
  • 24-hr staffing for emergencies
  • Social/recreation programs
Long Term Care (Nursing Home)
  • Government regulated, client pays the accommodation cost
  • Require government assessment to determine eligibility
  • Range $1620 – $2170
  • 24-hr care is available, however it is usually minimal with an average ratio of 12:1 patients to caregivers
  • Includes all meals, housekeeping, laundry
  • Over 20,000 people on waiting lists, often waiting a 2-3 years.
Example of Cost Comparison between Retire-At-Home and a Retirement Home:
  1. Client requires 3 hours per day of Personal Care, help with meals, medication reminders.
  2. Average Price of Retirement Home in the Halton Region = approx. $4000 per month (for one person).
  3. Cost of hourly care = $29/hour.

Option1 – Retirement Home:

  • Client moves to Retirement Home on one-year contract
  • Assume 1 hour per day of Personal Care included, 2 hours per day are charged
  • Meals included
  • = $4000 + (2 hours x 30 days x $29/hour)
  • = $4000 + $1740
  • = $5740

Option2 – Retire-At-Home:

  • Client hires Retire-At-Home Services, remains in their own home, no contracts
  • Grocery bill for one person = $300/month
  • Utilities = $400/month
  • Emergency Response System installed = $40/month
  • = 3 hours x 30 days x $29/hour + $300 + $400 + $40
  • = $3350
If you would like to learn more about the costs of home care and how we can customize a care plan suited to your needs and budget, please contact us today for a Free Consultation!

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