For seniors who cannot completely care for themselves but aren't thrilled about the idea of moving into senior housing, hiring an in-home senior care company may be the best option. Depending on the senior's required level of care, an in-home caregiver may need to be present for just a few hours each day or even a full 24 hours. When choosing a home-care company for your elderly loved one, however, there are a few big mistakes you'll want to avoid.
Completely Discounting Senior Housing as an Option
First of all, make sure your loved one is well aware of all of his or her options and their costs. Even though he or she may not be thrilled about the idea of moving into a senior housing facility, he or she may become more open to the idea when it's discovered that this option can cost about half of what it would cost to have a home-care company on staff at the seniors home at all times.
Not Having a Backup Plan
Even once a reputable caregiver is chosen for in-home care, it's always a good idea to have a backup plan. After all, what would happen in the event that your loved one's caregiver was in a car accident or otherwise unable to make it to your loved one's home? Would you be scrambling to find another caregiver or would the caregiver already have a backup plan in place? Most likely, if you hire from a home-care company, they'll be able to send out a backup caregiver in the event of an emergency. However, if you choose to hire independently, it'll probably be up to you to find a backup plan in the event of an emergency—so you'll want to make sure you've got something in place.
Not Requesting a Trial Period
These days, many senior home-care companies will want you to sign a contract before beginning service. However, since you have no real way of knowing whether or not a company's caregivers will be a good fit for your loved one, it's in your best interest to request a "trial" period from the company before agreeing to sign anything. Of course, you'll still be responsible to pay your fees during this trial period, but you won't be obligated to stick with that company beyond the trial period (usually two weeks is long enough) if things don't seem to be working out.
The best way to discover more about senior housing is to get in contact with a facility, such as Carriage Oaks Retirement Community, to address your questions and concerns. Soon, you and your elderly loved one will be able to make a decision that's best for your family.