Many people reach an age where it just is not possible to live alone, and a day dawns when their bags are packed and they make the single journey into a care home. It is a sad day and one in which most of us have had thoughts, or first hand experience with our parents or grand parents. The greatest fear after thinking that we may become a resident in a care home is the fear of wondering how we are going to pay for it.
Even the most basic homes cost hundreds of pounds a week. However, we would like some home comfort, maybe a view or living close to the family, but that will probably be more expensive.
The government would like to help but they are just as strapped for cash as the rest of us. If you have assets (including your house), in excess of £23,250 then you have to contribute until your assets are reduced to £14,250. The government will take all your assets from the moment you walk through the door of the care home. You could say it is a care cost tax at 100% on assets in excess of £14,250!
Whichever statistics you look at, one in three women and one in four men will go into care, eventually. Many more of us can expect to live to the ripe old age of one hundred than ever before. Therefore, the likelihood of going into care is real, and so is the spectre of finding the cash to pay for it.
So what can you do about it?
Firstly, you could do nothing. Why not? This is the same attitude as that shown towards making a Will. The difference is that although intestacy is bad enough, after paying for the care fees, there is little chance of any money remaining in the estate. Your hard-earned inheritance that you wanted to leave to your children has gone to the care home.
Secondly, some people think that transferring their home into their children’s name means that they no longer have assets to draw upon and pay the fees. This is completely wrong and in addition to running the risk of losing control of the house where they live, the children might divorce and forced to give half of their assets to their partner. It is likely the children are required to sell the house; forcing the parents out of their own home! In addition, it gives the children a capital gains tax problem.
Thirdly, you could wait until you actually go into care and buy an Immediate Care Cost plan for about £50,000!
Fourthly, you could make a Will with a Property Protection Trust.
There is another way! Find out later.