Having a carer come to visit you in your home can make a huge difference to your life, especially if you have difficulty walking or getting around. It can help you stay living independently in your own home.
This type of care is known as homecare or domiciliary care or sometimes home help.
Homecare is very flexible. You might need a carer for only an hour a week or for several hours a day. You might need a live-in carer.
You might want to consider care at home if:
A carer can visit you at home to help you with all kinds of things including:
This is slightly different to homecare and means day-to-day domestic tasks that you may need a helping hand with such as:
You might want some home help instead of or as well as homecare.
If you want the council to help with homecare for you, start by asking for a needs assessment.
Your needs assessment will help decide whether you're eligible for care.
If you're eligible, the council may recommend help at home from a paid carer. They will arrange the homecare for you.
If you're not eligible for care, the council will still give you free advice about where you can get help in your community.
Even if you're intending to make arrangements yourself with an agency or private carer, it's still a good idea to have a needs assessment as it will help you to explain to the agency or carer what kind of help you need.
Depending on your circumstances, the council may contribute to the cost of homecare or you may have to pay for it yourself.
What you will contribute depends on your income and savings. The council will work this out in a financial assessment.
If the council is paying for some or all of your homecare, they will give you a care and support plan.
This sets out what your needs are, how they will be met and your personal budget (the amount the council thinks your care should cost).
You can choose to receive your personal budget as a direct payments each month. This gives you the control to employ someone you know to care for you at home rather than using a homecare agency, though you'll then have responsibilities as an employer.
If you aren't eligible for the council to contribute to your homecare costs, you will have to pay for it yourself.
Check if you're eligible for benefits.
Some, such as Attendance Allowance and Personal Independence Payments, aren't means tested and they can help you meet the costs of homecare.
Find out how to apply for: