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Residential care

Residential care

It can be daunting choosing a new place to live when you are feeling vulnerable, frail, or have complicating medical conditions – but know there are options, and the final decision should be yours. Here, you’ll find information about the different care options available in most residential care facilities in New Zealand (including rest homes, dementia and hospital level care), how care is paid for, and provide an insight into what you can expect from living in a care home.

Who pays for your care home

Residential care
Financial means assessment - income & asset testing

Income and asset testing refers to a financial assessment undertaken by those who require residential care and who: are unable to afford to pay the required fees and need to apply for a Residential Care Subsidy (RCS), those who are close to this position or, those who require clarification as...

Residential care
Financial Means Assessment form - Work and Income

In New Zealand, a financial means assessment is a process used to determine an individual's eligibility for a residential care subsidy , which helps cover the costs of long-term residential care services. This assessment evaluates the person's financial situation and determines their ability to contribute towards the cost of their...

Residential care
How much does living in a residential care home cost?

The July 2023 figures (known as ‘financial contribution’ ) cover the cost to 'the eligible person' of a standard bed/room and range from $1355.76 to $1464.26 per week (depending on where they live in the country). This amount is also known as the Maximum Contribution. (MC) Many care homes now...

Residential care
I'm going to a rest home? Will I have to pay for my care?

You are responsible for paying for, or contributing towards, residential care services just as you would pay for whatever you needed if you lived elsewhere. There is a maximum amount that you will have to pay (as long as provider meets certain requirements which all providers listed in the residential...

Residential care
I’m shocked. The cost of residential care seems high. Is it?

We understand, the cost for living in a residential care home does seem high, however a bit of a reality check shows that it’s not at all. The following is a comparison with someone living in a hotel and buying in home support services three times a week. No other...

Residential care
Standard rooms. Can the price differ from place to place?

If the care homes are in the same defined geographical region then the quick answer is 'no'. The maximum you have to pay for your contracted care, basic accommodation, meals, laundry etc. is known as the Maximum Contribution. These payment rates, which vary according to where you live (the regions...

Residential care
What is a care apartment?

A care suite (previously may have been called a care apartment) is technically a retirement village offering with care components governed by the Age-Related Residential Care (ARRC) Agreement. It offers the same type of care as a care home and is bound by the same rules. As this is a...

Residential care
What is a premium room?

A premium room (or a room that has premium accommodation charges) is a room that has features that are NOT required under the Age Related Residential Care Agreement (ARRC) (i.e., they are over and above the standard features and services). Important: Those who pay for premium accommodation do not get...

Residential care
What is a RAD?

A RAD or Refundable Accommodation Deposit is an alternative to paying premium charges, and is offered by some facilities. It is a single upfront payment that is refunded in full after your room is vacated. Find out more about premium accommodation charges here. Find rest home bed vacancies on Eldernet...

Residential care
What is a Residential Care Loan?

If owning your former home puts you over the Asset Threshold and your other assets are under it, you may be able to get a government funded Res­idential Care Loan to cover your fees. Applications are considered case by case, are discretionary and must fit the scheme’s criteria. You will...

Residential care
What is the asset limit for the rest home subsidy in 2024?

If you are single the limit is $273,628 If you are a couple and you both need care the limit is $273,628 If you are a couple, and one of you needs care there are two options: This option is often chosen by those who have more limited assets. The...

Residential care
What is the Maximum Contribution?

Everyone in a certified and contracted care home is required to pay for their accommodation and services. If you have little to no assets the government uses your NZ Super to pay for your care. If you have assets and/or income over the required thresholds, you are required to contribute/pay...

Residential care
What is the Residential Care Subsidy?

The Residential Care Subsidy is financial assistance that may be available for those over 65 needing residential care and who meet eligibility criteria (including health and financial criteria). NOTE: It is distinct from the Residential Support Subsidy that may be available for those under 65. The Residential Care Subsidy –...

Residential care
Who pays for dementia care in New Zealand?

If someone has been assessed as requiring dementia level care in New Zealand, they are responsible for paying, or contributing, towards the cost of that care. People with available funds will pay privately for this care; others will have the cost of care subsidised through government funding. For those who...