If you become ill or develop mobility limitations in your senior years, you may need the higher level of care offered by an assisted living facility. These facilities are staffed around the clock to help you with daily tasks if your loved ones cannot care for you regularly. It is always a smart idea to expect the unexpected and plan ahead for your retirement needs. To help you prepare for the possibility of assisted living, you need to know the estimated costs and whether Medicare and Social Security help cover them.
At SeniorSmart, we understand that trying to decipher what Medicare and Social Security cover for seniors can be confusing at times. We provide resources to help our members navigate the financial costs of retirement living, including the possibility of needing a higher level of care. If you feel overwhelmed by the prospect of finding affordable assisted living options, call us today at 205.460.1124 to take advantage of our concierge-level services.
Does Medicare Pay for Assisted Living?
With Medicare being designed to assist seniors, you will likely wonder if Medicare in Alabama helps with the cost of assisted living or other senior living options.
- Medicare does not pay for assisted living.
- Medicare will not cover independent or retirement living costs.
- Medicare will pay for expenses at a facility needed for temporary care.
- Medicare Part A will cover up to 100 days at a skilled nursing facility (SNF) or a rehabilitation center after an injury or illness.
Some states provide financial assistance for assisted living through Optional State Supplements added to Social Security benefits. Alabama does not offer this assistance. However, other state programs can help with your living costs.
How Much Does Assisted Living Cost in Alabama?
The average cost of assisted living in Alabama is just over $3000 a month, with Birmingham being one of the costliest areas. Choosing an assisted living facility outside of major cities can make it more affordable. If you are on a tight budget, sticking with smaller cities and towns can cut your assisted living expenses by nearly one-third.
How Can You Pay for Assisted Living in Alabama?
Not everyone has family members that can commit to providing daily assistance for the long term. In addition, not everyone can afford to pay for an assisted living facility out of pocket. If you require long-term care (LTC) in an assisted living facility, there are options to help you cover the costs.
Here are some options for covering the costs of assisted living:
- Sell your house and other assets.
- Home equity “bridge” loans can help if you have urgent assisted-living costs that cannot wait until after your home is sold.
- Long-term care insurance can cover assisted-living expenses. Coverage can be pricey, and you may need to be in good health to purchase certain policies.
- If you qualify for Medicaid, it can cover the costs of nursing home care as well as some home health care. It may also cover assisted living if it can be obtained at a lower cost than a nursing home. Alabama has an Elderly and Disabled Medicaid Waiver that provides services for qualified seniors aged 65 and up and those with disabilities.
SeniorSmart: Helping You Budget for Assisted-Living Costs
When you are on a fixed income, there is often not much room left for unexpected costs. When you sign up for SeniorSmart concierge-level member services, we can help guide you through the costs of higher levels of care, including assisted living in Alabama, and help you financially prepare yourself for the unexpected. Call us today at 205.460.1124 to speak with one of our retirement planning experts about preparing for long-term care expenses.