Residential Aged Care Costs
The Australian Government regulates the maximum costs you’ll be required to pay and in some circumstances, subsidises the costs of many aged care services. However, if your financial situation allows, you will be required to contribute a set amount to the cost of your care.
Basic Daily Fee
A basic daily fee helps to cover the costs of day-to-day living including meals, cleaning, laundry, heating and cooling.
The maximum basic daily fee for new residents entering aged care (including respite) is $ 52.25 . This rate increases on March 20th and September 20th every year to coincide with changes to the Age Pension.
The maximum daily fee rate is 85% of the single person basic Age Pension.
When you move into a residential aged care facility, the Services Australia (DHS) will send you a letter confirming your fees.
Means-Tested Care Fee:
The Means-Tested Care Fee is an additional contribution towards the cost of aged care that you may need to pay.
The Services Australia will conduct an assessment of your income and assets and will then advise you of the amount.
There are caps that will apply to your means-tested care fee – both yearly and lifetime. Once you have reached these caps, you are not required to pay anymore means-tested care fees.
If you have been receiving Home Care services and paying means-tested care fees prior to moving into residential aged care, this will also contribute to your yearly and lifetime caps.
Additional Services Fees:
Some aged care providers will provide additional services that are not covered in the Basic Daily Fee or Accommodation payment. Some additional services may include Foxtel, daily newspaper delivery, more meal choices and a higher standard of accommodation.
Extra Service fees are not regulated and are agreed upon between you and your chosen aged care provider.
Aged Care Accommodation Payment
The Accommodation Payment is used to cover the cost of your accommodation in the aged care home. In some cases, the Australian Government will cover all or part of your aged care accommodation costs. If you do not qualify for any Australian Government subsidies, you will be required to pay the accommodation price agreed with the aged care service provider.
If you are a member of a couple, half of your combined income and assets will be considered when determining your eligibility for Government assistance.
The Accommodation Payment is quoted by an aged care service provider as a:
- RAD (Refundable Accommodation Deposit)
- DAP (Daily Accommodation Payment)
You can choose to pay the RAD in full, the full DAP or a combination of the two. If you pay a combination of both, the DAP will be reduced. The conversion of a RAD into a DAP is based on an interest rate (MPIR) set by the Government.
From the date you are admitted into residential aged care, you will start paying the full DAP payment unless otherwise specified. You have 28 days from admission to decide how you wish to pay for your accommodation.
If you choose to pay for your accommodation as a refundable accommodation payment (RAD) this money will be paid back to you (or your estate) if you leave or pass away.
The aged care service provider holds the RAD in trust for you which is fully refundable. In some ways, the RAD is like an interest-free loan to the aged care provided which is not repayable until you leave.
There is no risk with getting your RAD back, as repayment is guaranteed by the Government - provided you have paid the RAD to a service accredited by the Commonwealth Government.