How Being A Caregiver For Family Can Affect Your Finances
Should a family member or loved one require full-time care, the strain on you may become significant, and the decision about what to do, difficult. Whether it’s an elderly parent who can no longer take care of themselves, a family member who was in an accident, or a loved one with special needs, the emotional and financial tolls can be great.
When looking to avoid the costs of hiring a full-time caregiver, many people will choose to take the role of caregiver themselves. While the personal benefits of doing so are immeasurable, many people fail to take into account many of the direct costs that they will still have to incur.
Even without paying for a nurse or a live-in facility, when you become a full-time caregiver, you will still incur a significant level of out-of-pocket costs. According to the AARP, these out-of-pocket costs could average nearly $7,000 per year. These costs account for equipment for medical care and comfort, as well as household accommodations.
Lost Opportunity for Income
On top of the direct costs added to your household’s budget, caregivers could potentially lose a portion of their income. Depending on the situation, the caregiver might have to reduce the number of hours they work or even leave their job temporarily.
Adding to the financial costs, many insurance policies will have a limit on how much they will pay out during these times of medical hardship. A family who has budgeted for a certain amount of out-of-pocket medical costs will feel the financial effects when those limits are reached, and they are responsible for paying the rest of the accumulating costs.
On top of that direct money saved, studies by the American Psychological Association have found that people with family caregivers, rather than professionally hired caregivers, tend to have reduced instances of hospital intakes and lower average hospital stays when they are admitted. Those benefits are hard to quantify in terms of happiness and quality of life. It’s important for families to really weigh all the pros and cons of every arrangement to determine what’s best for them.
If you’re navigating the multitude of caregiving options available for your family member and aren’t sure how your insurance policy will factor in – get in touch with Schechner Lifson today to discuss your options!