The Difference Between Assisted Living vs Home Care

Does your elderly loved one need more assistance with daily activities? Or do you think your aging parent isn’t safe to be alone at home alone? If you find yourself in any of these situations, it may be high time to look into different senior care options. We want to show you the differences between assisted living vs home care. We’ll also break down the cost of assisted living vs in home care – one of the biggest determining factors between the two.

In another blog post we discussed the differences between assisted living residential homes and larger facilities. We want to give you as much information as we can.  It’s important to see the the differences between assisted living options.

The Rise of Assisted Living vs Home Care

The U.S. Census Bureau conducted its census in 2010. Part of the results showed the number of seniors choosing assisted living homes vs home care is increasing. Meanwhile, the number of senior Americans who choose nursing home care is decreasing. Both assisted living and in-home care are two of the most popular senior living options in the market.

This change can be attributed to a number of factors.

  1. Medical technology is constantly improving. People are living longer and staying healthier.
  2. Choosing assisted living or in-home care is more practical. Both options generally  cost less than full nursing home care.


Assisted Living for Seniors

The assisted living buildings are usually similar to an actual home or an apartment building.

Assisted living homes are designed for seniors who need assistance when it comes to the activities of daily living, such as

  • Dressing
  • Assistance with meal preparations
  • Managing medications, or
  • Maintaining personal hygiene.

Seniors residing in assisted living communities generally do not need  constant medical supervision. Typically, they are independent adults, somewhat able-bodied, and range from mentally sharp to some mild dementia or Alzheimers. Our assisted living homes at A Paradise for Parents, can also accommodate residents with:

  • More moderate dementia or Alzheimer’s diseases
  • Parkinson’s
  • Diabetes
  • Limited mobility
  • Some forms of Cancer
  • Orthopaedic problems and
  • Generally afflictions of old age

Many seniors who move into our homes range in abilities from just needing a little help, to bed bound care. We also work with a lot of Hospice agencies for palliative care.

Differences Between Assisted Living vs Home Care

Most people think that the cost of assisted living vs in home care makes in home care the more desirable option. That is true if they only need to bring in a caregiver for a few hours a day. However, seniors have their good days and bad days. As they age, seniors may need an extra support.

Sometimes, these ‘bad days’ occur when the caregiver isn’t on duty.

24/7 In-Home care is wonderful if people can afford it. However, paying an hourly rate can really add up. Especially if the caregiver needs to be there for more than a few hours a day. According to Caregiver List, the typical hourly rate is about $20 an hour. If you hire a care giver for 4 hours a day in a 30 day month, you will pay about $2400/ month ($80/day x 30 days). That is a reasonable expense. If your loved one only needs help a few hours a day, it may be the perfect solution.

The differences in cost of assisted living vs in home care really come out when you think about 24/7 care. Which many seniors need. At $20/hour x 24 hours x 30 days, suddenly the cost goes to about $14,400 per month. That is outside the budget of most families.

Many in-home care companies help solve this by providing a daily rate. Caregiver List gives that rate at around $200/day average. That comes out to about $6000/month – still pretty high for a lot of people.

The benefits are that your loved one stays at home in a familiar surrounding.

Another difference in assisted living vs home care is that assisted living communities are fully equipped to accommodate your elderly loved one’s changing needs. The availability of staff ensures that your loved one is fully taken care of 24/7.

Making Sure Elderly People Stay Social

Assisted living offers a wide range of activities for their senior residents. The differences between assisted living activities vs home care are group events. Many In-Home care activities don’t involve other adults of a similar age. Some adults are introverts and are fine just being with a caregiver. In that case, in-home care may be the better option.

With both in-home care and assisted living, the staff interacts with them throughout the day. They quickly notice when something is different with their residents or when a change has occurred that may lead to serious health problems.

The differences between assisted living and in home care comes when you consider in-home care may not be 24/7 due to cost or need. Assisted living homes are required by state licensing to provide 24/7 care. Constant care and monitoring is beneficial for seniors who have chronic illnesses. Examples include diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or congestive heart failure.

Some Similarities Between Assisted Living vs Home Care

Both in-home care and assisted living can provide residents various services, such as

  • Access to transportation
  • Housekeeping, and
  • Laundry to mention a few

These everyday tasks can eventually become exhausting, for a senior to do them on their own. Depending on the in-home company or the assisted living home, these services may be included in the price or may be an additional charge.


While in-home care lets your loved one remain in the comforts of their home, this doesn’t mean they will get the independence they want. Most people think that remaining in their home for as long as possible guarantees their independence. However, if a senior’s social life revolves around the people visiting them in their home, or they rarely go out and participate in various activities, this is an indication that their independence is limited.

Asking an in-home care company to coordinate social events from a senior’s home is one service they can offer.

Assisted living facilities encourage senior residents to become more independent. They provide various opportunities of engagement, such as

  • Activities to keep them physically healthy
  • Support groups
  • Social events
  • Activities to keep them mentally sharp, and more.

Residents are not required to participate but are highly encouraged to do so. They remain independent with the knowledge that help is readily available when they need it.

Benefits of In-Home Care

In-home care is beneficial for seniors who just got out from the hospital. Or any senior requiring any form of assistance over a short period of time? It also works well for seniors who follow a consistent schedule with their care. Maybe they need baths several times per week at a set time. A nursing aide or caregiver can come in on a designated time and provide the care they need . In-home care is also useful when family members need a break from taking care of their senior loved one.

The specific care needs can be identified, and a caregiver can be scheduled to perform the tasks.



Which Care Should I Choose?

Which senior care is better? It ultimately all boils down to the senior’s budget and the level of care needed. The best approach in choosing the right care option is to do a cost comparison. Assisted living facilities and in-home care agencies will be more than willing to help you out. If the numbers are close, choose the type of senior care that will give your elderly loved the best quality of life possible.

If you want to know more about assisted living options, A Paradise for Parents staff and our resources can answer all your questions. Don’t hesitate to give us a call at (623) 295-9890 or email us at to know more about the services we offer. You can also fill out an online form located on our homepage. We’d be happy to assist you in your search for an assisted living facility for your loved one.

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Picture of From Pilot to Paradise: Meet Hal Cranmer!

From Pilot to Paradise: Meet Hal Cranmer!

Mr. Cranmer went from Air Force Special Operations Pilot to Airline Pilot to running a multimillion dollar manufacturing plant after 9/11 ended his flying career. Now he is bringing his business expertise to his true passion - taking care of seniors in his 'A Paradise for Parents' assisted living homes in Surprise and Goodyear, AZ. Read Hal's crazy career story, 'From Air Force Pilot to Assisted Living Owner'. Click the button to send Hal a message!

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