Aging is a privilege afforded to few, as many succumb to age-related diseases. Seniors need more care and support than ever, especially as they age.

But, taking your parents out of their home is a tough decision. You know they’re not living forever, so you want to do what’s best for their well-being. Will they need a nursing home? Will they need an assisted living facility, or can they handle living alone?

Before answering these questions, you must know the difference between assisted living vs. nursing home costs. The decision affects your family member for years to come, so find a service that best fits your needs.

While these care options are often considered the same, they are different. Not only are assisted living vs. nursing home costs very different but there are other differences in the care they offer.

Knowing the differences is crucial if deciding on either of these care options for your aging loved one. Let’s explore the differences so you can make the best decision for your loved one.

Assisted Living vs. Nursing Home: The Definition 

What is assisted living and what is a nursing home? Assisted living is for people who need help with activities of daily living, such as bathing, dressing, eating, and using the restroom.

Nursing homes are for people who need more attention and supervision than assisted living, such as those who are unable to care for themselves or have medical conditions that need constant monitoring. Nursing homes also have a higher staff-to-patient ratio and more 24-hour on-site nursing care than assisted living. 

Differing Levels of Care

Nursing homes provide a higher level of care, while assisted living facilities provide a lower level of care. It means that nursing home costs are generally higher than assisted living costs.

Another difference is that nursing homes are more restrictive than assisted living facilities. It means there are extra costs associated with nursing homes, such as entrance fees and monthly charges.

Finally, nursing homes have longer lengths of stay than assisted living facilities. It means nursing home costs can add up over time, while payments every month are for assisted living costs.

Types of Facilities

There are also differences in the cost of nursing homes and assisted living facilities depending on the type of facility. For example, nursing homes that provide skilled nursing care are more expensive than ones that provide custodial care.

Assisted living facilities that give memory care or other specialized services are more costly than those that only supply regular services. Also, assisted living facilities to provide a more free lifestyle for seniors, with various amenities and help as needed. These residences cost less than nursing homes, which offer higher levels of care and 24-hour medical supervision.

Cost Considerations 

The average cost of a private room in a nursing home is $7,698 per month, compared to a private room in an assisted living facility which is $3,628 per month. The cost is more than double the cost of an assisted living facility.

The main reason for this cost difference is the level of care provided in a nursing home. Nursing homes provide 24-hour care, while assisted living facilities provide a lower level of care.

Of course, there are exceptions to every rule. Some assisted living facilities are quite luxurious and expensive, while some nursing homes are more cheap. It depends on the specific facility and the level of care required.

Difference in Location

The cost of nursing homes and assisted living facilities varies depending on the region. Nursing homes are more expensive in metropolitan areas than in rural areas.

The cost of living, in general, is higher in urban areas. But, there can be significant differences in price between different metropolitan areas. For example, the median cost of a nursing home in New York City is $137,000 per year, while the median cost in Dallas is only $80,000 per year.

Also, there are significant differences in prices between different states. For example, the median cost of an assisted living facility in California is $48,000 per year, while the median cost in Florida is only $30,000 per year.

Amenities Available

Nursing homes offer a more institutional setting, focusing on medical care. Assisted living is more of a home-like setup, focusing on social and recreational activities.

Nursing homes are more expensive than assisted living, but the intensity of care and amenities available can vary between facilities. For example, some nursing homes may offer private rooms and premium amenities, while others may have more basic accommodations.

Assisted living costs can also vary depending on the services and amenities offered. In general, assisted living is less expensive than nursing homes, but the cost of living in an assisted living facility can still be high. If you are living near Surprise, Arizona, you can check out the Koelsch Senior Communities for their amenities.

Insurance Coverage

Insurance coverage for nursing homes is much more comprehensive than for assisted living. Most insurance plans will cover most of the costs associated with nursing home care as it is considered a necessary medical expense.

On the other hand, assisted living is not covered by insurance as it is a lifestyle choice. But, some insurance plans may offer limited coverage for assisted living expenses. It is vital to check with your insurance provider to see what type of coverage you have.

Assisted Living vs. Nursing Home Costs: The Verdict 

Both assisted living and nursing homes provide care for those who cannot live independently. There are several key differences between the two options.

Assisted living facilities are typically much less expensive than nursing homes. Additionally, nursing homes provide a higher level of care, including around-the-clock medical supervision, while assisted living facilities do not.

When making the option, you must consider the difference between assisted living vs. nursing home costs. Consult with a trusted expert to help you. Read more of our articles for more information.