Finding an aged care home that fits your personal needs, preferences, and budget can be challenging. That’s why our team is here to help you every step of the way. We offer complete transparency of associated costs, daily fees and government assistance.
We’re happy to help you with any questions you have.
There is a range of potential fees that you may be subject to when registering for an aged care home in Melbourne. These include things like the basic daily fee, the means-tested care fee and additional or extra service fees.
It’s always best to plan for the unexpected. Some other additional costs to factor into your budget include:
Here is your guide to understanding aged care home fees.
In every aged care home, a basic daily fee is paid on top of your accommodation cost. This fee covers your basic living needs, including meals, laundry and cleaning, and utility costs like power and telecommunications.
The Australian Government sets a maximum basic daily fee that aged care facilities can charge, currently set at $54.69 a day or $19,961.85 per year.
Services Australia sets this fee at 85% of a single Age Pension. The basic daily fee is the same for everyone (even if they don’t receive an Age Pension) and is increased twice a year, March 20th and September 20th, to match the rising cost of living.
Once you submit an Income and Asset Assessment through Centrelink, you will not only be assessed on whether you are eligible for any subsidies but you’ll also be assessed on whether the means-tested care fee is applicable.
If you have to pay the income-tested care fee, it means the government has determined you need to pay extra towards your day-to-day care, but only if you can afford it. Whether this fee applies to you is dependent on your financial situation and if you have a higher level of assets or income. The means-tested care fee will be between $0 and $259.26 per day.
It can take the government some time to calculate the amount you may need to pay for the means-tested care fee. Therefore, you and the aged care home you choose will be notified by letter when the price has been calculated, and payment will be backdated to the date you entered into care.
All aged care providers can charge fees for your accommodation to cover the home's maintenance costs and amenities. Each nursing home sets this daily accommodation price, and it is advertised clearly in the accommodation cost. At MACG, our daily accommodation rate ranges between $27.62 and $88.55.
Many factors influence aged care accommodation costs, including the room size and type, facilities available and property prices. The Income and Asset Assessment will determine whether the Australian Government will subsidise this fee or fully pay for your accommodation costs based on your income earnings and assets.
Many aged care homes in Melbourne offer additional services, similar to a hotel experience. Some common additional services include beauty and hairdressing, satellite television, internet, gyms, pools, workshops and alcohol.
Some nursing homes may allow you to pick and choose the services you want, so you only pay for what you use, whereas others may have an additional package.
These service fees are set by the aged care provider and aren’t subsidised by the government. Therefore, it’s best to consider these as out-of-pocket costs you will need to cover.
Many aged care homes provide extra services that allow residents to upgrade their stay. Things that may be part of an extra service package include extended menus and drink options, higher quality linens and room furnishings.
Extra services usually come in a bundle and can either apply to specific room types or an entire retirement village. These extra services are not government subsidised.
The government provides a few aged care subsidy programs to assist residents who struggle to afford aged care support. The main program you can apply for is Financial Hardship Assistance. If you are eligible, the Australian Government will assist in paying some or all of your aged care fees (this includes respite care). Find out if you are eligible for Financial Hardship Assistance.
The Income and Asset Assessment is a means test set by the Australian Government to decide if you are eligible for a Commonwealth subsidy for part or all of your aged care home fees.
In this means test, your income and assets are evaluated. What is considered ‘income’ includes but is not limited to financial investments, age, disability or service pensions, income support payments, bonds, shares, your superannuation, family trusts and super funds.
Assets include properties you own (including your own home), investment properties, private or partnered businesses, and more. You will be asked a range of questions regarding your income and assets to determine your eligibility for subsidies.
You can complete the Income and Assets Assessment online through My Aged Care.
The assessment is broken down into three steps and is fairly quick to complete. The same form is used for all support types, whether you’re looking for short or long-term care or support in the home.
To complete the assessment, you will need your Medicare card. You can also organise for a representative to complete the application on your behalf.
The online assessment should not take longer than 20 minutes of your time. However, after submitting the assessment, you will receive a call to arrange a complete evaluation and review of your application.
There are three different ways you can pay your aged care fees:
MACG’s preferred method of payment is via direct debit. Therefore, a direct debit form will be provided to you during the pre-admissions meeting.
Monthly statements are issued to permanent residents (or their representatives) at the beginning of the month and detail the debit amount. This direct debit is processed on the 15th of every month (bar public holidays or weekends in which the payment will be taken the following business day).
If you have any questions about the admissions process, cost of care, or would like to book a tour, please contact our Admissions Team.
If you find you’re unable to afford residential aged care costs, there are a number of avenues you can explore for assistance. If your Income and Asset Assessment determines you can’t afford aged care services, the Australian Government can provide subsidies for aged care support.
You may be eligible for Financial Hardship Assistance to partially or fully cover the basic daily fee, means-tested care fee and accommodation costs. Each case is assessed individually and depends on the type of care you need.
You can also consult with a Financial Information Services (FIS) representative. The FIS is an entirely free Australian Government program that helps you make informed decisions about your finances.
If you require assistance or more information, please contact any of the departments below.
You may also wish to gain specialist advice from an Aged Care Financial Planner to restructure your finances to your best advantage when entering care.
See your local MACG home and get a feel for the community.Call (03) 9428 2800
If you have any questions about us or our residential aged care homes, we would love to help.