Most of the individuals I work with that are still in their home want to stay there. The ongoing COVID issues have made many individuals and their families second guess community care. Finding a good solution that works is harder than it might seem, but it is worth the effort.
For solo individuals with a cognitive issue the reality is that staying in their home can be more expensive than community options. It also creates a different form of stress on the family and care team as the risks of living alone create opportunities for major catastrophes. I’ve arrived and had to call 911, battled predatory vendors, and cleaned up identity theft. Had someone been in the home, the impact of these could have been minimized or even avoided.
An ideal solution seems to be having someone live in the home. Most of my clients have unused bedrooms/bath(s) that served the family when they were raising kids and enjoying early retirement. Early on, when intermittent help is needed, most do not like the assortment of personal care assistants that have come into their home to help them. However, if you don’t need more permanent home care, you often face a shifting stream of inexperienced caregivers. The experienced caregivers usually hold out and get assigned to regular and more permanent schedules. This makes it even harder to integrate care when it is needed.
I started wondering how to use the empty bedrooms effectively in the homes of client’s to benefit them. Could we find someone that could bring energy and socialization into the home, and create an intergenerational relationship that benefits both? Is there someone in your extended friends and family that could fill this role?
Most states have rules for domestic employees, which this agreement would fall under. Virginia laws encourage these arrangements. Key components of an agreement should include:
- Creating key tasks and time needed to fulfill these duties
- Setting an hourly rate for duties
- Creating time off and plans for when the individual is not staying in the home
- Finding a lawyer to put an agreement in place (most elder law attorneys can do this and you can find them here NAELA.org)
- Rounding our insurance to cover your risks and employment law
We just implemented this solution at one of my clients and it has already been a huge relief to know that there is someone in the home on a daily basis. The ongoing engagement is also going to benefit the homeowner. The best part is that we will also have minimized the costs of care.
Here is copy of the agreement the state of Virginia offers to help put an agreement together. You can see if your state offers this resource, on your favorite browser, type in “live in caregiver agreement” and see what may find.
I am happy to get on the phone and tell you more about how we made this work. Use this option to book a time on my schedule.
I’m hopeful that this solution might work for you. Provided.