Hourly Care for the Elderly

Watching a friend or family member grow old is never easy, especially when your loved one seems to be having difficulty with simple tasks. If someone you know is experiencing a similar situation, help is available for the elderly through qualified home care services, whether the need is daily or just a few hours a week.

Time for Elderly Care

Aging can rob you of more than time. If affects your mobility, memory and often the ability to do simple everyday tasks. But many elderly people who may experience difficulty living at home do not necessarily need around-the-clock care found in nursing homes or even ongoing care provided in assisted living facilities. For these individuals, there are a wide variety of in-home care agencies that provide services by the hour, making you or your loved one's living experience easier and safer.

Companionship Services

According to visitingangels.com, in-home care is roughly one third the cost of assisted living care. Hourly in-home care for the elderly can encompass a wide range of different services, both medical and nonmedical. Most agencies provide several different types of services. One of those services is called companionship care. These services may include visiting with the elderly resident, helping out with diet, meal planning and eating, grocery shopping and lists, playing cards and planning outings or visits with neighbors.

Personal Care Services

Personal care services are also available through most in-home elderly care agencies. Among the hourly services offered in the personal care category are assisting the client with walking, light housekeeping, taking out the garbage, laundry, washing up dishes, assisting with bathing, helping with bathroom services, making the bed, grooming and assisting with medication and medication reminders. Some caregivers may assist clients in taking care of pets, including walking, feeding and veterinarian transports, while others may actually cook and prepare meals.

Hourly Cost

Depending on geographic location, the particular agency that you use and the level of care you need, the average hourly rate for an in-home elderly care service can vary. According to rightathome.net, rates as of 2009 can range from $14.50 an hour to $23 an hour for basic companion care. For personal care services for the elderly, rates generally average between $15 an hour to $25 an hour. Most in-home care agencies for the elderly require a minimum number of hours, usually between three to four hours of care per week. Medicare does not cover these costs, but clients who have long-term care insurance may be covered for benefits. Some states offer adult day care, and for many of these day care centers, according to archrespite.org, the average cost for one day is $50 or $6.25 an hour for an eight-hour day.


The national U.S. push for Aging in Place, or allowing elderly citizens to remain in their homes as long as possible, is not only a benefit for those seniors who may otherwise be forced to go into a nursing home, it is also expected to provide a steady flow of jobs. According to homeinstead.com, the elderly population (85 years and older) is expected to triple between the years 2008 and 2050. This surge will create the need for more hourly employees in the home care agencies.