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Find out which financial support route is for you

How long-term care financial support works

The amount of financial help, and when you'll receive it depends on your income, assets and what level of care and support you need.

You can receive financial support in one of three ways, route A, B or C, whichever is most appropriate to your financial situation.

Route A

If your assets, including the value of your home, are below £419,000, you may be entitled to financial assistance as soon as you start to receive care at an agreed level. 

If you:

  • live in a care home, the scheme can help with your care costs and your living costs in the care home
  • live in your own home, the scheme can help with your care costs
  • need help with living costs, you can receive income support payments at the same time as long term care payments

The maximum weekly benefits are in the table at the bottom of this page.

You'll need to complete a financial assessment when you apply. We'll collect information from you, and your partner (if you have one) to check the level of support you are entitled to. You may be required to use part of your income towards your own costs. 

The assessment will look at:

  • your income
  • the value of your home (if you own your own home, you will never be made to sell it)
  • the value of your other assets including savings, investments
  • assets that you have given away in the past (anything of a value over £5,000 including multiple gifts), this includes if you have given away your home at any time in the past and continued to live in the home, or received rent for the property

The full value of your home may be included in your financial assessment. This includes transferring your home to other family members.

We'll review your support periodically as you may become eligible for additional financial support after an initial waiting period.

If you're moving into a care home and your family home will be empty, we advise that you rent your home to provide income to cover your care costs. If the home is left empty your financial assessment will include the rent you could be receiving. You'll need to make up this shortfall from savings or financial support from other family members.

Route A: long-term care scheme information booklet

Easy read: long term care financial route A

Route B

If your assets and the value of your home are worth more than £419,000 and you also have savings of more than £25,000, you'll need to pay for your own care costs for a period of time. You should apply for the Long-Term Care Scheme as soon as you need long-term care. 

You do not need to complete a financial assessment. You'll start to receive financial support at the end of the waiting period.

After the waiting period, the scheme will pay towards your care costs, but you'll still need to cover the cost of your living expenses (board and lodgings) if you're living in a care home or your own domestic expenses if you're living in your own home.

How long is the waiting period? 

How long you'll need to pay for your care depends on your assessed care level. Once you have applied for the scheme, we'll keep a record of when your care has started, your assessed care level and tell you the exact number of weeks you need to pay for your care for.

The waiting period will change if you and your partner are both in need of long-term care.

​Waiting period​
Assessed care level
​Number of weeks before you receive benefit (approximate)
​Level 1
​148 weeks (just under 3 years)
​Level 2
​97 weeks (around 1 year and 10 months)
​Level 3​
​67 weeks (around 1 year and 4 months)
​Level 4
53 weeks (just over a year)​


After the waiting period, the scheme will cover care costs up to the maximum weekly benefit, you can find this in the table at the bottom of this page.

Route B: long-term care scheme information booklet

Easy read: long term care financial route B

Route C

If the value of all your assets, including your home, is more than £419,000 and your assets other than your home are worth less than £25,000, you can apply for a property bond. 

A property bond protects you from needing to sell your home to meet care costs​. It offers you the option to borrow against the value of your home without the need to sell it. 

If you:

  • live in a care home, the property bond can help with your care costs and your living costs in the care home
  • live in your own home, the bond can help with your care costs
  • need help with living costs, you can receive income support payments at the same time as payments from a long term care property bond
  • are eligible, you can use a property bond as soon as you start to need care

You'll need to complete a financial assessment when you apply. We'll collect information from you, and your partner (if you have one) to check the level of financial support you're entitled to. You may be required to use part of your income towards your costs.

The assessment will look at:

  • your income
  • the value of your home (if you own your own home, you will never be made to sell it)
  • the value of your other assets including savings, investments
  • assets that you have given away in the past (anything of a value over £5,000, including multiple gifts)
  • if you have given away your home at any time in the past and continued to live in the home, or received rent for the property

The full value of your home may be included in your financial assessment. This includes transferring your home to other family members.

If you're moving into a care home and your home will be empty, we advise that you rent your home to provide income to cover your care costs. If the home is left empty your financial assessment will include the rent you could be receiving.

How long is the waiting period?

The long-term care property bond can help you cover some or all the costs of your care during the waiting period. How long you'll need to pay for your care is dependent on your assessed care level. This may be different if you and your partner are both in need of long-term care. Once you have applied for the scheme, we'll keep a record of when your care has started and your assessed care level and tell you the exact number of weeks.

​Waiting period​
​Assessed care level
​Number of weeks before you receive benefit (approximate)
​Level 1
​148 weeks (just under 3 years)
​Level 2
​97 weeks (around 1 year and 10 months)
​Level 3
​67 weeks (around 1 year and 4 months)
​Level 4
53 weeks (just over a year)​


After the waiting period, the scheme will cover care costs up to the maximum weekly benefit, you can find this value in the table below. 

If you need to, you can continue to use the long-term care property bond to help to meet your living costs if you are in a care home. 

Route C: long-term care scheme information booklet

Maximum weekly benefit: weekly care costs covered

This table shows the maximum weekly benefit (care costs covered) by the long-term care scheme:

​Maximum weekly benefit​
Care level
​Maximum weekly benefit
​Needs
​Level 1
​£492.03

For example: needs support with personal care morning and evening, limited ability to make plans or appreciate risk, at risk of accidents or harm, socially isolated or needs support with social activities or relationships.

​Level 2
​£750.54

For example: needs help with personal care and physical tasks, needs support of two carers, needs regular daily visits for safety, severe disorientation with a widespread impact on activities.

​Level 3
​£1084.93

For example: physical impairment preventing all or almost all independent activity, little or no appreciation of everyday risk, challenging behaviour requiring supervision.

​Level 4
​£1363.95

For example: serious health condition requiring constant monitoring from carers, severe challenging behaviour needing 24 hour supervision.

Living costs in a care home

When you live in a care home you will also need to pay for your living costs. This includes accommodation, food, and utilities.  

The standard cost of this is currently £429.52 Some providers may charge more than this, you should check this when choosing your provider. 

Personal allowance in care home 

When you live in a care home you may retain up to £47.11 per week​ from your income for incidental expenses such as magazines and toiletries. If you do not have any income this may be paid from the long-term care benefit. 

Maximum living costs available through property bond is £797.58 per week. 

Extra costs

We'll pay the costs up to your assessed care level, whether you're living in a care home or receiving care in your own home.

In your own home you may choose to pay for care which costs more than the standard care cost for your care level. You'll be responsible to cover any extra costs.

In a care home you may choose to have a larger room or extra facilities, such as a room with a view. You'll need to cover any costs above your recognised care level.

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