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Tailored one-on-one in home care, one of the differences between home care and residential care

Residential Vs Home Care: What's the right path for you?

Choosing the right type of care for your loved one is one of life’s biggest decisions. It can be stressful, complicated, physically demanding and loaded with emotion.

We all want to do the right thing by our parents and make sure they face their later years with comfort, love and dignity.

 The two main pathways for support in Australia are in-home care and residential aged care.

Today, we compare the pros and cons of Residential Aged Care vs In-home Care.

A table of comparisons between residential aged care and in-home care, useful for someone looking to remove a parent from a nursing home

Care and Continuity

In residential aged care, care teams are multi-skilled, and can cater for all levels of supported care, with large patient to staff member ratios.

The ‘all under one roof’ aspect to aged care centres and their care facilities can be convenient and appealing to families. However, the average staff to patient ratio in residential aged care can vary greatly.

In comparison, care within the home allows for one-on-one support whilst the patient continues living at home. At Prestige Inhome Care we work with each client to provide continuity of care to help foster genuine relationships and long-term care and support. Your care team also receive training and development around you and your loved one’s particular conditions and needs.

Nick McDonald, founder and CEO of Prestige Inhome Care has developed Prestige’s services drawing upon his early experiences in aged care.

“I worked in a nursing home when I was studying nursing, and it was there that I realised you had to care for like seven people in an hour.  Whereas working with people in their own home, you’ve got that one individual that you’re looking after and supporting. So you can be way more engaged and connected to them as a person, as opposed to purely getting through the task. Having done both, working with people in their own homes, is so much more rewarding.”

Personalised Support

At times, residential care facilities are unable to provide personalised support services as they are supporting numerous different clients at once.

We understand that one size doesn’t fit all. When receiving care in the home from Prestige In-home Care a Client Case Manager is assigned to your loved one upon commencement of their program.

Your Case Manager enables open communication, feedback and is the conduit for the relationship between family, client and care team. This ensures that the client’s and family’s needs are always met and all parties can monitor and quickly respond to any changes that are needed in their care.


Improvements in communication technology are enabling care providers to be more efficient, facilitate better communication and improve the overall customer experience. When your loved one is in a nursing home it can be sometimes challenging to communicate with them or the staff at the facility to access real time information about how your loved one is going.

At Prestige Inhome Care, we will assign you and your family a dedicated Case Manager who can be contacted at any time. We also have a convenient app for clients and their families. The app gives you real time access to rosters and billing information and streamlined access to the care coordination team. Through the My Prestige app clients and their families can even request roster changes online, including adding, changing and cancelling shifts.

Compare the Costs

 Residential CarePrestige Inhome CareWhat you need to know
Basic Daily FeeBasic Daily Fee set at 85% of the single person age pension at a cost of $51.63/ day$0 Basic Daily Fee (hourly fee approximately $58.60)This is paid by everyone entering an aged care home and is used to contribute towards day-to-day living costs such as meals, cleaning, laundry, heating and cooling. Adjusted twice annually in-line with the age pension.
Means Tested Care FreeMeans Tested Care Fee is the amount a resident is asked to contribute according to assets and income calculations at a cost of $75.43/day*$0Average Means tested based on an individuals income and assets. Up to $252.20p/day capped at $27,754 annually and a $66,611 lifetime cap. Means Tested Care Fee is not required for in-home care services.
Additional and Extra Service FeesExtra and/or Options Services Fee is an additional fee charged by some facilities for higher standard accommodation or additional services (not all facilities charge this but if charged, generally between $5.00/day and $80/day)$0An extra service fee is generally for a higher standard or accommodation. Optional services may include Netflix, hairdressing, newspapers. Not all facilities charge an additional service fee. Extra and/or Options Services Fee is not required for in-home care services.
Hourly RateN/A$60.70**Only in-home care services enable individuals to pay for services on an hourly rate allowing for more flexibility and control over the amount and type of services.
Required PaymentRAD – $600,000 -$1 Million$0RAD is paid as lump sum when entering an aged care home and refunded in full when leaving the home. The facility may negotiate the RAD (previously known as a bond) with the resident. The RAD is not required for in-home care services.
RAD – Refundable Accommodation Deposit (this is similar to an interest free loan from the resident to the facility and will be refunded in full or in part when they leave the facility)
DAP – Daily Accommodation Payment (this is the interest payable on any unpaid RAD)*
Hourly rate displayed is the weekday rate.
Disclaimer – The information contained in this website is provided as an information service only and does not constitute financial services advice. None of the information provided takes into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. You must determine whether the information is appropriate in terms of your particular circumstances, and we would encourage you to seek your own current financial planning advice with regard to Residential Aged Care costs. These prices are indicative only.

“A recent survey, by Flinders University’s Caring Futures Institute, commissioned by the Royal Commission into Aged Care Safety and Quality, of more than 10,000 Australians not using aged care, found that the majority of Australians not using aged care were willing to pay more to access aged care at home to avoid entering residential care.

“72 per cent of Australians not using aged care were willing to pay more to access aged care at home to avoid entering residential care.”

Residential care often has different layers of ongoing fees as well as an initial large upfront lump sum which may range from $600,000 to $1 million – the Refundable Accommodation Deposit (RAD). There may also be daily fees and service fees on top. The pricing of residential care can often be overwhelming and complicated.

Prestige Inhome Care likes to keep fees simple and transparent for clients. Our fees are charged on a straight hourly basis, without any other hidden costs, which means that clients only pay for the care they need and use.

This allows families to reduce the cost of care if they wish to assist with the care of their family member, or even for those who only need support through respite care. You can choose to use our in-home care from one hour* to 24-hours a day, from one to seven days a week, on a casual or ongoing basis. There are no lock in fees which means that people can start, increase or stop care if their needs change without any penalty fee.

Prestige can always help you navigate fees and compare any quotes that you have been given for residential care to our in-home care services. With access to government-funded care, families are often surprised at how affordable their in-home care packages and health care options can be.

 Your Environment

When you’re choosing the type of care for your loved one, it’s important to think about which environment will suit them best.

Residential care is mostly a larger setting and may range from 10 to 100 plus beds. They are often busier more sociable environments with shared communal spaces for relaxing or dining. Some larger centres have the convenience of facilities on site, even hairdressers or cafes, with organised group activities and excursions. There are often set personal care routines, meals and meal times, as well as restrictions around visitors.

This routine and structure may suit some families. However, if your loved one would prefer to stay in their own home environment then in-home care may be the way forward for your family.

Being in a familiar setting can be a great comfort to people as they get older, and research indicates that it can be beneficial to people with Dementia and Alzheimer’s. Dementia Australia says that ‘Creating a safe and comfortable home environment, plays an important role in ensuring better quality of life for people with dementia.’

It can also give your loved one the opportunity to maintain a level of independence and the flexibility to continue their usual routines. They can do the activities they have always enjoyed and see family and friends as much as they’d like. They are also able to continue to eat their favourite homemade dinners they’ve always loved, when they want – and whilst watching their favourite TV show in their favourite armchair!

Moving into residential care is a big step and often involves selling the family home. However, statistics show that many families are unhappy with the decisions they have made, particularly in light of recent world events. A recent national survey by strategic consulting group, Fifth Dimension, found that: “54 per cent of people who have a loved one in aged care are currently considering taking that person out of care.”

It’s not difficult to return to in-home care, but with many having already sold their homes, the upheaval can be complex and can be avoided if the right decision is made first. Before taking the plunge, it’s important to know what other options are available to you too – and you may be surprised! Here are some points to consider to help you make the best choice for your loved one and family.

“54 per cent of people who have a loved one in aged care are currently considering taking that person out of care.” – Consulting Group Fifth Dimension.

Round-the-clock Care (24-Hour Care)

Residential care is well suited to people with high dependency needs who need round-the-clock support and medical staff on hand. Families may assume that this is the best solution and there is no other choice.

However, Prestige’s 24-Hour Care Solution offers the ‘best of both worlds’ – enabling your loved one to receive the personalised and tailored high-level care they need – whilst staying in the comfort of their own home. You can still access all the nursing services you need with registered nurses and also have the freedom to bring in the medical professionals you have built a trusted relationship with over the years.

With residential care, the care is of course full time seven days a week. However, the Prestige 24-Hour Care Solution is flexible. You can choose the amount of days or hours to work around your own family’s needs, routine and availability to help yourself. And, with no lock in contract you can start or stop or reduce the level of care whenever you need.


Prestige provides flexibility to caring for your loved one. At times families want to be involved in caring for their loved one. For example, one night of the week families may choose family time and provide support to their loved one in their home by themselves. This can fit your lifestyle and how your family dynamics works. Within residential aged care the flexibility is somewhat limited.

Why Choose Prestige as your Home Care Provider?

Prestige Inhome Care is a private provider of industry-leading tailored home-based care services. With 20 years’ experience we are committed to focussing on your individual needs by blending the expertise and skills of our people with a warm and welcoming environment.

If you are currently in the process of making this important decision or you just feel like you would like to know more about in-home care for yourself or your loved one please reach out to Prestige In-home care. We can discuss what type of care may be best for your loved one, and to find out more about our Prestige Inhome Care, contact us for a free face-to-face consultation on 1300 10 30 10 or at

*Services start from a minimum of 2 hours in Sydney.