I have no money, just a house. Trying to get my mom into assisted living and dont know how we wil pay for it.

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My Mom is 78 has dementia and she lives in NJ I was running from Phila to NJ for 3years. My daughter is 23 started living with my Dad and Mom about 2years ago my Dad passed last April and since then my Mom has been getting worse. Im trying to get her into an assisted living place but all she has is a house. I don't think I should sell it becouse 1) it will take to long and 2 she won't get what it is worth and I need every penny. I think if I put my name on the deed. I dont know Im so confused!


I am finding out late in the game that the best thing to do is to consult an attorney that specializes in elder laws. My daughter quit her job and I was paying her a meager amount from my Mother's money to stay with her while I worked. I now find out that I may have to put the money back into my Mom's account. I am seeing an attorney to discuss this and many other things tomorrow. The use of an elderly persons funds has many stipulations and "rules". Some of them I think are ridiculious, but they are in place to keep family members and others from taking advantage. My daughter worked in the Emergency Care field for several years and you would not believe the condition of some of the elderly people she encountered. One gentleman comes to mind. His son was providing his care and quickly going through all his money. When my daughters team went in to check they found the poor man covered in maggotts, starving and in very poor condition. I could never imagin letting that happen to anyone, let alone my parents. Because these unbelievable things really happen laws are in place to help those who can no longer help themselves.
DMP - DO NOT PUT YOUR NAME ON THE DEED UNTIL YOU SPEAK WITH AN ATTORNEY!!! DOING SO COULD MESS UP YOUR MOM'S MEDICAID. Many assisted living facilities will accept medicaid along with your mom's regular income (social security + pension) to pay for their services. The best thing to do is find an ALF you like and inquire about medicaid - most can even help you with the application. Be advised that medicaid will put liens on her house to recoup funds they spend on her. Generally, a family member may live in the house until grandma/pa dies then the state will force the sale of it to reimburse their expenses. The family member should pay the utilities, insurance and taxes to maintain the house. There is no medicaid REQUIREMENT on this but it's just the ethical thing to do. You cannot simply put your name on the deed to keep the state from placing the liens or forcing the sale. There is a 5-7 year look back period where they want to know of any transfer of cash, CDs, property or cars - anything of value. This may disqualify her from getting assistance. Please look in the money and legal section of this site or search on medicaid to find threads with more details on that topic.

In my Mom's case, she did a life estate and deeded her property to me; the life estate means that she could live in the house as long as she wanted. Ownership of the property transfered to me in small increments each year. She did this 14 years ago so the state medicaid specialists did some calculation that indicates she owns 30% of it and I own 70% of it. The state placed a lien on it UP TO 30% of the value of the home or $32,000. If we sell BEFORE Mom dies, we must pay the state $32,000. If we wait until Mom passes away - then the property becomes 100% mine upon her death and the state gets nothing. If Mom did this within 7 years of the medicaid application - I would get NO ownership; the life estate would be null and void but she did it long before the 7 year look back. Do not assume this will work in your state. You are wisest to see an elder or family law attorney to find out what's possible.

My Mom's money is all gone too - so I do what I can for her. She doesn't have a lot but she is well cared for and content. I don't see her daily because I work. And I work so that I can help provide her with clothes, a newspaper subscription and pay the property taxes on her house as well as my own living expenses. She isn't living at the taj mahal but she's in a nice facility where the aides are caring, kind and well trained. I hope you can find a well balanced solution that is good for your Mom and easy for you to live with as well.

Remember to take care of yourself as you go through this process. If you want more advice, please look on my blog - totally for help only - not commercial. I have a page about moving into assisted living that might provide you with some helpful ideas. You can link to my blog from my profile here on agingcare.com.
Best of luck!!! Your Mom is lucky to have a caring daughter and grand daughter!!
thank you so much. I did get a lawyer last year he did all my Moms paper work my daughter has a contract, like you she quit her job to care for my Mom. The ALF I am looking at dose not take medicaid it is all private pay. I like this place because it is very close to were I live and the people who work there a very caring. and they have a memory care unit. This has got to be the hardest thing I have ever done in my life I know I will putting money out to help her and that is fine I just need the house to help. I guess I will call that lawyer that I spoke to last year mybe he won't charge me for this one sense he took 4000.00 last year for the paper work.
Thank you for you help and good luck today

So, as long as YOU get the house, let the State pick up the tab for your Mother's nursing home care? It would seem to me that Mom and Dad worked and scrimped to have that property to help them financially when they needed it. It is NOT your house, you didn't pay for it, you didn't work for it. Sell the house NOW and give the money to Mom so she can do with it whatever SHE wants to do with it. The State is tired of picking up the tab. That's one reason this Country is in the economic shape it is in today! I'm sure this comment will make people angry, but oh well. The truth sometimes hurts.
NO it is not that I want the house the thing is I am not look for the state to pay for anything the ALF is private pay. I do not want her to go into a state founded place because the stink.
I am trying to get the house to work for her financially.
Thank you for your comment
My mother is in "rehab" now, after being dropped at the ALF she was at. She owns a condo, which stays empty right now. She will need to move out of the "rehab/snf" place she is in shortly and I'm looking around for a board and care or a SNF to take her as the ALF wont take her back, due to her being unable to walk or transfer. Now my mother wishes she had given my siblings and myself some money years ago when we needed it. Now it will all go for her care, which I"m OK with, but wish she would have let me have the $6000 my father left for me when he died 20 years ago, instead of insisting I turn over the money to her, as dad " would have wanted her to have all the money".
Yes, the truth hurts and I'm very sorry to hurt you. My husband and I worked hard out whole lives and paid taxes so that we could be properly cared for, not to be a burden to our children. As any loving parent knows, we sacrifice our entire lives for our children and grandchildren. Who says it has to stop when we are old. Why is it wrong to want to leave the assets that we worked so hard for to help our children, especially when it comes to their expenses of education for our grandchildren, which buy the way, should not be so high. Who is robbing who?
Jib-there is nothing wrong with wanting to leave your assets for your children, but there has to be a limit to how much assets seniors can hold on to. Does a senior with a million dollars in assets have the right to be cared for by the taxpayers? It would be nice if our country helped support it's seniors, but some of their assets should also be used.
Hi All My Mom has dementia pretty bad she has social security and VA total income is 2300.00 a month I can no longer care for her, am laid up myself with back problems and mom is a great deal of work. If mom had a house I would sell it to afford a nice place for her in dementia assisted living here in victorville ca they are running from 2900 to 3600.00 a month. I wish I had the income to place her in sterling commons a great place but over budget. They have activities memory care. But its all about the money. I have had mom in 2 board and cares they give personal care but are boaring lay around sleep nothing to do. Pay them 2100 a month to lay around sleep sleep sleep what a life she cries to come home hurts me so bad i want her here I just cant care for her and really its boaring at home since i cant run her around all the time. I wish i were rich I would place her in serling so she could have fun enjoy the rest of her life out. Like I said its all about the money..... She has no assests nd i dont if i did I would sell everything I had to place her. I think my mom will pass away within 6 months I feel sad I cant provide a better place for her last days here on earth.... Keep hoping I would win lottery then I can.Anyone have any suggestions on how to get 1500.00 extra a month for assisted living .
sadandboard, it is about the money. Those providing services need to get paid. I think we currently do a lousy job of organizing, paying for, and managing the care options for our seniors, but there is at least some government (taxpayer) support available. Have you looked into Medicaid for Mom? If she has about 6 months left she may qualify for Hospice Care, which Medicare pays for. If her dementia is bad and she is in the final stages she may need skilled nursing rather than assisted living.

Please talk to your area agency on aging about the options available. It is about money, and you may not be able to get mom into your first choice of care centers, but that doesn't mean you can't find a suitable place for her.

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