Mother in nursing home,will not return home. Father needs assisted living, can house be sold to pay for assisted care for him?My dad is elderly and in poor health. Can the house he lives in be sold to pay for assisted living for him?

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FreqFlyer is right about contacting Medicaid before you do this IF your mom is on Medicaid at her NH.

If mom is on Medicaid, Medicaid is required to recover any costs paid for her care if feasible. Now since Dad was living at home, it was not feasible as he was considered the community spouse and living in the home. But once he moves out, that changes.

What I'd suggest you try to find out - and find out clearly - is IF the house is sold AND since dad was a CS will 100% or 50% or zero of the proceeds from the sale of the house be there for Dad to use to pay for his AL as Medicaid has a lein on the property due to mom being on Medicaid. IF dad has 100% or 50% then he will have $ to pay for his AL (as most AL do not take Medicaid or require a period of time of private pay before medicaid they can get a Medicaid bed). But IF Medicaid wants all the $ to recover all of mom's costs to date, there may be little to no $ left. You want to find out as it could make a big difference as to his ability to pay for AL. If it's looking like there's no house proceeds or not enough to pay for more than a few months of AL, perhaps you want to look at dad moving into the NH where mom is at. And you get dad to become eligible for Medicaid even if that means a spend-down for a couple of months. There may need to be some doctor visits, health chart updating to show dad to be "at need" enough for a NH but it probably can be done.

You want to be clear from caseworker as to what happens. You don't want to find the the proceeds somehow make both mom & dad ineligible for Medicaid and you have to go through paperwork hell to make all this simpatico.

Also it will be hard for you to get reimbursed for any costs you pay to get the house sold if Medicaid is involved. Medicaid tends to look at all $ family spends on their parents as done out of a sense of familial duty. So keep that in mind. Placing a house on the market has costs - taxes, insurance, utilities,etc. It adds up. Most places have taxes due end of January. Selling it "as is" as FF suggested is often best. Good luck!
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First question, did your Dad give you or someone else Power of Attorney in which the document indicates that the POA can sell the house?

If yes, then put the house on the market and use the equity to pay for Dad's assisted living cost. The equity will need to be in an account at the bank under Dad's name and the POA's name so that the POA can write checks only for Dad's care. If you are POA set it up as "John Doe or Adult Child Doe".

If the house needs updating, don't bother doing any fixing. Today many houses are being sold "as is" and being bought by buyers who will rehab and resell at a later date. Have the house professionally appraised by a licensed Appraiser. This will give you and your Realtor an idea where to price the house. I got a good price for my Dad's house, it was win-win for both seller and buyer.

Now if Medicaid is involved, please contact your parents case worker and see how to proceed with selling the house, Medicaid might have their own rules.
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