Understanding care fees and owning your property


I am hoping to get some advice around paying for care fees in the UK.

My parents live together and own their own property.

My siblings have talked about them selling the house and renting a house closer to the village ( they will struggle to buy)

This to me sounds like a bad idea due to the Mandatory Property Disregard law. But maybe I don’t understand the law.

My mother and or father may need residential care. Whilst they are living in a house they both own the govt can’t use capital from the property to fund care needs as I understand it ? But if they sold and rented and they have more than 25k in the bank then they would need to pay for all their care needs ?

Are there any circumstances where they would be forced to sell their house to pay for care fees ?

Hi Mark.

Look no further … four of the true bibles out there … thanks to AGE UK :

Paying for permanent residential care | Paying for a care home | Age UK

Help with selecting a care home :

Help with finding a Care Home | Age UK

Good general guide for whole scenario :

Care homes | Information and advice | Age NI

Disregards ?
Do I have to sell my home to pay for care? | Age UK

All valid as I type … the forthcoming GREEN PAPER ON SOCIAL CARE may well change the ball game … perhaps the pitch as well ?

Definitely a bad idea!

Thanks for the links much appreciated. So whilst they are both still living in the house they own if one of them needs care then they disregard the property as capital. Where it gets more complicated I guess if both of them needed care or if the parent who is at home passes away whilst the other is in care. I don’t even think my mum n dad have a will, we have tried talking about it but they are not interested and now my mum has dementia it makes it even more difficult.

Yep … just about sums it up . Mark.

A sheet of A3 to create a flow chart … yes / no / maybe answers … within 5 minutes , a second sheet needed ?

AGE UK … through anyone of the four links … contact details … they ARE the experts in this field.

Thanks will call Age UK tommorrow ! Cheers

Your welcome.

Saves buying a few sheets of A3 ?

Definitely don’t sell the house!

I had a good chat with age cymru yesterday. I am still a bit confused will call them again. The cap is different is Wales so you are allowed up to 50k in the bank before paying all fees.
What I don’t know is what tenancy my mum n dad have or even if they have a will. Say if my mum is put into a care home whilst my dad is still living in his house, if my dad dies will the house be sold and then all funds used to pay for my mums care ? Appreciate any help.

Hi Mark.

Highly likely.

Tenancy ?

If owner occupied … joint tenants / tenants in common … in the event of death , what happens is different depending on which.

Without trying to answer that one , an old article in The Guardian explores the difference :

Tenancy in common – solution to avoid selling my house for care home fees? | Property | The Guardian

Tenancy in common – solution to avoid selling my house for care home fees ?

I have been approached by a firm promoting this solution – it isn’t widely publicised and sounds too good to be true.

For 100% confirmation … guess who to bounce that one off ?

Thanks Chris, another call to Age Cymru, they were bloody good !!

Where’s me 10% commission ?

The type of tenancy is often in the House Deeds stored at Land registry and available for just £2 online (speaking for England, hope Wales is the same). Worth getting just to see who’s name(s) it is in. You may need a quick chat with a solicitor to explain it. We’ve just changed ours from joint tenants to tenants in common via a solicitor and though he’d told me that what it means it was gobbledygook to me :unsure:
Btw it only cost £50 for him to change it but we did both have to have the capacity to agree it.

The danger being that such a change … to avoid possible care home fees … could be challenged by an LA.

The Guardian article should cover this point.

Previous thread : Our Forum | Carers UK … attracted very little interest at the time.

If not , you know who to ask.

Again … the forthcoming GREEN PAPER … changing the whole ball game ?

This why we have done at the grand ages of 58 and 62 while in good health with no sign of needing care in the foreseeable future (or next 10 or so years, hopefully )
As well as it being mentioned on this forum it was recommended to us separately by both a financial adviser and a solictior , and as part of rewriting our wills and getting PoAs in place

(Yes we are finally doing what this forum has recommended to most people - after 3 years of membership!..prompted by hubbys retirement and the fact our previous wills were over 20 years old. The solicitor said EVERYONE should review their wills after every birth, every death, every marriage, every change of property in the wider family, so not just if our marriage changes but if any of our beneficiaries does too. We found 10 births, 2 divorces and 2 separations in the intervening 20 years, quite a few of which changed our ideas for our bequests)