As we age, there are many adaptions we must make to ensure our safety and good health and care may well be one of them. Here, we explore the difference between live in care and residential care homes. One difference is that carers who choose live in care jobs can provide more one-to-one help, support and contact. Which one will be right for you?


The main difference between live in care and a residential care home is obviously the property in which you will live. Moving to a residential care home will mean having all your personal possessions in one room – you may need to get rid of a lot of your belongings, in order to fit them into the space you have. Opting for live-in care will mean staying in your own home, with no need to compromise.


In addition to your possessions, living at home will mean you are able to continue to keep enjoying having a pet. Many elderly people have animals as companions, and it is unlikely that a residential care home would allow you to bring a cat or dog into the home. In this environment, the needs of the many are the priority, and other residents may not want to be in close proximity to animals. Live-in care will mean you can keep your animal friends close.


Living at home will mean you can eat what you want, when you want. Residential care homes often have set mealtimes and menus – you may be given a small choice, but nothing like the choice you would have if you choose live-in care. You can also shop for your own groceries and prepare your own tasty, healthy meals based on what you like to eat – and there will be no portion limits either!


The freedom you will enjoy from having live-in care will mean you can see your family and friends when you choose. There are usually set visiting times at residential care homes, and your family may have to travel some distance to stay for a relatively short period of time. Keeping family ties during your advanced years is extremely important – the support and encouragement from loved ones will deter loneliness and depression.

In addition to set visiting times, residential care homes offer scheduled activities for their residents. Whilst this may appeal to some, many elderly people would prefer to meet with friends on their own terms. It is very unlikely that you would find yourself in the same residential care home as long-term friends. Living at home will mean you can continue to attend social groups or activities with the help of your home help.


Residential care homes are staffed by teams of carers, usually working shifts. It is difficult to establish a close relationship and rapport when you are being looked after by numerous people. The one on one nature of live-in care will mean that you are able to build a connection with someone who is solely dedicated to your health and well-being.

If you have any health concerns, a live-in carer is by your side all day every day. There is research to show that elderly people who benefit from a live-in carer are less likely to suffer falls than those in residential care homes.

Live-in care truly can be a welcome alternative to living in a residential care home.