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Live in care vs home care


Choosing the right type of care that you or a loved-one needs, can be difficult. For many, extra support at home will be the most desirable choice. Live-in care or home care are two good options to consider. Both allow you to keep your own schedule, that suits your lifestyle, whilst providing reassurance that you are not alone.

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What is live-in care vs home care?


The key difference between live-in care vs home care is the amount of time the carer spends at your home.


A live-in carer will live in the home of you or your loved one, providing 24/7 support and companionship. This means that help is on hand whenever and however you need it. Your carer can help with anything from personal care and preparing meals, to running errands and keeping on top of chores. Live-in carers will fit into your lifestyle and will tailor the care they provide to suit your needs.


Home care differs in that it consists of regular visits, from just 30 minutes per week, to overnight stays. The visiting schedule can be arranged to suit you and can vary as needed. Again, your carer can assist with personal care, light chores around the house, or simply provide some company.


What’s the difference between live-in care vs home care?




With the key difference between live-in care vs home care being time, this does have an impact on the flexibility of each service.


The round-the-clock support of live-in care allows you to do things in your own time. Each day, the care provided can be different depending on your immediate needs. So, if one day is a bit more difficult that another, plans can easily be shifted and rearranged to accommodate that. If you’ve planned a trip to the supermarket for which you need support, but don’t feel able to go at the agreed time, then that’s ok. You can simply go later, or not at all.


With home care, such changes can be a little harder to navigate. Carers who provide home visits will generally see more than one person in a day. This means that whilst every effort will be made to be flexible, a carer will likely have their own schedule that they need to stick to.




According to Age UK, there are 1.4 million chronically lonely older people in England. Loneliness can have a detrimental impact on mental health and can be a real cause of concern for family and friends who may not always be able spend time with loved ones as often as they’d like to.


This is one of the biggest benefits of a live-in carer, who is not only on hand to provide the necessary assistance but is also a constant companion. 24/7 care means that there is plenty of time to reminisce, chat, or talk about any worries.


Home care visits also provide consistent companionship and having someone call in regularly may be just what is needed. However, if there are errands to run, or personal care required, there may be less of a focus on social care.




Care plans are designed to empower you or your loved one to live as independently as possible. Accepting that help is needed can be difficult, but it can help to recognise that care can allow you to continue living the lifestyle that you want.


The flexibility of live-in care allows you to have help on hand for every activity throughout your day, whether that’s a shopping trip, some gardening, or a favourite hobby. Staying involved in your community and having variety is so important and can really help to improve quality of life.


Of course, the same can be achieved with home care visits, but again there is a little less flexibility. Trips out need to be arranged in advance and any delays may mean that they must be postponed.


Specialist care


Specialist care may be needed for those living with a condition such as Dementia, Alzheimers, Parkinson’s, Stroke, or Multiple Sclerosis. Palliative or end of life care will also require specialist and complex care.


A live-in carer can be really valuable in such cases, enabling your loved one to remain in their own home whilst still receiving expert care. This will allow you to be free to enjoy your visits with your family knowing that everything else is under control.


Home care visits are unlikely to provide enough support for anyone living with a complex condition, but this can be discussed when assessing your home care options.


Care during the pandemic


With things currently as they are, having a live-in carer can be advantageous. It allows for self-isolation at home, whilst still receiving a high level of care and companionship.


The restrictions in place do allow for home visits of course, but they do come with an extra level of risk.


Here at Care 1st Homecare, we offer a range of home care services. All the help we offer is designed to help you or your loved one live as independently as possible at home, for as long as possible. If you would like to discuss the options available to you with one of our team, please request a callback today for a free and confidential chat.