Hourly and Live-in Care Services in Long Island, NY

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If your aging loved one struggles to meet their basic needs or suffers from loneliness, it’s time to take action. You may be wondering: What’s the difference between hourly care vs. live-in care, and how can you tell which type of care will support their needs? 

As an NYS licensed employment agency specializing in nonmedical care to seniors, we at SeniorCare Companions understand the nuances that separate standard home care from exceptional home care. We work closely with you to create a care plan with a team of compassionate caregivers who can make your loved one’s day brighter, predictable, and safe. Keep reading to learn the differences between hourly care vs. live-in care. 

Hourly care vs. live-in care for seniors 

Hourly care places caregivers in your loved one’s home on an hourly, as-needed basis. This style of care allows seniors to have more assistance around the home while encouraging greater autonomy. 

The number of hours your loved one’s caregiver is present depends on your loved one’s health. For instance, if your loved one suffers from mild dementia, her caregiver may need to stay for half of the day vs. visiting as needed to assist with tasks such as specialist appointments and grocery shopping. It’s an excellent solution for seniors who aren’t ready for live-in care. 


What does hourly care look like? 

Hourly care enhances seniors’ quality of life by offering extra socialization during daytime or evening hours. Additionally, SeniorCare Companions will help your loved one with: 

  • Housework and daily tasks 
  • Personal hygiene guidance (i.e., washing, dressing) and grooming 
  • Assistance with making and attending appointments 
  • Setting up a walker or another mobility device.
  • Meal planning and clean-up 
  • Ensuring that prescriptions are filled and taken as needed (however, your loved one’s caregiver cannot provide skilled nursing services such as physically administering medication, IVs, etc.) 
  • Companionship in the form of conversation, playing games, gardening, taking walks, providing emotional support, and more

The pros and cons of hourly care

Hourly care comes with some advantages and disadvantages. The biggest advantage in comparison to live-in care is the cost. Hourly care is typically half the average cost of live-in care, which usually requires more than one caregiver per client and frequent overnight visits. It’s also less expensive than long-term nursing home care in the greater Long Island area, which averages almost $400 per day. The cost of hourly care has remained relatively stable within the past five years, whereas nursing care and long-term care costs continue to rise. 

The cons of hourly care include fewer opportunities for frequent socialization. This may be very challenging if your loved one has moderate dementia or progressive Alzheimer’s disease. Familiarity through frequent, lengthy visits allows patients with severe memory impairments and mood swings to develop a more peaceful routine. 

Ultimately, if flexibility is important to you and your loved one, and your loved one does not need frequent supervision, hourly care may be the ideal choice. We at SeniorCare Companions can help you determine if hourly care is extensive enough for your loved one’s needs. We generally recommend hourly care for seniors in fair to good health, do not have severe mobility and/or intellectual impairment, and can perform most basic tasks independently. 


What does live-in care look like?

Live-in care places one caregiver with your loved one for a 24-hour period across a maximum of four to five days. For the remaining two to three days, a supplementary caregiver will assist your loved one. This style of care is preferable for individuals dealing with ongoing conditions that require frequent visits and supervision. 

The key difference between an hourly vs. live-in caregiver is availability during evening hours. Live-in caregivers must receive an 8-hour rest break in an adequate space (i.e., not a sofa, but a bed or a sofa bed). 

Like hourly caregivers, a team of live-in caregivers at SeniorCare Companions help your loved one with personal hygiene, grocery shopping, and other errands, morning and evening routines, moving from room to room or up and down the stairs, prepare and clean up meals, and other basic tasks. We recognize that clients who require live-in care have more extensive needs, so we train our caregivers how to identify changes in their behaviors and provide physical and emotional support on an around-the-clock basis.

The pros and cons of live-in care 

If you worry about your loved one’s well-being and can’t afford to watch after them at all hours of the day, a team of live-in caregivers may be the best solution. 

Although live-in care is more expensive, this type of care is an excellent fit for seniors dealing with progressive cognitive issues. Remaining in their surroundings with friends, family, and pets close by is more comfortable for individuals with progressive dementia. 

Typically, each client at SeniorCare Companions works with the same team of caregivers to foster trust and familiarity. We treat our clients like family, and we recognize that building enduring bonds means spending as much time with the same caregivers as possible. In emergencies where your loved one’s preferred caregivers cannot come to work, we immediately inform you about the schedule change. 

There are some disadvantages and challenges to live-in care that we urge you to consider. For one, live-in care cannot supplement skilled nursing and medical services. The additional costs of live-in care combined with skilled nursing are difficult for most families over long periods. Finally, caregivers are legally required to take a 4-hour break, which may require you or another relative to monitor your loved one.  

At SeniorCare Companions, we find that seniors recovering from an acute and non-threatening illness, seniors with limited mobility, and seniors with moderate dementia prosper with an hourly care team.

To learn more about the cost and benefits of our in-home care services, give us a call at 631-581-9000 or email info@seniorcarecompanions.com. We look forward to speaking with you. 

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