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Care home price hikes overtake pensioner income growth

The latest instalment of our research into care home fees shows the cost of residential care has risen by more than £700 in the last year to almost £30,000. This is more than twice the average pensioner income of £14,300, creating a growing gap between care costs and income: the shortfall now stands at £15,089 or £290 a week.

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Deferring the cap; closing the gap

The government announced last week that it will defer the capping of care costs until 2020. This will grant providers and local authorities a much needed break following five years of substantial cuts under the coalition. Following recommendations from the Dilnot Commission in 2011, plans were in place to put a £72,000 cap on the care liabilities of individuals, after which local councils will be responsible for the costs incurred. Under the government’s original timeline, the Act was due to come into force in April 2016.

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Minimum wage, maximum strain

Last week’s announcement that the minimum wage is set to rise captured the public’s attention, and has generated significant debate. From next year, adults over the age of 25 will be paid a minimum of £7.20, which will increase to £9 by 2020. This is uplifting news for the millions of people earning the national minimum wage, many of whom make a significant contribution to our society in a range of key sectors ranging from industry to health and social care.

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