Page Reviewed / Updated - February 12, 2021
This page assists citizens of Colorado in better comprehending adult day care, assisted living, and home care costs throughout the state. This site also explores the programs that offer financial aid, as well as differing payment options, available to individuals and families to care for the elderly.
The outlined programs here encompass all the available assistance from the state of Colorado. However, this is not a comprehensive list of what is available on the national stage. For help in searching for assistance at the national level, and finding the program that best suits the situation and care needs, please use our Resource Locator Tool.
Cost of Care Calculator
According to Genworth’s Cost of Care Survey 2019, the average cost of assisted living in Colorado in 2020 is $4,095 / month. However, based on one’s geographic location within the state, the average range of cost is fairly large, with $3,800 / month on the low end to $4,750 / month on the high end. In the most expensive areas of the state around Boulder, Grand Junction, and Denver, the monthly average cost is higher than the statewide average at $4,500 to $4,750 / month. The areas of Fort Collins, Greeley, and Colorado Springs are a little less pricey than is the statewide average at an average of $3,850 to $4,000 / month. The least expensive assisted living can be found in Pueblo. In this area, the average cost is $3,800 / month.
Alzheimer's or Memory Care communities within assisted living facilities typically have fees that are 20% - 30% higher than traditional assisted living. This, on average, equates to an additional $950 - $1,187 / month over the regional averages for those residents that require 24/7 supervision.
As of 2020, per the 2019 Genworth Cost of Care Survey, the average hourly rate for home care across Colorado is $26.00. The least expensive area of the state for home care is in the area of Pueblo, where the average hourly cost is only $23.45. The next most affordable areas are Colorado Springs and Greeley, where the cost is closer to $24.50 to $25.00 / hour. The most expensive areas are Boulder and Denver, with the average cost at $28.00 to $29.25 / hour.
Home health care, provided by a health professional, has a statewide average cost the same as home care at $26.00 / hour. In the areas of Colorado Springs, Boulder, and Denver, the average hourly cost is approximately $.25 to $.50 more.
Adult day care is the most affordable care option for seniors. As of 2020, Genworth’s Cost of Care Survey 2019 indicates that the average daily cost statewide is $75. In the areas of Fort Collins and Denver, the average daily cost is consistent with the statewide average. In the Colorado Springs area, it is a bit more expensive, closer to $79 / day, and the Pueblo area is the most costly area, averaging about $103 /day. The least expensive areas of the state for adult day care are in the city of Grand Junction and Boulder, where it is available for as little as $68 to $70 / day. It is worth noting that adult day care is typically billed in half-day increments, not on an hourly or daily rate.
In the state of Colorado, the Medicaid state plan is called Health First Colorado. It covers the cost of some personal care assistance, as well as the cost of nursing home care. However, many elderly individuals prefer to remain living in their homes, which is also less costly for the state. Colorado currently has one state Medicaid waiver plan, also referred to as a Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Waiver. Waivers are intended for elderly and/or disabled residents. It provides them with assistance, so that they can remain living independently. However, unlike the state Medicaid program, HCBS Waivers have caps on the number of individuals who can enroll in the programs. This means that even if one is eligible for a Medicaid waiver, there may be a wait list for services.
Waiver for the Elderly, Blind and Disabled – This self-directed waiver program provides care services at home and alternative care facilities, like assisted living, instead of at costlier nursing homes. Other benefits include home modifications, personal emergency response systems, adult day care, respite care, and non-medical transportation. Learn more here.
Under the Waiver for the Elderly, Blind and Disabled, there is an option called Consumer Directed Attendant Support Services (CDASS). This option allows seniors greater flexibility and freedom when choosing care providers. Even family members can be hired to provide care. Learn more about the benefits here.
Colorado long-term care Medicaid and Medicaid waiver eligibility considers three factors (income, marital status, and assets) when it comes to finances. Generally speaking, in 2020, there is an income cap of $2,349 a month per applicant. This figure is equivalent to 300% of the Federal Benefit Rate (FBR). For nursing home and HCBS Medicaid waiver applicants who are married and have a non-applicant spouse (community spouse), the income of the community spouse is not considered. In fact, applicant spouses are able to transfer a portion of their income to non-applicant spouses to prevent them from becoming impoverished. As of 2020, this amount can be as high as $3,216 / month. There is an asset restriction of $2,000 for a single applicant, and $128,640 resource cap for non-applicant spouses. Asset transfers up to five years in the past, referred to as the Medicaid Look-Back Period, are evaluated to prevent transfers in order to meet Medicaid eligibility. Violating the look-back period can result in a period of ineligibility for Medicaid services. More on Medicaid eligibility.
Colorado offers two non-Medicaid assistance programs. All of which have the end-goal of keeping state residents in their homes and out of costlier care facilities.
1.) The Old Age Pension (OAP) program provides financial assistance to help elderly residents attain a minimum monthly income. In some circumstances, dental and health benefits may be obtained via this program. More information can be found here.
2.) The Home Care Allowance (HCA) program is designed to provide financial assistance, enabling elderly residents to pay for home care services and benefits to continue independent living. Individuals may self-direct their care, even hiring family members. Further details are provided here.
There are many other options to help pay for senior care other than the choices listed on this webpage. There may also be programs to assist veterans, as well as eldercare loans. In order to find additional programs in Colorado that may help reduce the cost of various types of care, our Resource Locator Tool is invaluable.
After familiarizing oneself with the wide range of senior care costs in Colorado, there is clear reason to reach out to multiple providers in order to find the most affordable services. Though average costs in various parts of the state do not vary too widely, the costs between different types of care do vary widely. It is important for families to consider which type of care is most affordable and beneficial to them. Our free service assists in matching care services to specific individual needs. Click here for affordable care assistance.
For more information about the best affordable communities and costs and resources available in Colorado, click on the links below.