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Thread: Live in caregivers

  1. #1

    Live in caregivers

    I have some questions about live in caregivers. Obviously we all have our own bedroom, then I'm assuming we share the rest of the house? Do they pay rent? Or is it a reduced rent or free as part of the payment for being a caregiver? Can anyone that has experience with live in caregivers tell me what it's like? Any tips, do's and don't's?


  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Chesapeake, VA
    If they live rent free, it is considered part of their compensation for tax purposes. If they pay rent, it is considered earnings for you. A real double edged sword.

    You need to REALLY know the person you invite into your home. Unless you have a legal apartment, you will share common spaces. They will have access to everything you have (valuables, drugs, etc.). If you know the person, it can be a really beneficial arrangement for everyone.

    You need rules, in writing. These need to include things like visitors, keeping common areas clean, utilities, pets, and everything you never thought could be an issue. Keep it open to amendments as time goes on.--eak
    Elizabeth A. Kephart, PHR
    mom/caregiver to Ryan-age 21
    Incomplete C-2 with TBI since 3/09

  3. #3
    We had a live in caregiver for my mother. We had a contract with her that spelled out in detail the following:
    • The dollar value of the free rent she was provided as part of her compensation.
    • The hours she was actually on duty (and when she was not, and on her free-time).
    • What she had the use of and access to in the home: for example, the phone, computer, cable TV access (for her own TV and computer in her room), use of our TV and computer and under what conditions, use of the kitchen, use of the van (only for transporting my mother), access to the yard, access to other rooms in the house (such as my father's den, the other bedrooms, living room, family room, etc.). If you have a pool or hot tub, include that as well as any Wifi access if you have that.

    I think it is critical to have a very detailed spelled out contract for this type of arrangement. This was on top of other issues addressed in the contract, such as wages (we paid a flat monthly rate rather than hourly for this live-in person, unlike the other part-time PCAs which were paid hourly), supervision, conditions for termination, etc. etc. etc.


  4. #4
    So you had a live in as well as part-time PCAs? Would you happen to have a copy of the contract you used? Would you mind sending it to me? What type of questions, ect.. did you use for screening live in caregivers?

  5. #5
    I have part-time caregivers in my house. They are through an agency and work M-F, 7 am to 5 pm and then Sun. through Sat., 11 pm to 7 am. Fortunately I finished off my basement the summer before my accident and they stay down there until I call them. This arrangement does offer some privacy for the both of us. I have had aides fall asleep on both shifts, but the worse cases are aides who work the 11 pm to 7 am shift thinking they can rest or sleep when they get home and have to watch their children. We experience moderate to high turnover with aides.

  6. #6
    Sorry, no longer have the contracts (my mother died in 2012), but you can find some examples in these books or websites:

    My mother's live-in caregiver also had another job (through which she got benefits such as health insurance, etc.) so when she was working, and on the weekends, we had 3 other part-time people who did my mother's care. The live-in was with us for 13 years. The others mostly stayed 8-12 months or so. Many were students. All had contracts and specific job descriptions.

    Here are some typical questions I used when interviewing (I also based a lot of the interview on the written job description and the application for employment, including references):

    • Why do you want to work as a PCA?
    • What experience do you have working as a PCA or family caregiver?
    • Tell me about your cooking skills?
    • What would your friends tell me about you?
    • What will your previous employers say about you when I contact them?
    • Tell me about your work habits?
    • How would you handle a situation where you needed to change your work schedule?
    • What would you do if you and your employer disagreed about how something should be done?


  7. #7
    Senior Member zillazangel's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    North Carolina, USA
    We have a live in caregiver and I have an ironclad contract. PM me your email address and I'll send it to you.

    Don't forget to ask about whether they have a criminal record, a clean driving record and their credit report. We interviewed one gentleman who seemed like a dream come true. Until. He confessed to rape of a minor and prison time for it. Uhhhh, no thanks!!!
    Wife of Chad (C4/5 since 1988), mom of a great teenager

  8. #8
    If you do live in, I would recommend Monday to Friday only and then a weekend person as well, in addition to having backups. Having a seven day live in is a formula for burnout and premature leaving, even more so if they are being called upon overnight for assistance. I have a daytime and a separate overnight person. Definitely more expensive, but much more reliable either needs time off or leaves.

  9. #9
    Member Peders's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Blog Entries
    I have had no luck with the above links finding a contract example. I tried sending personal message also to the person above offering one. Does anyone else have an example? We are building an apartment in our basement. We will be offering full housing and utilities in exchange for caregiving hours.

  10. #10
    Senior Member elarson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    The Netherlands
    I will contact zillazangel on Facebook and let her know that you are trying to contact her.

    Here are a few links for live-in care contracts that I could find:
    Live-in Caregiver Employer/employee Contract.pdf
    Partner of an incredible stroke survivor. Limitations: hemiparesis and neglect (functional paralysis and complete lack of awareness on one side). Equipment: TiLite ZRA 2 and 2GX, Spinergy ZX-1, RioMobility Firefly. Knowledge: relative newbie for high-level equipment (2012), but willing to try to help others who are new with similar limitations (definitely not a guru, but inquisitive).

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