This is a scheme that allows you to put off selling your home during your lifetime if you are in permanent residential or nursing care. Under the scheme, the council loan you the funds to pay for your residential care home fees until your home is sold. We will arrange for a legal charge to be placed on your home and the loan is repaid when the property is sold.
To take advantage of the scheme, you must meet the following conditions:
- You have had an assessment and the council decide that you have eligible needs that should be met through a residential or nursing care home
- You have savings less than, or equal to £23,250 (other than the value of your home) to meet the cost of your care
- You own or have part legal ownership of a property (which is not benefitting from a property disregard)
- You have the mental capacity to agree to a Deferred Payment Agreement or have a legally appointed agent (Power of Attorney) willing to agree this
- If you decide to take advantage of the Deferred Payment scheme you can add the cost of any ‘top up’ to your Deferred Payment loan if the council agrees there is enough equity in your home. The government rules say that ‘top ups’ for people not using the Deferred Payment scheme have to be paid by someone else
- You will receive regular statements advising you of the outstanding sum and charges on your Deferred Payment scheme account.
You can also take advantage of the scheme if you want to sell your property. The council will loan you the money to pay the costs that would have been met from the sale during this period, until the sale is complete.
Things to think about
You may want to consider the following things before applying for the scheme:
- Fees will be applied - legal fees, Land Registry and land search fees. The council will make an administration charge and apply interest
- The money owed to the council must be repaid when your estate is dealt with after your death or when your property is sold. There will be no interest charges if the property is sold within 56 days of your death
- You will need to maintain the empty property. This includes paying for insurance on the building and contents and paying heating bills to save the property from damp and frost, even if the property is empty
- If you rent out the property, some of the rent you receive will have to be used to contribute towards the cost of your care, but will reduce the amount of the loan payable at the end of the scheme
- When the council places a legal charge on your property, you will not be able to sell your home or transfer ownership until the loan has been repaid.
Who can I speak to?
The person in the finance team dealing with your property charges will be able to explain the scheme in more detail and answer any questions you have.
You should take independent financial and legal advice to help you decide which course of action will be financially better for you.