I. What You Should Know About Home Care in Gainesville, FL

Gainesville is a large college town with a small-town feel located in central Florida. It has a population of just over 140,000 people, 11% of whom are aged 65 and older. The cost of living in Gainesville is lower than both the state and national averages, and there are many physicians per capita. Like most cities throughout Florida, the weather is nice and sunny year-round, with winter lows that average around 41.

There are several major hospitals near the city center. These include the UF Health Shands Hospital, the HCA Florida North Hospital and the Select Specialty Hospital. The UF Health Shands Hospital is part of the University of Florida Health System and is a learning hospital. It provides everything from primary care to family health. The UF Health Cancer Hospital is located across the street.

Seniors who receive home care in Gainesville have plenty of amenities located close by, which makes it an excellent place to retire and age in place.

II. What You Should Expect to Pay for Home Care in Gainesville, FL

Homemaker services in Gainesville cost around $4,481 per month, according to the Genworth 2021 Cost of Care Survey. This includes help with daily activities, including housekeeping, errands and meals. A home health aide includes limited medical care and costs slightly more at $4,576 per month. This monthly average is based on a 44-hour week. To determine the exact cost an individual may need, it’s important to multiply the hourly rate by the number of hours care is needed. For homemaker services the hourly rate is around $23.50 and for a home health aide it’s $24.

The Cost of Home Care & Home Health Care in Nearby Cities

The cost of home care varies greatly in surrounding cities. Homemaker services and home health is less expensive in Gainesville than the state and national averages. In Ocala, homemaker services cost around $4,576 and home health is around $4,767, which is the same as the state average. Both services in The Villages cost around $5,720 per month. In Homosassa, homemaker services cost around $208 less than in Gainesville and home health is $17 less.

The Cost of Home Care Compared to Other Senior Living Options

In Gainesville, the least expensive option for long-term care is adult day care at $1,403 per month. Assisted living facilities cost $947 more at $2,350. Home care and home health care cost around $4,481 and $4,576, respectively, and the most expensive residential care option is nursing home care. A semiprivate room is around $8,213 per month and offers the most extensive level of care outside of inpatient hospital treatment.

III. How to Find Home Care in Gainesville, FL

Finding a home care provider for yourself or a loved one can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. Below, we explain the process of how to find a home care provider in 5 simple steps. Use the infographic below to help guide your search for in-home care in Gainesville, FL.

IV. Home Care Resources for Seniors in Gainesville, FL

Alachua County SHIP Home Repair Program

What You Should Know

The SHIP home repair program helps low-income seniors afford to fix health and safety issues in their homes. Items that are available for repair under the program include roofing materials, heating and cooling units, electrical issues, accessibility and structural repairs. Funding is limited each year, so it’s important to apply early.

Who Is Eligible?

To quality for the home repair program, seniors must meet the following requirements:

  • Must reside in Alachua County
  • Must be the primary resident
  • Property taxes must be up to date
  • Aside from the repair, the rest of the property must meet or exceed the current housing codes

How to Get Started

To apply, seniors should contact the Alachua County Housing Program at (352) 337-6240 or by email at [email protected].

Rebuilding Together North Central Florida, Inc.

What You Should Know

Rebuilding Together helps seniors throughout North Central Florida make free emergency repairs on their homes. The goal of the program is to make homes safer for individuals and families and to improve the appearance of communities. All homes go through a 25-point health and safety checklist and repairs are made accordingly. These include safety modifications to showers, tubs and toilets, installing wheelchair ramps and making repairs to roofs, plumbing and electrical systems.

Who Is Eligible?

Applicants must meet the following criteria to be eligible:

  • Live in Alachua County
  • Own their own home with a clear property deed and up-to-date property taxes
  • Meet specific income guidelines
  • Provide verification of income and a government ID

How to Get Started

To apply for the home repairs, contact the organization directly at (352) 373.2573.

Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) of Central Florida

What You Should Know

The WAP of Central Florida helps low-income seniors and families reduce their energy spending through energy efficiency improvements. The types of repairs performed on a home are dependent on a pre-inspection and the amount of funding that’s available. Available upgrades include installing heating and water line insulation, replacing lighting and bulbs, installing attic and wall insulation, installing solar screens, replacing inefficient appliances and installing CO and smoke detectors.

Who Is Eligible?

To qualify, seniors must provide proof of income for the past 12 months, have a disability, provide proof of homeownership and a copy of the most recent electric bill and provide copies of identification.

How to Get Started

To apply for the WAP of Central Florida, download an application and submit it to the Central Florida Community Action Agency at 411 North Main Street, Suite 210, Gainesville, FL 32601 or email to [email protected]. For answers to questions about an application, contact (352) 373-7667.

Alachua County Homestead Exemption

What You Should Know

Alachua County homeowners may apply for a homestead exemption, which helps reduce the amount of annual property tax owed on their home. The exemption is up to $50,000 of the taxable value of the property. The first $25,000 applies to all property taxes, which includes school district taxes. Home valued between $50,000 to $75,000 may receive another $25,000 deduction on non-school property taxes.

Who Is Eligible?

To be eligible for a homestead exemption in Alachua County, an individual must own their own property and use it as their primary residence.

How to Get Started

To apply for a homestead exemption, contact the Alachua County Property Tax Appraiser’s Office at (352) 374-5230.

Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)

What You Should Know

LIHEAP is an emergency bill payment program that helps seniors and low-income families address their past-due heating and cooling bills. The program makes a one-time payment for families who are closest to having their utilities disconnected due to nonpayment. It may also help families who’ve already had their services cut off.

Who Is Eligible?

Eligibility qualifications for LIHEAP include:

  • Seniors aged 60 and older or families with one person at least aged 60
  • Must receive SSI, TANF, SNAP or meet income requirements
  • Must be suffering from an energy bill crisis

How to Get Started

Contact the local Central Florida Community Action Agency at (352) 373-7667 to apply for benefits.

Meals on Wheels – ElderCare of Alachua County

What You Should Know

Meals on Wheel of Alachua County provides home-delivered meals to seniors who are homebound or who are unable to prepare meals on their own. The program also delivers congregate meals to senior centers throughout the county and can provide companionship and well checks. Each meal meets one-third of the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of nutrition for senior-aged individuals. Meals are provided Monday through Friday during lunchtime. The program is limited to the number of volunteers and the amount of funding available, so there may be a waiting list.

Who Is Eligible?

Seniors must be at least 60 years of age and homebound.

How to Get Started

Seniors interested in receiving meals may contact the program directly at (353) 265-9040 or by email at [email protected].