Paying for care and support services when you live at home

The care and support services covered on this page are:​

Services that are excluded from charges are: daily living equipment, adaptations under £1,000, services under Section 117 of the Mental Health Act and Intermediate Care services for the first six weeks.

Cost of care and support services at home

The cost of home care and support services varies between care providers. Most people use private care agencies and charges are often in the region of £17 per hour and the amount of time needed to meet needs will vary with each person. Some people have a council run service where charges are different (see below):

Some people have the council’s own services and the maximum costs are:​

There are also additional fixed charges as follows::

  • transport (where the council is funding) – £3.60 per day
  • meals provided at a day centre – £4.40 per meal

Get help with the cost of your care

The amount you pay for care and support services depends on your financial position.

You may be entitled to assistance with paying for care. To find out whether you're eligible for help with these costs, you'll need to have a financial assessment.

You may be able to pay the full charges yourself or you may need some help towards costs from us. On this page, you'll find out more about what you need to pay and how we work it out.

Note: there are different rules for paying for residential care homes and nursing homes (PDF 103KB).

Eligibility for council-funded care and support

To find out if you're eligible for council-funded care and support, you must first have a needs assessment.

To request a needs assessment, contact Access Point, the contact centre for Adult Social Care.

If you're eligible for care and support services, you'll be referred to the financial assessment team. Someone from the team will then arrange to find out about your financial position and calculate the amount you may have to pay towards the cost of your care service.

Savings threshold for help with the cost of care

If you have savings and capital of more than £23,250 you'll pay the actual cost of all care services up to the maximum weekly charge of £900. If you don't have this level of savings then we'll continue with the financial assessment as shown below.

Financial assessment – what we look at

In the financial assessment you'll need to tell us about your savings, income and expenditure.

  • Property: if you own a property, the value of your main home will not be taken into account when you continue to live in it, but if you own or have a share in another property, we'll count its value towards your total savings and investments. If this is more than £23,250 then you'll pay the full cost of any care you need.
  • Savings: we take into account your savings held solely or jointly in your name and in some circumstances, savings held by your partner. We include savings over £14,250 and under £23,250 by calculating a ’tariff income’. This is calculated as income at the rate of £1 per week for every £250. The outcome of this calculation will be added to your total weekly income from other sources.​
  • Income: we will take account of all income from any pensions and benefits and other sources into account except for: DLA (Mobility Allowance), PIP Mobility, and earnings. There are also some other exceptions. 

There are complex rules if you live as a couple in your household and there may be special circumstances that can be taken into account if you feel the assessment is unreasonable. 

Summary: how we work out what you pay

We add up all of your income including income from savings above £14,250, not including earnings, Pension Savings Credit or Disability Living Allowance (DLA) Mobility Benefit or PIP mobility benefit.

Then we take away:

  • the set living allowance of £189 per week (£289 per week for a couple)
  • any assessed disability-related expenditure
  • housing costs, for example rent, mortgage, Council Tax or water rates

The amount left over is the weekly charge you must pay for services.

If you would like to see the full charging policy document please request by email to

How to pay           

If your service is provided by an independent agency, and you're assessed to pay the full cost, you'll usually be asked to pay the amount directly to them.

Otherwise you'll receive an invoice monthly in arrears from the Council for the care provided to you.

If you have a direct payment agreement, the charge will be deducted from your direct payments and you'll need to pay the assessed contribution into your Direct Payments account. This account will usually be provided on a “Prepaid Card”.

Contact us

If you have a question get in touch:

Financial Assessment Section
Adult Social Care
Brighton & Hove City Council
2nd Floor, Bartholomew House
Bartholomew Square

Call: 01273 295662

Additional information

Download and print out information about care and support services if you live at home (PDF 91KB).

Helpful external websites

The Money Advice Service  

Age UK
Call: 01273 720603

Carers Centre for Brighton & Hove
Call: 01273 746222

Disability Advice Centre 
Call: 01273 296744