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How can I make the move to a care home easier for a loved one?

One of the most difficult decisions to make is acknowledging that one is no longer able to manage at home and needs to move into residential care.  Week by week many of us are  faced with supporting an elderly relative through this difficult transition.

As with most things, planning is key.  A financial lasting power of attorney will enable a chosen relative or friend to assist in seeking financial advice as to how best to fund the cost of care, to ensure that fees are paid regularly and will enable them to deal with the sale of a property, if required.

Of at least equal importance, is a health and welfare lasting power of attorney, which will give the chosen attorney authority to liaise with the care home manager and staff in ensuring that all care decisions taken are in the best interests of the person involved and will give the attorney the authority to intervene to avoid, for example, distressing or unsettling repeated admissions to hospital, if they are unlikely to achieve any significant benefit.

A letter of wishes, noting the individual’s hobbies and pastimes can also be helpful to the care home staff in enhancing the individual’s quality of life whilst in their care.

There is a lot of evidence to suggest that even where an individual is suffering from a serious loss of capacity, getting involved in activities which they have always enjoyed can still help to settle and soothe them.

Whilst something people often dread, if managed properly, through effective forward planning, a move into residential care does not mean that an individual has to surrender control over how they live their life.

If you would like to speak to a member of our team regarding this subject, please call 0345 671 0276 or email

Wills and Probate - head of Wills and Probate - Kathryn Harwood