Aged care home (nursing home) administrators talking to each other

Aged care homes costs

Costs are different for care provided under different programs. If you don’t know what type of care you may be eligible for find out more about service available at getting started.

The Australian Government subsidises aged care homes to keep costs reasonable and affordable.

You are expected to contribute to the cost of your care if you can afford to.

If you are going to be, or have been assessed for care in an aged care home, follow these steps to work out your costs and what financial help you may be eligible for.

1. Estimate costs

If you are assessed as eligible for care in an aged care home (also known as residential care) you can use the fee estimator to help calculate your aged care home costs.

2. Arrange your financial assessment

Your income and assets assessment will let you know if you can be asked to pay:

  1. a basic daily fee (85% of the single person rate of the basic age pension)
  2. a means-tested care fee (if your combined income and assets are over a certain amount)
  3. accommodation costs (if you are eligible for assistance with your accommodation costs)

Read more about these costs and how to have an income and assets assessment.

3. Find out about providers’ costs

Find information about different providers’ costs from the service finder or by talking to aged care home providers.

Your provider may ask you to pay:

  • a basic daily fee (which everyone can be asked to pay)
    This covers living costs such as meals, power and laundry. Everyone moving into an aged care home can be asked to pay this fee.
  • means-tested care fee (worked out by the Department of Human Services)
    This is a contribution towards the cost of your care. The Department of Human Services will work out if you need to pay this fee based on an assessment of your income and assets, and tell you the amount.
  • accommodation costs
    Some people will have their accommodation costs paid in full or in part by the Australian Government, while others will need to pay the accommodation price agreed with the aged care home. The Department of Human Services will tell you which applies to you based on an assessment of your income and assets.
  • fees for extra and additional services
    You may have to pay extra if you choose a higher standard of accommodation or extra services. These vary from home to home. Your aged care home provider can give you details of these services and the fees that apply. You may have to pay additional fees for other care or services that are above your assessed care needs or the care and services your aged care home is required to provide you.

You will need to discuss and agree to any fees with your provider.

Read more about eligibility and moving into aged care homes.


The Fees for Home Care Packages and Residential Aged Care for People Entering Care from 1 July 2014 information booklet also provides more details on aged care home costs.



Find out more about means-tested care fees for care in an aged care home.

Last reviewed: 12 April, 2017.