Recycling and rubbish collection days are also changing for some households in Mendip and South Somerset. Read about the changes and how they may affect you.

Capital threshold


Market Sustainability Plan

Alongside Cost of Care exercises, local authorities were required by the government to develop a market sustainability plan. The purpose of the market sustainability plan is for local authorities to assess and demonstrate how they will ensure local care markets are sustainable, as they move towards implementing reform.

The plan will assess the impact current fee rates are having on the market and the potential future risks – particularly in the context of adult social care reform. This assessment will enable local authorities to inform the development of mitigating actions, including how much they will need to increase fee rates over the three-year Spending Review period.

You can read the Market Sustainability Plan.

The Government sets the level of savings that determines if you can get help with your care fees. This is called the ‘Capital Threshold’, and it is currently £23,250.

If you have more than this amount in capital and savings you cannot get any help with care fees from us. This means that you will have to pay the full amount of fees yourself until your savings fall to £23,250.

You can also use our quick online checker to give you an indication of whether you might be eligible for financial support with the cost of your care. This should not be considered a decision and the final outcome of your assessment may differ, but it can give you an indication which can help you decide whether you would like to make an application.

We advise all residents to take independent financial advice, as there may be several different ways of paying for care.

Other benefits you may qualify for

Attendance Allowance and Personal Independence Payments are non-means-tested, non-taxable benefits from the Department for Work and Pensions. There are different rates depending on the level of your needs. Everyone who needs care should consider claiming these benefits, however, they may not be paid if you are, or become, a permanent resident in a care home.

The Attendance Allowance helpline: 0800 731 0122

If you are entitled to the mobility component of Personal Independence Payment, this will not stop once you are in a care home and it is not included in your financial assessment.

You may also want to consider applying for

  • Universal Credit – if you are under pension age
  • Pension Credit – if you are over pension age

NHS Funded Care

People who pay for their own care in a nursing home can ask for an assessment to get NHS funding for the nursing part of their care. Your home will tell you how to do this. You will have to fill in a consent form. When you have signed the form, a District Nurse will arrange to visit you to carry out this assessment. You do not have to have an assessment, but if you choose not to have one, no payments can be made.

The weekly rate for NHS funded care is £155.05. When the District Nurse has agreed that you are entitled to NHS funded care you can negotiate a reduction in your fees with your nursing home.

Some homes do not reduce their fees but return the money to you once they have been paid by the NHS.

When to contact us for help with care fees

It is very important that you contact us as soon as possible when your savings drop to £30,000. We may be able to give you some help with care fees when this happens.

If possible, visit a Talking Cafe, or you can phone us.

Cost of care

The government required local authorities to survey a range of providers – representative of the local market – as part of the cost of care exercise, to improve their understanding of the actual costs of delivering care in their area. They also required local authorities to publish their findings.

We were required to use the exercise to determine and report the median actual operating costs for the following categories, plus evidence and values for return on capital and return on operations.

Together these make up the cost of care. The categories are:

  • care homes for ages 65 and above
    • standard residential care
    • residential care for enhanced needs
    • standard nursing care
    • nursing care for enhanced needs
  • domiciliary care for ages 18 and above

In May 2022, former Somerset County Council contacted all providers to inform them of this and to collaborate with them to determine what is a sustainable cost of care in their local area. This exercise was undertaken to prepare for the reform of social care that was due to start in October 2023.

Since the first submission of this draft document, the government has paused the implementation of the Adult Social Care reform. Somerset officers have used this exercise as part of the budget setting process and recommended that we work towards the cost of care as funding allows over the next few years.

Last reviewed: June 4, 2024 by Victoria

Next review due: December 4, 2024

Back to top