Hidden Fees to beware of when looking for a Provider

A Home Care Package can be used for a range of different home care services depending on your individual needs.


When you are assigned your package, you will need to choose an Approved Provider to host the Home Care Package. This Provider has been authorised by the government to receive and manage your funding to ensure that the subsidy is used in line with your specific care needs.


All Approved Providers charge various fees for this service. The Provider you choose will heavily impact the amount of funding you have available for your care services, and because of this is one of the most important decisions you can make.


Each Provider’s fees are different.


All approved Providers charge management fees, however, these fees vary greatly between different management models. Here are the most common examples:


Full Case management mode: Providers that use the case management model charge administrative management fees and case management fees, which together usually account for about 35% of the total approved package for the elderly;


Self-management model: With self-management fees are generally exceptionally lower than with Full Case Management. For example, at Happy Living we charge just 13% of the funds.



The following chart compares the differences between the two management models in terms of fees:


Some Other Providers Self-Manage in Happy Living
Management Fee 35% 13%
(Approx.) services hour per week Level 1—1.5-2 Hours

Level 2—3-4 Hours

Level 3—7-8 Hours

Level 4—10-11 Hours

Level 1—3-4 Hours

Level 2—6-7 Hours

Level 3—14-15 Hours

Level 4—22-23 Hours

(Approx.) remain fund per week Level 1—$100

Level 2—$180

Level 3—$340

Level 4—$590

Level 1—$150

Level 2—$255

Level 3—$560

Level 4—$850


In addition, a lot of Providers charge additional hidden fees. These fees eat up a lot of your package funds, so it’s important to know about them when you’re doing your research. Here are some of the fees:


Set-up fee and Exit fee: Generally, between $200-$600;


Daily Care fee: Generally, $9-12 per day;


The following chart compares the differences in fees charged by various Providers for these items:


Some Other Provider Happy Living
Set-up Fee Yes No
Exit Yes No
Daily Care Fee Yes No


Management fees can also determine how much funds you have left available for the care services you need.


If you are required to pay more management fees to the provider, it means that there are fewer funds available for personal care services.


However, if you choose to self-manage your Home Care Package with Happy Living at a low flat fixed rate of 13% you can enjoy up to double the amount of services than that with another Provider.


For example, John is allocated a Level 1 Home Care Package, which gives him approximately $8750 of funds per year. If he chooses a Traditional fully case-managed Provider, at about 35%. Then 35% of his package is deducted, plus various additional fees. He will then be required to use a higher-priced internal nursing service team, rather than service providers of his choice. This decision may only give him access to 2 hours of services per week.


However, if John decides to self-manage his Home Care Package with Happy Living, at 13%, and no other fees, he could double his amount of funding available compared to that with a traditional Provider. The other advantage is that he would be freely able to choose the lower-priced nursing service staff of his choice. Calculated in this way, with the same Level 1 Home Care Package, he could have access to up to 4 hours of services per week.


When you look at this example, it’s clear that management fees determine your ability to enjoy more services with the same funding.


If the management cost of the Provider is too high, there won’t be enough funding available to meet other care needs after completing the basic care services. This phenomenon is particularly obvious for the lower-level package owners.


If you choose a traditional Provider, even if you receive a higher level of Home Care Package, after deducting a large amount of expenses, your care service needs are unable to be fully satisfied.


The advantage of choosing Happy Living, is even with a lower level package, you will still have more funding available for the care service and items you need to live at home the way you want to.