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Health and wellness

Staying in your own home as you get older takes planning

August 1, 2023

You are happy in your home. You feel safe there and you would like to continue to spend happy and peaceful days in it as long as possible. If so, you need to carefully plan this important stage of your life, so you can enjoy it fully and peacefully.

Spending your golden years the way you want requires preparation

Whether you live alone or with your spouse, rely on the presence of a caregiver or use home support services, staying in your home as long as possible is not impossible. Ageing at home could allow you to maintain a quality of life that reflects what you want. And in addition to being in control of your social environment, you will enjoy complete freedom in terms of the frequency and duration of visits from your loved ones.

As with any major project, it is necessary to take some time to think about the different aspects to be considered. It’s best to start preparing now to enjoy your old age in peace. Here are some of the key elements to consider.

Your health status

No one is immune to health concerns that may arise over the years. That’s why it’s important to discuss the likely course of your health and the care you may need with your doctor. This will allow you to anticipate the budget that could be required for your health care or the installation of equipment to facilitate your mobility at home.

Since no one is immune to a health concern, several steps can be taken in anticipation of such a situation.


  • Power of Attorney : You can sign a power of attorney in order to designate a trusted person who could, among other things, carry out financial transactions for you, for example if you have trouble getting to the caisse.
  • Protection Mandate : It is possible, through a protection mandate, to record your wishes, namely with respect to the administration of your property or your health and well-being, in the event that you become unable to make these decisions yourself.


  • Power of attorney for property: The attorney you appoint only looks after your finances or property, in the same way as you would yourself.
  • Power of attorney for personal care: The attorney you appoint makes decisions about your personal care (healthcare, nutrition, where you live and medical treatments) on your behalf in the event you become mentally incapable.


  • Will : If you made a will in the past, or if you plan to make one, you must make sure that it is always up to date and that it corresponds to your wishes.

The personal inventory of your assets and legal documents, a useful tool at your disposal

Information about your insurance contracts, your accounts and investments, your financial obligations and your debts, the contact details of your financial advisor, etc. This is all important information to keep in a secure location so as to protect your personal information. This will allow your loved ones or the designated representative to have the necessary information on hand in case of an unforeseen event.

Not sure where to start and what not to forget? Refer to our Personal inventory of assets and legal documents tool! The document can be downloaded and printed, allowing you to keep it safe at home.

Costs to plan for

Of course, there are costs associated with living in your home as long as possible, these vary based on your health and abilities. Therefore , it is important to assess the costs of health services, personal assistance, or any other service you may need.

If you are eligible, you could benefit from free home care services offered by CLSCs (personal and hygiene care, meal assistance, housekeeping, accompaniment, transportation and others). Find out about the services available in your area and if possible, register quickly because the waiting list for these services can be long.

In addition to home care, you may need a helping hand to take care of your home. For a fee, various services are available, such as housekeeping and outdoor maintenance or snow removal. While assistance programs are available, you must still plan for these expenses.

Lastly, the golden rule is to always ensure that your home is safe regardless of your condition. Therefore, we suggest that you identify the sources of risk to your safety and determine if renovations need to be carried out to eliminate them, make walking around easier and minimize the likelihood of a fall (e.g. Reinforcing stair rails, installing grab bars in the bathroom, adding an electric stair lift, etc.).

Support programs available*

Provincial and federal governments are increasingly looking to support home care, particularly for seniors who wish to age in their homes. Several forms of financial assistance are offered and you will discover some of them below. It’s up to you to take advantage of them, if you are eligible.


Financial Assistance Program for Domestic Help Services

This program allows Quebecers over 18 years of age to benefit from a reduction in the hourly rate charged for domestic help services by social economy businesses.

Tax Credit for Home-Support Services for Seniors

This tax credit applies to eligible expenses and services for home support for persons 70 years of age or older.


Home and Community Care Support Services

Home and community services support people of all ages who require care in their home.


Home Accessibility Tax Credit

This tax credit applies to eligible expenses incurred for work carried out or goods acquired relative to eligible renovations for a person with a disability or who is 65 or older, a spouse or a close relative sharing the residence.

Your future is at home!

It is possible to continue to have good times at home and to create beautiful memories there. With careful planning leading to the purchase or rental of specific devices and accessories, access to services that simplify your life and the support of your loved ones, beautiful years await you in your home that you enjoy so much.

Don’t hesitate to contact your advisor, who will help you create a budget based on your anticipated needs and expenses and guide you towards the options available to protect your assets.

If necessary, check with social and government services so as to be directed to the right resources so you can stay in your beloved home as long as possible!

* Desjardins is not responsible for these assistance programs. Please refer to the resources indicated for more information and eligibility requirements.