Adult family homes (AFHs) house two to six residents, and are available to anyone over 18 who needs support or supervision. The homes include such amenities as a room, laundry service, personal care and licensed supervision. Services vary according to the needs of each resident, as well as the capabilities of each provider. These assisted living facilities encourage residents to make the accommodations feel like home, including decorating with personal belongings, having guests over and participating in their community as much as they are able.

For a loved one that is suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s, this type of facility might be a good fit because she would get more individualized care, and she would probably adapt better to a home environment.

Available Services

Some adult family homes can provide all levels of care including skilled nursing care.  Your loved one can have a private bedroom, but she will have to share the living space with two to six people. Meals are also provided for the residents.

The services available each senior care facility vary. Some provide nursing services, including a nurse delegator to assist in wound care or glucometer testing. Some residents are able to access the services of outside agencies during their residency. For example, home health care service workers can provide injections, patient education, and intravenous therapy, among other necessary treatments. 

Choosing an Adult Family Home

When looking for an adult family home, be sure to tour the facilities. Some questions you should ask are:

  • What are the costs per month and what services does that cover?
  • What level of care can they provide?
  • What kind of training has the staff had? For example, did they receive training in handling Alzheimer patients?
  • If your parent requires a restricted diet because of food allergies or other conditions, can they accommodate her.
  • Are pets allowed?
  • What type of activities are done with the residents?
  • Is transportation offered?
  • How will they coordinate services with hospice? For example, some facilities prefer to shower their own residents and do not want hospice to take care of that.
  • Whether it is run by a family, couple or individual
  • If it has a particular cultural focus
  • If the spoken language meets the needs of the resident

Also talk with the residents because they will give you a feel for what living at the facility is like on a daily basis. Check with the state to see if there have been any complaints filed against the adult family home.

Staff Qualifications

All adult family homes must have adequate staff for the number of residents. Those who provide hands-on care as “long-term care workers” must have completed the minimum training requirements and passed a one-time national fingerprint check. Additionally, staff who interact with residents unsupervised must have completed a background check and must repeat the check every two years.


Adult family homes can be a viable and affordable option. Since there are many types of adult family homes that offer different levels of assistance and care, you will have to find the one that is best suited for your loved one needs.

The cost of residency depends on the level of care the individual requires. The cost may also change as the needs of the resident change, including alterations in health or mobility. Families find out also that adult family homes are more affordable than the alternative options.

In the larger assisted living facility or nursing home, caregivers normally cannot stay with each resident for an extended period of time. If you hired caregivers from an outside agency to come and stay with your loved one for several hours a day, it can be extremely expensive. Adult family homes tend to be less costly for 24-hour care.

Adult Family Homes offer the best of both worlds. Your loved one can live in a home environment, but can also receive assistance with bathing, eating and other health care needs. It can also give you the peace of mind to know that your loved one is being cared for 24 hours a day.

Contact Elderly Connections today at 1-855-377-7367 to talk to one of our experienced placement advisors and find out which type of facility might be best for you.

April Johnson
April JohnsonSenior Placement Advisor

April is a a mother of two and a humanitarian. She holds a Bachelors Degree in psychology and has a background in human resources. Before joining Elderly Connections as a Senior Care Advisor she spent some time as a grief support counselor for bereaved parents.

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