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Home care
Find out about care at home, adaptations and technology to help you stay independent in your own home for longer.
Financing care
Learn about funding options for home care, home adaptations and care homes, together with Attendance Allowance, gifting assets and Power of Attorney.
Housing options
Consider your options and learn about sheltered housing, retirement villages and care homes.
End of life
Guidance to help you through the emotional and practical steps of losing a loved one, from coping with bereavement to arranging a funeral.

Nursing homes

Nursing homes care for older people who can no longer look after themselves and need nursing care. We explain what how much they might cost and finding a suitable home.
2 min read
In this article
How do nursing homes differ from residential homes? How much does a nursing home cost? Nursing homes near me or my family member
Activities in a nursing home Choosing a nursing home over a residential care home

How do nursing homes differ from residential homes?

Nursing homes are like residential care homes, providing living accommodation, usually in an en suite room, with meals in a dining area and personal care, such as washing, dressing and going to the toilet. However, nursing homes also provide medical care from a qualified nurse who is on site 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

How much does a nursing home cost?

Research by LaingBuisson for its Care of Older People UK market report (May 2018) indicates that the average weekly cost of nursing care in the UK in the financial year 2017–18 was £856; or £44,500 per year.


For more detailed information about the cost of care in any local authority in England, use our cost of care and eligibility tool.

Cost of care and eligibility in England
Use our simple tool to find out how much care might cost in England and what financial support is available.

If you live in Scotland or Northern Ireland, you can find out more information about the cost of care homes in our article about care home fees.

Nursing homes near me or my family member

You can also use our care services directory to help you to search for nursing homes near you or your family member. You can  filter the directory to search for, say, nursing homes that specialise in dementia care.

Care homes near you
Use our directory to find local residential and nursing care homes across the UK.


Activities in a nursing home


A nursing home will inevitably have fewer active residents than in a residential care home, but this doesn’t mean that activities won’t be organised. Many nursing homes will organise events such as small groups playing or singing music, storytellers and visiting dogs.


In addition, there will be visiting professionals, such as:

  • local GP
  • district nurse
  • physiotherapist
  • chiropodist
  • holistic therapists
  • hairdresser
  • vicar, priest or leader from other religious denominations.

Choosing a nursing home over a residential care home

The circumstances of your loved one’s health may well mean that this decision is taken out of your hands. With the average age of residents moving into care now being 85 years old, and a greater number of people living in their own homes for longer with assistance, it’s increasingly likely that you’ll be choosing a nursing home rather than a residential care home.


However, if you’re in any doubt, our article when should you consider a care home will help guide you.

Further reading

Visiting a care home

Prepare yourself with questions to ask when choosing a care home, find out about fees, and have a good look around.

Care home contracts

We explain what should be in a good care home contract, who is involved and what to do if you spot any problems.

Last updated: 24 Sep 2018