Assisted Living in North Carolina

Assisted Living in North Carolina

Costs and Local Resources

Discover the beautiful Tar Heel State when you explore assisted living options in North Carolina. From the Appalachian Mountains to the Piedmont and Atlantic coastal plains, this temperate state offers year-round comfort and a range of vistas to enjoy. A hub of innovation, North Carolina is home to the largest research park in the country, making its big cities as vibrant as its rural communities are quaint. From hotel-style assisted living facilities to cozy enclaves, there’s something for everyone looking for assisted living services in North Carolina.

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Cost of assisted living in North Carolina vs. nearby states

Cost of assisted living in a selection of North Carolina cities

We noticed people seem to be searching for assisted living in these North Carolina cities more frequently than others: Charlotte, Greenville, Matthews, and Pineville. We've provided their pricing here.

The cost of assisted living in North Carolina

Seniorly 2021 data shows that the average cost of assisted living in North Carolina is $3,582 per month. The national average monthly cost is $4,057. The average North Carolina is less than the national average, which is something to keep in mind as you start your senior living search. Some areas (particularly those where the cost of living is high) will be more expensive than others. Explore our assisted living listings to start comparing properties, or get in touch with one of our local advisors to get expert advice on what you can afford in the areas in which you’re interested.

Assisted living communities can provide the peace of mind that comes from not worrying about home maintenance, chores, or errands, as well as help with personal care like grooming, eating, and other activities of daily living seniors might have trouble with. However, if your loved one requires nursing care, or has diagnosed Alzheimer's or dementia that has progressed to a certain point, they might need a skilled nursing facility/home health care, or memory care community instead. These types of care providers (and for that matter, in-home care) might cost more in North Carolina than assisted living facilities, but the important thing is that your loved one’s needs are cared for in order to provide them with the best quality of life.

If your loved one currently lives in a retirement community, ask whether it is a Continuing Care Retirement Community: these senior living properties are generally designed for residents to age in place. Seniors can get the different levels of care they need, from independent living to memory care, without having to move to a different community all together.

Overall cost of living in North Carolina

North Carolina has below-average cost of living compared to other states. Behind Kentucky and Nebraska, North Carolina’s cost of living index is 94.9, where the US national average is 104.63. This is thanks to lower than average costs in general, especially when it comes to housing.

Financial assistance for assisted living in North Carolina

Medicaid options for North Carolina seniors

According to, to be eligible for North Carolina Medicaid, you must be a resident of the state of North Carolina, a U.S. national, citizen, permanent resident, or legal alien, in need of health care/insurance assistance, whose financial situation would be characterized as low income or very low income. You must also be one of the following:

  • Pregnant, or
  • Be responsible for a child 18 years of age or younger, or
  • Blind, or
  • Have a disability or a family member in your household with a disability, or
  • Be 65 years of age or older.

North Carolina's Medicaid (also called NC Medicaid) pays for medical care for children and adults with limited income and resources. Supported by Federal and State funding, there are a range of subprograms designed to help a wide variety of families and individuals who need assistance.

Several NC Medicaid programs are available to help seniors get the care options they need, such as the Non-Emergency Medical Transportation (NEMT) benefit to receive rides to medical appointments.

Non-Medicaid State assistance programs

There are a few non-Medicaid assistance programs in North Carolina, many administered by the Division of Aging and Adult Services. Adult Placement Services provides placement arrangements for a range of residential health care settings or institutions. For those who wish to find assistance to stay in their home, there is help available from the Permanent Supportive Housing Targeting Program. For more ways to find assisted living help, check the “Free assisted living resources in North Carolina'' section below.

More ways to finance assisted living in North Carolina

There are several options available to finance assisted living for yourself or a loved one. Long-term care can be financed several ways:

  • Life insurance - Some life insurance policies have a provision for long-term care benefits.
  • Long-term care insurance - This type of insurance is intended to cover long-term health care needs by covering costs for assisted living or long-term care communities.
  • Pensions, 401K, and IRA - If you have a pension, 401k, or an IRA to fall back upon this would be a great benefit in paying for assisted living costs.
  • Real Estate - Having a home is a great source of income. When it is time to move into assisted living the sale proceeds from your home can cover the costs.
  • Veteran’s benefits - While the VA will not directly cover the costs of assisted living, you can obtain help from the VA under the Veterans Aid & Attendance benefits. The Aid & Attendance benefits helps eligible veterans and their surviving spouses to pay for assistance for assistance of daily living (ADLs) activities. Aid & Attendance benefits are often referred to by other names such as “improved pension,” “VA assisted living benefit,” or “veterans elder care benefits.”

Free assisted living resources in North Carolina

North Carolina residents can explore state resources that can help answer your questions about eligibility for certain types of benefits and how they might apply to assisted living.

Find your local Area Agency on Aging. There are multiple agencies per state, enter your ZIP code or city to find the one closest to you.

The North Carolina Department of Veterans Affairs may be able to help you determine if your loved one is eligible for VA benefits.

N.C. Department of Military & Veterans Affairs where you can understand your benefits and get answers to your questions about claims.

Assisted living communities by North Carolina city

CharlotteClaremontCramertonGrahamGranite Falls
PinevilleThomasvilleWinston Salem  

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