Deferred payment agreements (DPA)

If you own your home, a DPA allows you to use its value to secure an agreement with the council to pay for your long-term residential care.

How does the agreement work?

If you are a home owner, we will assess your finances and set a weekly care charge based on your income which you must pay the council.

The remaining balance of your residential care placement is deferred until you are ready to sell your home, or it is paid out of your estate.

The example below illustrates how this works:

  • the full cost of your residential care placement is £500 per week
  • your assessed care charge based on your income is £200 per week
  • the difference between the £500 and the £200 is £300 - this £300 per week is deferred until you are ready to sell your home

If you are on a very low income, the full cost of your residential care placement can be deferred.

You can also ask for a 'loan-style DPA' secured against your home. This is where the council loans you the money for your residential care placement. You can ask us for further information about this scheme during your assessment.

How much will it cost?

We will charge a fixed fee of £400 to set up a DPA and an annual fee of £124 for ongoing administration costs whilst the DPA is in place. Interest will also be charged on the outstanding debt. The maximum interest rate to be charged is fixed by the government and is reviewed on 1st January and 1st July each year. Currently it is 1.55 per cent, as of 1st July 2022.

You can pay the set up and annual fees as and when they are charged, or add them to the amount you will eventually repay. All fees relate to the cost to Liverpool City Council for administering a DPA only and are subject to review at any time.

Who is eligible?

You should be eligible for a DPA if you:

  • Are receiving care in a care home or nursing home (or you are going to move into one soon).
  • Own, or have part ownership of, your home (unless your partner or certain others live there).
  • Have savings and investments of less than £23,250 (not including the value of your home or your pension pot).

How do I find out if I am eligible?

When you decide to move into residential care you will be asked to help us carry out an assessment of your finances.

If you are eligible for a DPA we will offer it to you when this assessment has been completed. 

I need residential care but my partner still lives in our home

Provided your partner lives in your home as their main or only home, and you are not estranged or divorced, we will exclude the value of your home when we work out how much you will have to contribute towards the cost of your care.

When circumstances change

In the event that the property is sold or the service user dies you, or someone acting on your behalf, should complete the care payment enquiry form to request an update of your account.

The Residential Social Care Charging Team will contact you with a redemption figure. Cases will be prioritised in order of urgency where a house sale is involved, but you can expect a response within 5 to 10 working days.

I am eligible for a DPA but I do not want one

If you don't want a DPA you will be classed as a self-funder which means you would be expected to pay all your home fees from another source.

If you need advice on paying for your care, you can seek independent financial advice.

Further information