What to look for when choosing telecare
Telecare wireless alarms and sensors are a low cost way of staying safe and helping you live in your own home for as long as you want to.
Should I rent or buy?
You can either rent or buy alarms and sensors, but renting would make it easier to change things if you needed something different in the future.
Getting a good service
Getting a good service and being confident about inviting a company into your home is really important. A company that is registered and approved by the Telecare Services Association code of practice is something to look out for. Choosing a good company means that they:
- are checked each year to make sure they are meeting the quality standards
- use people who will have had a criminal record check
- allow you time to consider if telecare is for you
- will explain how much telecare will cost
- will be clear about how you can complain if you are not happy
Alarms and sensors look after you 24 hours every day, but they need to be connected to a centre that can do this for you, this is called a monitoring centre. You should look for someone who can rent you the equipment and provide the monitoring.
You'll need people (family or friends) who live close by that the monitoring centre can call to help you if you are in trouble. They will need to feel comfortable with coming out to you both day and night. If you don't have anyone, look for a company that offers to rent the telecare, monitor it and send someone out if you're in difficulties.
How would someone get into my home if I were in trouble
Lots of people have a coded key safe fitted to the outside of their homes. The monitoring centre holds the code and will share this with your named person to enable them to get into your house if you were in difficulties. The monitoring centre would only disclose the code in an emergency and its easy to change the code whenever you want to.
You can often buy the key safe from the company that you get the telecare from, sometimes they will even put it on the wall for you too. However, key safes are also on sale in most DIY stores and some are police approved.
If you are worried about the cost, it's still worth talking to someone about telecare, they will know if there is help to pay. What ever the cost it can be better for you and cheaper than moving home.
What am I entitled to?
The local authority is here to help everyone understand their needs and, if required, provide an assessment.
For more information about what help you are entitled to, please see the Who can get help from Adult Services web pages.
Try our online self assessment