Residential and nursing care homes

If you’re finding it difficult to live independently at home you may be considering moving into a care home. But most of us would want to stay in our home for as long as possible. That’s easier to do if you feel safe, and have the independence to do the things you want to do.

Our living independently section has many solutions to help you to continue to live at home.

Living independently.

And there are other solutions to avoid moving into a care home in our Housing section, including moving to be closer to a relative who can support you, or moving into a home that's more suited to your needs.


As well as this information, the Council’s First Contact Team can give you, or your family and friends, ideas of how you can support yourself and how to proceed.

Sheffield City Council: First Contact Team.

If you still feel you need to move into a care home, there are a number of steps to help you work out what type of home you want and how to plan to choose a home and then your move into the home. It's important to consider all your options as there are different schemes that offer some support but allow you to keep some of your independence.

Types of independent living.

Choosing a residential or nursing care home.

Paying for your place in the home.

Living in a care home.

Types of independent living

There are alternatives to moving into a residential care home that offer support but also allow you to retain more of your independence for longer.

This includes sheltered housing, extra care housing and independent retirement living with care. Find out more.

Independent living for older people.

Choosing a residential care or nursing home

A residential home provides 24 hour care by trained staff and is regularly visited by a district nurse. The type of care provided is similar to the care that you would get if a relative or friend looked after you (including washing and dressing, meals and going to the toilet). You can stay in a home for a short time (known as respite care) or live there permanently.

There are special homes for people with a learning disability, a physical or sensory impairment, a mental health problem, or a drug or alcohol problem.

A nursing home provides care like a residential home, but also provides 24 hour nursing care by trained nursing staff. The person in charge is always a qualified doctor or nurse.

For both a residential and nursing home you would get:

  • your own room.
  • help to be as independent as possible.
  • 24 hour care support.
  • help with washing and dressing, at meal times and with going to the toilet.

When choosing a home don’t forget what’s important to you! This could be being close to family and friends, socialising, taking part in a local activity, or being able to enjoy time outdoors.

Homes in Sheffield differ in location, size, the special services they provide, equipment available and the cost. So it’s always important to keep in the back of your mind those things that you feel are most important to you when choosing a home.

Consider the cost of your place carefully. If you later need help from the Council to help pay for your place, you must be living in a home that charges the rate the Council pays for care. Otherwise, you will need a relative, friend or charity to pay the difference. There's more information about paying for care in a home below.

Which home will I like?

We often hear that people find it easier to make a decision about the home they want to live in, after they have paid a visit.

Therefore, we strongly recommend that you and your family and/or friends visit all the homes you’re interested in, and consider visiting them at different times of day.

If you need help to visit some care homes Sheffield Churches Council for Community Care can help.

Their Placement Support Scheme offers free support for you and a family member to visit 3 different homes in a wheelchair-accessible vehicle/taxi.

Sheffield Churches Council for Community Care: Placement Support Scheme.

What happens if the home I choose is full?

If the home is full you can choose to live in a similar home while you wait. Then when a place is available you can choose either to move or stay where you are (this will depend on your individual circumstances).

What if I don’t want to go into another home temporarily?

If you’re not at risk you can arrange support so you can stay in your home until a vacancy is available. But if you’re at risk, or if your care and support can only be provided by living in a home, you will need to live in a different home temporarily until there’s a vacancy in the home where you want to live.

Ask lots of questions!

There are lots of things to think about when choosing a home, so to make things easier for you we’ve created a handy checklist of key questions to ask when choosing or visiting a home.

Checklist: Choosing a home (PDF, 172 KB).

All the homes in Sheffield must register with the Care Quality Commission (CQC). The CQC makes sure the homes meet minimum standards of good service, and then inspect the services regularly. On the CQC you can find the ratings for all homes in Sheffield and read their inspection report. We strongly advise you to read the most recent reports for the homes you are considering, because the standards in homes can alter for a variety of reasons.

Care Quality Commission (CQC): Find a care home.

You can contact the CQC through their website or by writing to CQC Customer Service Centre, City Gate, Gallowgate, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE1 4PA. Or call them on 03000 616161.

You can find all local residential care and nursing home in Sheffield in the directory.

Residential care and nursing homes.

You can also download a document with contact details for every home in Sheffield.

List: Sheffield care homes February 2024 (PDF, 327 KB).

You can also view care homes that are on Sheffield City Council's Care Homes Framework. A quality framework introduced in May 2024.

Sheffield City Council's Care Homes Framework.

Paying for your place in a home

Moving into a home can be expensive. We strongly recommend you get independent financial advice when planning for your long-term care and setting up the care and support you need.

All Independent Financial Advisors have to register with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), who regulate the financial services industry in the UK.

Advisors must explain to you how much their advice will cost and should set out charges in a clear way, so that you understand how much you are paying and what for. There may be extra charges for looking after your investments or providing advice on a regular basis. If you're getting investment advice, ask your adviser if the costs include a review of your investments from time to time or if you must pay for that service separately.

Get a list of authorised Independent Financial Agents and more about the FCA on their website.

Financial Conduct Authority: The Financial Services Register.

Many charities and national organisations give advice on long-term planning for your care and support needs, including the national Money Helper website.

Money Helper: arranging long-term care for you or for a loved one.

Money Helper: options for self-funding care and support.

Call: 0800 138 7777.

Type talk: 18001 0800 915 4622.


Age UK help people to work out how much care and support costs and how to pay for care at home or residential care.

Age UK: Paying for care.

Call: 0800 678 1602.

Age UK has a local branch based at South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue, 197 Eyre Street, S1 3FG.

Age UK Sheffield.

Call: 0114 250 2850.


Independent Age gives free and impartial advice about care and support, money and benefits, and health and mobility.

Independent Age: Paying for care in a care home.

Call: 0800 319 6789 or 020 7605 4200.


Paying for Care is a not-for-profit company that helps people to plan how to pay care fees. Their website has detailed advice and calculators, and a list of advisers.

Paying for Care: Paying care home fees.

The Association of Lifetime Lawyers is a specialist legal service for older and vulnerable people. Find details of their members on their website. They used to be called Solicitors for the Elderly.

Association of Lifetime Lawyers: Find a lawyerHelping you plan for later life.

Call: 0844 567 6173.

The Society of Later Life Advisers helps people find trusted, accredited financial advisers who can help people plan for their retirement years. 

Society of Later Life Advisers: Paying for advice.

Call: 0333 2020 454.


Which? Later Life Care gives independent information to help people make care choices. Their website has detailed advice about funding and paying for care and support.

Which? Later Life Care: Care home fees.

The National Careline gives support and information to the older people and their families, including paying for care and getting financial advice.

The National Careline: Choosing a care home.

Call: 0800 0699 784.


First Stop Advice give free and impartial advice for older people and their families. Advice on housing options and how to live independently, as well as care homes and nursing homes.

First Stop Advice: Choosing and paying for a care home.

If you are entering into a legal agreement with the Council or someone else (such as for a deferred payment agreement) you should also consider taking legal advice (for example from your solicitor. You can find details of local solicitors on the Sheffield Law Society website.

Sheffield Law Society: About the Society.

Call: 0114 698 7155.

Citizens Advice give information about getting free or low cost legal advice.

Citizens Advice: Finding free or affordable legal help.

You can also check you are getting the benefits you are entitled to:

Support from Sheffield City Council

If you need support from the Council to help you pay for your care in the home you’ll need a Financial Assessment to work out what you can afford to pay towards the cost of your support, and what the Council will contribute.

The Council will:

  • help you to work out if there are any benefits you can get to support you financially, like state benefits.
  • help you to complete a Financial Assessment. This can be by email, post, phone or visit.
  • tell you what you need to pay, and what the Council will contribute.

The Council has a detailed guide on how they work out how much you can afford to pay towards the cost of your care and support.

Sheffield City Council: Your guide to paying for social care support in a care home (PDF, 280 KB).

Living in a home

Personal allowance

While you live in the home you will have a personal allowance. This is an amount of money that you must get to pay for personal items while you live in a home. Your personal allowance can’t be used to pay for your place in a home. It should be used to pay for things like newspapers or magazines and for your personal care such as hairdressing and toiletries.

Visiting rights

All the homes in Sheffield should encourage you to receive visitors and to keep in touch with your family and friends. The Care Quality Commission have given advice to homes to make sure they know how important it is for you to maintain relationships with people important to you.

What happens if I move into a residential home, and later require nursing care?

Tell the home manager or matron, as well as your family and/or friends. A nursing assessor will then decide if nursing care is required. If nursing care is required NHS Sheffield will pay for this.

What if I am living in a home and I don’t like it?

After you move into a home there’s always a trial period of up to four weeks. During this trial period if, for whatever reason the home is not suitable, there is an opportunity to move home. You or your family/friend should speak to the home manager or matron.

Making a complaint

If you have a comment, compliment or complaint about a home there are several things you can do.

  • Tell the staff at the home that you see every day.

  • Speak with the person in charge of running the home. They are usually called the manager or matron.

  • Speak with the ‘residents committee’ where you can put forward your ideas on running the home.

  • Contact the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

    Call: 03000 616161.

    Write to: CQC Customer Service Centre, City Gate, Gallowgate, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE1 4PA.

  • Contact the Council. Visit the First Point desk at Howden House in the city centre (at 1 Union Street).

    Sheffield City Council: Contact Customer Services.

    Call: 0114 273 4567.

You can also contact Healthwatch Sheffield about any concerns you have. Healthwatch is your local consumer watchdog for health and social care. They’re independent from the statutory authorities and the NHS, and exist to make sure everyone can have a say in how services are designed and run. You can talk to them about your experience of using health services (like GPs, dentists, opticians, pharmacies and hospitals) and social care services (like home care and care homes).

They want to hear about what’s working well, as well as what can be improved. Your feedback is used to help influence and make recommendations on how to improve local services.

Healthwatch Sheffield: Share your views.

Call: 0114 253 6688.


Write to: Healthwatch Sheffield, The Circle, 33 Rockingham Lane, Sheffield S1 4FW.

Care Rights UK supports people to sort out problems with their care. They can give advice on your rights and how to use them, helping to empower you to get the support you need.

Care Rights UK: Get support.

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