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How Much Do Nursing Homes Cost? A State-By-State Guide

31 minute readLast updated May 19, 2023
Written by Merritt Whitley, senior living writer and editor
Reviewed by Lucinda Ortigao, CFPLucinda Ortigao is president of Cape Investment Consulting Inc. and is a Certified Financial Planner.
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If your loved one needs significant medical care, a nursing home may be the right senior living choice. With a median cost of $9,034 a month for a private room, nursing homes are generally more expensive than other types of senior living. That’s because of the high-level medical care they offer, including on-site medical professionals and round-the-clock supervision, as well as therapies and amenities designed for people with significant physical or cognitive care needs.

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Key Takeaways

  1. The median cost of a private room in a nursing home in the U.S. is $297 a day. That equates to $9,034 a month or $108,405 a year.
  2. Nursing homes aren’t right for everyone. They typically are best for people who have serious, chronic conditions and require 24-hour care.
  3. The average cost varies greatly depending on the state. The Midwest and the South generally have the lowest median prices.
  4. Explore care options and find the best fit. Use our free assessment to find care options that fit your loved one’s needs and budget.

Exploring nursing home costs

The national median daily cost for a private room in a nursing home in 2021 was $297 per day, and the average cost of a semi-private room was $260 per day, according to Genworth’s most recent Cost of Care Survey.[01]

While it’s common to seek out the average cost of living in a nursing home, it’s more practical to consider the median cost instead. Median means half the prices are higher and half are lower in any given area. Averages can be misleading in places with many luxury nursing homes or several budget-friendly options. A high number of either can skew data.

Here’s a breakdown of median nursing home costs by day, month, and year.

Type of accommodationDaily costMonthly costAnnual cost
Semi-private room$260$7,908$94,900
Private room$297$9,034$108,405

Factors that affect nursing home costs

Facilities offer different options and features, and these differences can drastically change the cost of the nursing home.

“The cost of a nursing home depends on various factors that the family generally can’t control, such as the state, location, and needs of the residents,” says Michael Leitson, former senior data manager at the American Health Care Association, a federation of 50 state health organizations representing more than 12,000 nursing homes and long-term care facilities.

Seniors may have the opportunity to choose options that better fit their budget and individual needs, depending on the nursing homes available in their area.

Location affects nursing home care costs

Nursing home costs vary greatly across the country the same way cost of living, salaries, and taxes do. States with a higher cost of living, such as Hawaii or New York, typically have higher average nursing home costs compared to states with a lower cost of living, like Kansas or Arkansas.

Similarly, there may be a cost difference between facilities in rural and urban areas. The demographic percentage of seniors in a given area may also affect costs due to supply and demand. Below, we’ll explore nursing home costs by location in greater depth.

Room selection affects nursing home costs

Whether your loved one chooses to live alone or in a shared space with another person can make a big difference in the cost of nursing home care.

It’s usually more expensive to select a private room, as shown in the table above. In 2021, there was a 12% monthly cost difference between private and semi-private rooms. So, if your aging relative would benefit from companionship and like to save some money, a shared room may be the better option.

Luxury amenities influence the cost of nursing homes

Nursing homes are designed to provide the physical, cognitive, and medical care aging adults need. Most facilities offer daily activities and therapies, as well as social spaces and meals focused on senior nutrition.

However, luxury senior living is becoming more common in some areas. Seniors may be able to choose to pay a premium to reside in a community that curates a luxurious senior-friendly lifestyle in opulent surroundings. This phenomenon is especially noticeable in major metros, such as New York City.

Nursing home costs can also range from budget-conscious to high-end. A high-priced nursing home may be more than $30,000 a month for a single room, while a more affordable, shared room option with limited amenities may be around $5,000 a month.

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What’s included in the cost of nursing home care?

In nursing homes, residents typically have a variety of chronic medical needs and require help with several activities of daily living (ADLs), such as bathing, dressing, and using the toilet.

In the most recent government survey on nursing homes, more than half of residents needed assistance with five ADLs: bathing, dressing, toileting, transferring, and eating.[03] That’s more daily help than assisted living residents typically require.

Nursing home residents receive 24-hour care and medical supervision from licensed medical professionals. Nursing home services include skilled nursing care, such as wound care, injections, catheter care, and dialysis. These services aren’t commonly offered in other types of senior living communities like independent or assisted living.

“The number one reason that nursing homes are so expensive is because they require a lot of nurses and staff members to care for residents,” says Leitson.

Additional services include medication management, meals, and housekeeping.

Your loved one’s care needs may affect nursing home costs

Some nursing homes have a set monthly cost, while others offer services a la carte.

When you and your family tour or research nursing homes, you can request a cost-per-service breakdown. This breakdown may outline the costs of room and board, on-site medical care and mental health counseling, transportation fees to off-site medical care, activities fees, recreation fees, and entertainment fees.

Some nursing homes also have one-time entrance fees, which may or may not be refundable at the end of a senior’s stay.

Certain medical care needs, such as insulin injections or transportation to dialysis, may cost extra. Sometimes facilities also charge by the number of ADLs a senior needs help with — for example, someone who can use the toilet independently but needs assistance with bathing would pay less each month than someone who requires help with both.[03]

Nursing home costs by state

Location plays a major role in nursing home costs because, as mentioned above, the cost of living can vary significantly from state to state.

The top five most expensive states for nursing home care in 2021 were as follows:

  • Alaska
  • Connecticut
  • Hawaii
  • Massachusetts
  • New York

The top five least expensive states were as follows:

  • Missouri
  • Louisiana
  • Oklahoma
  • Arkansas
  • Kansas

Learn more about nursing home costs in all 50 states and the District of Columbia in the table below.

State2021 median daily nursing home cost (private room)2021 median monthly nursing home cost (private room)2021 median daily nursing home cost (semi-private room)2021 median monthly nursing home cost (semi-private room)Cost of living index (first quarter of 2022)**
District of Columbia$345$10,494$345$10,494158.8
New Hampshire$395$12,015$360$10,950117.4
New Jersey$400$12,151$370$11,254112.9
New Mexico$275$8,365$250$7,60493.9
New York$435$13,233$420$12,775152.1
North Carolina$270$8,213$246$7,48395
North Dakota$414$12,587$394$11,97896.8
Rhode Island$330$10,038$310$9,429112.8
South Carolina$263$7,984$240$7,28593.9
South Dakota$250$7,604$234$7,11895.2
West Virginia$402$12,212$382$11,61990.5

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Nursing home costs by city

From 2012 to 2016, 13.8% of people 65 years and older resided in urban areas, as noted by the United States Census Bureau.[04] Like costs vary by states, nursing home prices also vary from city to city. Local wages, availability of nursing home staff, cost of living, and other factors influence the costs of nursing homes in these urban areas.

The table below highlights highly populated metro areas in the U.S. Some metros are above the nationwide median costs for nursing home care, and some are below.

MetroState2021 median daily nursing home cost (private room)2021 median monthly nursing home cost (private room)2021 median daily nursing home cost (semi-private room)2021 median monthly nursing home cost (semi-private room)
San Jose AreaCalifornia$513$15,589$390$11,863
Hartford AreaConnecticut$499$15,170$453$13,764
Boston AreaMassachusetts$474$14,402$433$13,155
Sacramento AreaCalifornia$465$14,129$350$10,646
San Francisco AreaCalifornia$463$14,068$380$11,566
Buffalo AreaNew York$446$13,559$427$12,994
Baltimore AreaMaryland$444$13,490$355$10,798
New York AreaNew York$435$13,231$410$12,471
Minneapolis AreaMinnesota$429$13,055$385$11,708
Philadelphia AreaPennsylvania$424$12,897$376$11,437
San Diego AreaCalifornia$400$12,167$309$9,384
Milwaukee AreaWisconsin$396$12,045$357$10,872
Seattle AreaWashington$394$11,984$326$9,916
Portland AreaOregon$387$11,777$351$10,661
Los Angeles AreaCalifornia$371$11,269$300$9,125
Miami AreaFlorida$358$10,904$297$9,019
Providence AreaRhode Island$355$10,798$335$10,190
Las Vegas AreaNevada$350$10,646$272$8,273
District of ColumbiaDistrict of Columbia$345$10,494$345$10,494
Detroit AreaMichigan$335$10,190$292$8,882
Orlando AreaFlorida$334$10,159$265$8,060
Denver AreaColorado$331$10,053$285$8,669
Tampa AreaFlorida$325$9,885$294$8,927
Green BayWisconsin$323$9,825$280$8,502
Virginia Beach AreaVirginia$305$9,280$277$8,410
Indianapolis AreaIndiana$295$8,973$232$7,057
Austin AreaTexas$295$8,973$195$5,931
Cleveland AreaOhio$293$8,897$276$8,395
Riverside AreaCalifornia$291$8,865$263$7,992
Atlanta AreaGeorgia$283$8,593$248$7,528
Charlotte AreaNorth Carolina$283$8,608$255$7,756
Louisville/Jefferson CountyKentucky$281$8,540$245$7,452
Dallas AreaTexas$278$8,460$185$5,627
Salt Lake CityUtah$271$8,228$245$7,437
Chicago AreaIllinois$265$8,060$230$6,996
Phoenix AreaArizona$260$7,908$211$6,418
Kansas CityMissouri$260$7,908$213$6,464
Nashville AreaTennessee$260$7,908$239$7,270
Houston AreaTexas$255$7,756$173$5,262
Raleigh AreaNorth Carolina$250$7,604$230$6,996
Oklahoma CityOklahoma$243$7,391$183$5,551
Birmingham AreaAlabama$234$7,118$223$6,768
San Antonio AreaTexas$228$6,935$172$5,232
St. LouisMissouri$222$6,737$185$5,627
New Orleans AreaLouisiana$210$6,388$195$5,931

From the above data set, the New Orleans area, St. Louis, and the San Antonio area represent metros with less expensive median costs of nursing home care. Meanwhile, the San Jose area, the Hartford area, and the Boston area had some of the most expensive costs in the above data set.

It’s worth noting that much of this data was collected in 2021, and demographics have changed significantly since then. Many seniors moved from more populated cities to traditionally suburban areas during the coronavirus pandemic. Though little research has been conducted on the effect this had on senior living prices geographically, we can assume areas that experienced a large influx of older adults likely saw rises in senior living and nursing home costs due to increased demand.

How do families pay for nursing homes?

Families can use a wide variety of resources to pay for nursing home care costs. Public funding options like Medicare, Medicaid, and VA benefits may cover parts of nursing home care depending on your loved one’s length of stay and the facility they choose. Moreover, if your loved one is an eligible veteran, a VA nursing home could be an accessible and affordable way to receive care.

Depending on your loved one’s income, much of the cost of a nursing home will be paid for with private funds and assets, including pensions, savings accounts, profits from a home sale, or gifts from family members.

It may also be worth comparing the cost of nursing home care vs. in-home care. In some cases, in-home care may be more affordable.

Read related article:How to Pay for a Nursing Home

Learning more about senior living and nursing home costs near you

The first step in understanding how much you’ll pay for senior living is identifying your loved one’s individual care needs. If they require significant daily medical care, a nursing home is likely the best option. If they only need help with ADLs or some daily assistance, less expensive assisted living options may be a better financial choice for your family.

Reach out to one of A Place for Mom’s Senior Living Advisors to discuss different types of senior living, budgetary needs, and local communities — all at no cost to you.


  1. Genworth. (2022, June 2). Cost of Care Survey.

  2. American Health Care Association. Facts & figures.

  3. Symens-Smith, A., & Trevelyan, E. (2019, April 10). The older population in rural America: 2012-2016. United States Census Bureau.

Meet the Author
Merritt Whitley, senior living writer and editor

Merritt Whitley writes and edits content for A Place for Mom, specializing in senior health, memory care, and lifestyle articles. With eight years of experience writing for senior audiences, Merritt has managed multiple print publications, social media channels, and blogs. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Eastern Illinois University.

Reviewed by

Lucinda Ortigao, CFP

The information contained on this page is for informational purposes only and is not intended to constitute medical, legal or financial advice or create a professional relationship between A Place for Mom and the reader. Always seek the advice of your health care provider, attorney or financial advisor with respect to any particular matter, and do not act or refrain from acting on the basis of anything you have read on this site. Links to third-party websites are only for the convenience of the reader; A Place for Mom does not endorse the contents of the third-party sites.

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