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Home Helpers Review11 minute read

11 minute read

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Updated for December, 2018

OVERALL RATING
Services & Organization
Consumer Reviews
Value

Some companies offer a wide range of home care options, while others tend to focus on lower-level help aimed at keeping the client’s household running smoothly. Home Helpers falls into the latter category, focusing on essential companionship and housekeeping help for seniors who need it (though some locations do offer higher-level care as well). In addition the company offers care dedicated to Alzheimer’s and dementia sufferers, and—through its Direct Link medical alert system— support even for those who don’t need in-home care,. For those looking for basic services at a reasonable price, Home Helpers is an excellent choice.

Pros
  • Provides clients with medical alert systems
  • Specializes in post-operative care
  • Focuses on lower level non-medical care
Cons
  • Relatively limited range of services offered

Alzheimer’s and dementia care

Alzheimer’s and dementia care

Alzheimer’s and dementia care

Services Offered

  • Companionship
  • Grooming/hygiene
  • Light housekeeping
  • Laundry
  • Meal planning and prep
  • Transportation
  • Social escort services
  • Mobility assistance
  • Feeding
  • Skilled nursing care
  • Respite care
  • Pre- and post-operation assistance
  • Alzheimer’s and dementia care

Home Helpers Review

Many seniors respond to the challenges of aging by moving out of their homes and into various forms of senior housing that can accommodate their need for assistance. Many seniors, however, choose instead to bring help into their homes so that they can continue to age in familiar surroundings in the communities they love. As the name implies, home care agencies specialize in providing that in-home care, and Home Helpers is one of the country’s largest home care agencies. While not all locations offer as wide a range of services as some competitors, the company nevertheless has a solid record in online reviews and a reputation for providing care at reasonable rates.

Founded in 1997, Home Helpers is one of the country’s oldest home care companies, and with 300 independently operated franchises, it’s also among the nation’s largest. And while operating on a franchise model means that the company doesn’t directly control each location, the national organization does provide training for franchise owners. It also sets standards, such as for Home Helpers’ hiring process, which involves conducting three interviews, performing background checks, and looking into each caregiver’s references. In addition, the company puts caregivers through extensive training before sending them out into the field, and provides continuing education opportunities through its “Home Helpers University” program.

To get a sense of the company from the inside, we looked at employee reviews at job listing sites like Glassdoor and Indeed, and what we found was interesting: while the company got about average ratings compared with its home care industry competitors, fewer than half of the employees reviewing the company at Glassdoor said that they’d recommend it to their peers, suggesting that turnover could be a problem among caregivers.

“This is a great place to work. Almost everyone, from the office assistant all the way up to the CEO, has worked as a CNA or in the home health care industry and understands the demands of the job. If you’re looking to work for understanding and compassionate people this is the place to be.”

Alpharetta, GA (via Indeed)

“Small, local franchise that makes communication with management and other staff easy and accessible!”

Wheaton, IL (via Glassdoor)

“Home Helpers was a great company to work with. I loved the team and everything about the company. The only reason I left was because of a personal family matter and was unable to continue working with them.”

Lansdale, PA (via Indeed)

Services Rating

Companionship

Home Helpers does focus on lower-level care for its clients, and offers companionship, light housekeeping, help with grooming and hygiene, transportation and other services meant to keep the client socialized and help them through the standard activities of daily living.

Higher-level Care


Some locations also offer specialized medical care: in particular, they offer help with wound and catheter care and other semi-permanent interventions, and help recovering from surgery or injuries. It’s essential to contact your local office to see if they offer the type of higher-level care you need.

Direct Link medical alert system:

Billing itself as a “Personal Emergency Response System,” Direct Link is a medical alert system that the company provides and installs in order to allow clients to alert caregivers and family members in the event they need help. The system includes 24/7/365 monitoring and an initial consultation to ensure that the client gets the system that will suit them best.

Safe-proofing service:

As part of its suite of homemaker’s services, Home Helpers offers some useful help with safety issues around the home, including replacing batteries in smoke detectors and other safety alert systems, replacing air filters, and eliminating tripping hazards and other contributors to falls and injuries.

Alzheimer’s and dementia care:

Home Helpers gives its dementia caregivers specialized training in dealing with clients with cognitive issues, and many of its front-line staff are certified in Alzheimer’s care.

“This is a great place to work. Almost everyone, from the office assistant all the way up to the CEO, has worked as a CNA or in the home health care industry and understands the demands of the job. If you’re looking to work for understanding and compassionate people this is the place to be.”

Alpharetta, GA (via Indeed)

“Small, local franchise that makes communication with management and other staff easy and accessible!”

Wheaton, IL (via Glassdoor)

“Home Helpers was a great company to work with. I loved the team and everything about the company. The only reason I left was because of a personal family matter and was unable to continue working with them.”

Lansdale, PA (via Indeed)

It’s important to always keep in mind that home care companies tend to work as franchises, and that most local offices are independently owned and operated. That means that problems at a single location probably won’t be an indicator of problems anywhere else. Praise for any particular location may not reflect the quality at all locations either, however, and you should take care to get references from your local franchises before choosing a company as your home care provider. At the same time, if you look at a broad sample of online reviews, it’s possible to see some trends emerge that do speak to the quality of the entire company. For that reason, we looked at over 100 reviews of Home Helpers posted online at Google, Yelp, and other forums. After collecting all these reviews and tallying their ratings, we came up with an overall weighted rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars for Home Helpers, and we noticed the following trends.

Consistent praise for service: Among the trends we noted was consistent satisfaction with Home Helpers’ frontline caregivers. This is standard in the industry: relatively few people take on such jobs without an instinct to be compassionate and a genuine desire to help. Still, though, it’s a good sign that, apart from a couple of complaints about particular caregivers, customers’ experience was overwhelmingly positive.

Appreciation for office staff: Home Helpers administrative staff got almost as much praise as the caregivers, and warranted fewer specific complaints among reviewers. This makes Home Helpers stand out in a home care industry consistently plagued by issues related to scheduling and billing, and by difficulties in staffing.

Trust and dependability: When it came to reliability—the punctuality, work ethic, and consistency of their caregivers—Home Helpers also stood out, with reviewers giving the company top marks in this respect, suggesting again that customers can expect a smooth experience if they choose Home Helpers for their care.

“Home Helpers has been wonderful for us. Our caregiver has been exceptional. She is kind, courteous, punctual and very dedicated to helping us. The office staff is extremely cordial and attentive in helping us with any questions we have. I recommend Home Helpers to anyone who needs this kind of assistance.”

Bluffton, SC (via Google)

“I am extremely pleased with the constantly high quality of care that Home Helpers provides. I have been a client of theirs for seven years and they have been most reliable. They are kind and considerate and most accommodating when I need a change in schedule. The helpers that they send are all top notch.”

Allison Park, PA (via Seniorservicereviews.com)

“Although we wound up having three different helpers, each one was prompt, pleasant, helpful and in general a really nice person. In fact, I worried a bit as we’d have a new helper… and they started great and just kept getting better. Home Helpers was flexible with scheduling since we weren’t quite sure what we’d need. Also, their rates were reasonable.”

Half Moon Bay, CA (via Yelp)

Consumer Reviews Rating

Just as quality of service can vary between different franchised locations, costs can vary as well—not simply because of differences in management, but also because of the types of care needed, local regulation, and local costs of living. At the same time, it can be useful to look at trends within a company, and we surveyed a number of locations across the country and compared their rates to the local median rates as listed by the Cost of Care study published by Genworth Financial.

Based on this survey, Home Helpers locations came in right in line with their local competition, with some locations charging a little less than what you might expect. Some locations do, however, require a minimum number of hours per visit, and while the national website states that this is not the case, some local franchises do charge on a package model, where clients pay a set rate for a range of hours, giving the clients the flexibility to get more hours than scheduled if needed. All locations do offer a free initial consultation, however, which should allow clients and administrators to decide on the amount of care needed before services are provided.

With its focus on training caregivers in lower-level care, and with its locations offering competitive rates, Home Helpers is certainly worth a look for those needing help in the basic activities of daily living. Some locations also provide higher level services, and given the company’s track record of quality care, Home Helpers may also be worth a look for those with more complex care needs as well.