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Not all referral agencies are the same

March 6, 2019

I left the largest assisted living referral service to focus solely on the California Senior housing market and be the LOCAL expert. Some online companies have local “experts” that are in other states and perhaps have never even visited our Golden State. Southern California Senior Resources (SoCal Seniors) prides ourselves on being a personal placement agency. We take as much time as you need for us to “know” your loved one that needs placement. Our placement experts are licensed Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly Administrators and know the rules and regulations that differentiate communities licensed by the California Department of Social Services versus those that are licensed by the We help families free of charge to find the appropriate senior community for their loved one. I used to say elderly loved one but we are seeing a trend now with helping people below 60 to find housing. Since our inception, we have charged communities (assisted living, memory care, retirement communities, and board and care homes) the same referral fee of 50% of the first month. That was the standard referral fee when we started and we have stuck to it. We want our partners (the places to where we refer) to be successful and we want them to have the financial means to care well for your loved one.

Our largest competitor charges larger facilities 88% of the first month. They also charge smaller board and care homes 120% of the monthly fee for a successful placement. So if you are paying $3,000 per month for your loved one to be in a board and care home, the home is paying the referral agency $1,800 of the first month, AND $1,800 of the second month to this large, nationwide referral agency. The board and care operator is only left with $1,200 per month, for two months to care for your loved one. Keep in mind that the board and care needs to pay caregivers, pay for their liability insurance, pay for utilities (electricity, water, waste, gas, etc., can be very costly as these homes run 24 hours per day), pay for FOOD, etc. Doing the math, it almost seems impossible for these owners to run their home well while only retaining 40% of the first two months for your loved one to be there.

There are MANY new referral agency franchises out there charging 100% of the first month. When I hear that someone is charging that much, I feel strongly that they do not know the true costs of running a care community. I help to run three board and care homes so I know first hand the costs associated with running a home well.

I say it daily that ANY referral agency charging 88-120% can be damaging to both the family using that high priced agency and to the facilities that are paying those fees. The family’s loved one may be in jeopardy of not receiving quality care or a quality environment since the community’s owner had to invest so much money to the high priced referral agency. The facility is hoping that the resident from that agency is in their community for a decent amount of time to recoup their investment. If for some reason the person is in the community for a short amount of time, the facility LOST money with that deal and may be in jeopardy of going out of business if they continue to accept clients from the higher priced agencies. The only person that seems to win in that circumstance would be the higher priced referral agency.

Southern California Senior Resources feels like we have some of the best communities in our database. MANY communities will not work with the higher priced agencies, but they are a proud partner to US, since we charge FAIR referral fees. You are in good hands with SoCal Seniors. Call us ANYTIME at 866-MY SENIOR (866-697-3646)

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