Carer FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions from Carers

What are live in carer duties?

Live-in care will usually include personal care, (toileting, washing, dressing and preparing the Client for the day), supervision of medication, helping with odd jobs around the house, cleaning, cooking and of course companionship. You may also be asked to take your client to the shops or help support getting them to and from medical or hospital appointments.

Nursing tasks such as wound care, injections, suppositories and the like are not usually services you would undertake; however a nursing professional may provide the training for some nurse-related tasks for a specific Client/Care Seeker.

Is live-in care only available for the elderly?

We provide live in care and/or support for both Young and Older Adults.

What experience do I need?

You will need to be over 18; and have had twelve months previous care experience, dependent upon the environment that you have worked in.  Helping a member of your own family is not usually regarded as sufficient experience.

What qualities do I need to become a live-in carer?

Most of our clients are vulnerable and many are confused or in poor health, so you must be capable of patience and good humour at all times. You will be a genuinely compassionate person; always dependable and with plenty of common sense.

You will need to be physically fit enough to assist your clients with bathing or to push them in their wheelchair.

You should be a reasonable cook and be able to prepare English meals.

You must be happy to do housework and laundry and to keep the home you are staying in clean and tidy.

Being able to understand, speak and write English to a high standard.  Good communication is essential.

Do I need to be a driver?

Some of our Care Seekers do not require a driver.  Some do want the live-in carer to drive on their behalf. It is important that if you accept a booking where you are expected to drive, you ensure that your driving licence is valid and that the client arranges the appropriate insurance cover for you.

How many hours will I be expected to work in a live-in care job?

As a live-in carer, you will probably work an average of eight to ten hour day, where you are in contact with the Care Seeker; but you’ll need to be on hand to help the client if needed when you are resting in your bedroom.

You are usually required to work seven days a week.

You should always arrange to have a two-hour break off the premises each day and you’re also never expected to work through the night as well as the day. Should a client need support throughout the night, then the Client or their family would be expected to make arrangements with us or a local care agency for these periods.

How much is a self-employed live-in carer paid?

If you work under our Introductory 24/7 Live in Care service you will work as self-employed and we can only recommend rates, as it is ultimately for you to agree these with the client. But we will help to negotiate these on your behalf with the client.  You will also need to negotiate any extra payment for Bank Holidays.

Being self-employed you are responsible for your own Income Tax and National Insurance contributions to HMRC.

We recommend that you work for at least three different clients in a care capacity each year in order to maintain your self-employed status.

On the day that you handover to another carer, at the end of or during a break in your contract with the Care Seeker, we recommend that you arrive in good time to ensure that an adequate handover takes place.  Handover is usually at Midday.  You will usually be paid for half the Daily pay Rate on the day of the Handover.

The carer will be paid the stated rate on their profile, minus 15% (incl. VAT), (Select Carers’ commission and Payment Provider admin charges), on an ongoing basis for the duration of the contract and any further contract with the client.

The payment needs to be made by the Client before the contract starts. This is held in the third party (escrow) Payment Provider account before being transferred to the carer at the end of the following week. Weekly recurring payments are then made for contracts longer than a week.

Even though the Payment Service makes the payments to you, you need to invoice the client or Care Seeker each week for the care you provide at the end of each working week.  The working week runs from Monday to Sunday.  The payment service will ensure that you have your payment in your bank on the Friday following the working week.  You will need to keep a copy of the invoices to show HMRC at the end of the tax year. 

As you are self employed you need to supply the equipment used by yourself.  This equipment would be for personal protection, such as gloves and aprons, and working clothes and shoes, etc.

You need to negotiate with a client your travel expenses prior to the assignment and invoice the client. If the client asks us we would recommend a maximum of £45 per journey to and from the assignment.

What is the process for being engaged by Live in Care at Home?

First:      Contact and Register with us.  Fill in the Registration Form & Skills and Experience Checklist; and send us a photo if you wish this to be seen by Care Seekers on your Profile.  We will arrange a face-to face interview, either on Skype, Facetime, or in one of our branch offices.

Second:  You need to agree to our Terms and Conditions. If accepted by our agency, you will be invited to also register on our Select Carers website, to enhance your opportunities for engagement with clients and so that we can easily notify you of job opportunities.

Third:    Your Profile will be sent to Clients/ Care-Seekers.

You will need to produce some of the following:

  1. Proof of identification & eligibility to work in the UK
  • Passport/s, EU identity card, or Biometric Residence and Work Permit
  • Proof of eligibility to work in the UK (e.g. visa for non EU passport holders)
  • Proof of address in the UK ( bank, credit card statement or utility bill less than 3 months old)
  • Birth certificate
  • National insurance number
  • Valid photographic driving license
  1. Details of your Skills & Experience
  • Your full CV with up-to-date working history
  • References and training certificates


What happens if I am unhappy with the assignment?

If there are difficulties with a booking or a clash of personalities between live-in carer and client, either party should contact Select Carers and a replacement live-in carer can be introduced as soon as possible.

Either party needs to give at least one week’s notice, unless the situation is critical or there is a safeguarding issue.  Live-in carers should never leave a booking until a replacement arrives and a proper handover has taken place.

In the highly unlikely event that a client asks a live-carer to leave their premises immediately you should do so but please call our office/on-call team immediately for advice. You should also contact the next of kin if your client is likely to be left alone.

Additional Training

It will help if you have a first aid and manual handling certificate from an established organisation, completed within the last 12 months, and evidence that you have trained regularly throughout your career.  If not, we will arrange this for you!

After your interview, in person or by Skype, we will be able to arrange on-line Care Certificate training if you require this; and after Registration, (and agreement to our Terms and Conditions), we will help you set up your profile to enable you to have regular work to fit around your lifestyle.

We have regular training updates every fortnight.  A timetable of courses is available on request.

Other important things

You should take out your own carer liability insurance.  This normally costs about £75 per year.  Most clients will require this.

To find out about registering as self-employed with HMRC you can visit this helpful site:

You can obtain a DBS through Sunshine People Nursing Agency;  by sending them appropriate ID through registered post.  Currently this costs just £60; and includes the cost of an Enhanced DBS with baring list check and their administration costs.  

Otherwise you will need to obtain an enhanced disclosure through joining another recruitment or care agency.

If you come from abroad it is useful to bring with you any previously issued police check from your own country.