24 Hour In-Home Care

for the ones you love

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is StartupHomeCare? Are you a franchise? Why do you charge less than a franchise - what's the catch?

A: No Catch. AHI Group is a Membership Organization with no franchise royalties and no territory restrictions. AHI Group, Inc (AHI) – StartupHomeCare’s parent company is an international network of 300+ home care agencies nationwide. AHI charges a one time fee and then makes its recurring revenue from optional programs that it offers to its home care agencies. If the program makes business sense to the home care agency they will use it and AHI makes recurring revenue accordingly. The larger the agency gets the more recurring revenue AHI gets via the programs the agency opts in to be part of. Therefore, AHI StartupHomeCare must ensure that it not only finds people who are the right fit but then appropriately trains and supports them ongoing to help ensure they succeed and provide a quality service to their community. AHI StartupHomeCare’s reputation and recurring revenue is at stake. In today’s world of internet technology – AHI StartupHomeCare knows all too well that doing a Google search on a company’s name will usually bring to light the problems a company has had with its customers. We encourage people to do a Google search on “AHI Group, Inc” to verify we don’t have a laundry list of complaints from our member agencies. On a side note – unfortunately in 2013 the State of California (which has very specific and uniquely restrictive franchise rules) did not like that AHI Group classified itself as a “Membership Organization” and said it was confusingly similar to that of a “Franchise” and wanted AHI Group to become a franchise or stop mentioning the term “Member”. Naturally, neither AHI nor it’s member agencies wanted to become a franchise as that is not the model AHI wants to promote so AHI stopped offering “Memberships” in California and now offers Consulting Services which consist of complete training, development, and a support organization designed for your success in California. AHI fully complies with the State of California’s “Franchise/Membership cease and desist” request. We encourage anyone who wants to verify AHI Group compliance in California to contact the State of California’s Franchising Oversight Department. Please contact us to discuss our specialized Consulting Services Training, Development, and Support Organization designed for your success – for California, Louisiana, and Rhode Island residents! AHI Group is dedicated to assisting qualified individuals start and grow their own business providing non-medical home care to families in their local communities. We provide an affordable alternative to purchasing a franchise and charge no ongoing royalties and have no restricted territories. Our fee is currently $20,000. We often get asked why we charge so little for everything that our clients get and our response is that we don’t have to charge more to help grow our members – so we don’t. It’s as simple as that. AHI gets recurring revenue from optional revenue driving programs that it offers to its members. Members can choose to participate or simply decline. Those that decline will pay no more fees to AHI and will continue to get the full day-to-day support they are entitled at no extra cost. Some thing note worthy to keep in mind is that one thing a franchise will rarely disclose is how much they pay their sales team or “independent franchise brokers” to bring them customers. On average, a franchise will pay at least $20,000 to an “independent franchise broker” for every franchise they help sell. StartupHomeCare does work with independent franchise brokers but our commission is a fraction of what a franchise pays out because we only charge $20,000 for our whole package and therefore cannot pay out a large broker commission. Our internal sales team bring 95% of our new clients to our organization. Saving on overhead costs helps StartupHomeCare keep its total upfront pricing down which, of course, benefits our members. Lastly, a franchise may tell you that you will always need their constant hand holding and support as you go out and grow your business. However, what you will find if you actually talk to one of their franchisees is that after the first year they rarely call their corporate franchise asking for help because they have already encountered 95% of the situations they will encounter and therefore already know how to handle them and don’t need someone to tell them what to do again. In our minds, if one of our members is calling us a lot after the first year then that would mean that we have failed on our end to effectively train and develop them. This has not happened with any of our agency members to this point but if it ever did we would need to drill down to their core and find out what it is exactly they are not understanding to help them fix it.

Q: What do Companions and Aides (caregivers) do?

A: Aides and Companions assist seniors and others with activities of daily living (ADLs), which includes things like grooming, bathing, dressing, toileting, transferring, etc. They also assist clients with medication reminders, meal preparation, transportation, light housekeeping, and other similar non-medical activities that a client needs assistance with day to day. Caregivers provide service where people prefer them – in the comfort of their home or chosen place of residence.

Q: Is private duty (non medical) home care covered by insurance providers?

A: There are Medical Insurance, Workers Compensation Insurance, and Long Term Care Insurance companies that do cover in home personal care services. We have a Corporate Long Term Care Insurance contract with the largest provider of long term care insurance, and also work with numerous Medical and Workers Compensation Insurance companies to provide aide services to their policy holders who are sick or got injured at work. Medicare does not provide coverage but starting January 2019 Medicaid Advantage Plans (1/3 of seniors have these) will start providing funding for non medical aide services which is a huge development in the industry. Medicaid can provide coverage in some states and this is expanding with the changes in ‘ObamaCare’ so there will be more room for potential home care clients in the Medicaid arena. Having access to both Insurance based and Government paid clients help our AHI Members balance their portfolio of clients between private pay and insurance/government pay to give them a broader reach and larger potential client base in difficult economic times. Also, the Veterans Administration can provide coverage for qualifying veterans and their surviving spouses. Our AHI Veteran Program can help you assist Veterans and their surviving spouses (1 in 3 seniors) who qualify get funds that can be used to pay for up to 25hrs of home care per week – paid for by the Veterans Administration without often requiring them to spend a penny out of their pockets to get the care. Our VA Program is all in house (no other home care organization in the nation has this) and allows us to provide financing to our member agency’s clients who don’t have the funds to pay for care while their application is in process with the VA. Your clients will love that they can get funds which can be used to pay for up to 25 hours of care per week – and often without paying a penny out of their pocket to get started – and you will love serving our honorable Veterans and their surviving spouses. The margins in the VA Program are the same as Private Pay and Long Term Care Insurance which allow an agency to get an average of $6,400 per year in net profit for each part-time client they are providing care for. Ninety part-time clients equals over $575,000 in owners take home income per year. Lastly, AHI provides access to Healthcare Insurance Programs – to get you more clients. Some Home Care Consultants/Franchises May Claim To Have A “VA Program” but when you ask for the details you will find they are referring to a finance company who loans money to home care agency clients and charges the agency 25-30% of their invoice and pays Net 60 days. Evidence of this can be found in a national home care franchisees VA Brochure (see bottom right of the brochure) click here. They state in their brochure that VA Aid & Attendance benefit clients get a maximum of 60, 50, 30 hours of care per month for each care scenario (Couple, Single Veteran, or Surviving Spouse – respectively). They are basically increasing their hourly rate so they have more net profit per hour – but that means they must provide less hours of care per month as the VA pays fixed lump sums per month depending on if it is a couple, single Veteran, or surviving spouse. Our AHI agencies can provide (on average) around 86, 73, 47 hours of home care per month for each scenario. Which home care agency do you think a client is going to choose if both inform them of the VA benefit? OR the non AHI Home Care Agency is referring to the “VA Homemaker Program” that is run by VA Hospitals and highly competitive to get access to – if they are accepting new Home Care Agencies at all. We train people how to market to the VA Hospital Homemaker Program business too but we also provide the VA Aid & Attendance Pension Benefit Program to allow our agencies to work with clients who make up 1 in 3 seniors and do it without paying 25-30% of their gross invoice which equates to $5-7/hr of their net profit. Innovative thinking and unique programs set us apart from our competition at all levels. Several Home Care Franchises have tried and failed to create a similar VA Aid & Attendance Benefit Loan Program over the years and some people ask why ours is the only one left standing? The answer simply is the people on our VA Team. There are literally only a handful of people across the nation who have the vast knowledge and experience required to process VA benefit applications to the competency level required for a home care organization to loan out their own money to their agency’s customers. We have that level of competency and experience on our VA team and are therefore able to loan funds to our agency’s clients in order for them to get approved for the VA benefit without them spending a penny out of their pockets to get the care started and get approved for the benefit. Contact our team to find out more about our VA Program and how you can find the millions of Veterans and their surviving spouses who may qualify across the nation.

Q: How much does it cost to start a home care business? Can I start it in a home office?

A: A home care business requires minimal start up costs and can technically be run from your own home. However, we can also show you some great rates on flexible short or long term office space leasing options located in over 950 cities throughout the US with rates starting as low as $200 per month, furnished, including utilities and a shared receptionist – to give your agency a professional feel and assist you when performing potential employee interviews.

Q: Do I need a healthcare industry background to start a private duty (non medical) home care business?

A: No, it is not required. Our ten day intensive AHI Boot Camp Training Program (5 days in our Corporate Office and 5 days remote from your home) assumes that you know nothing about the home care industry and starts from the ground with training you into a professional home care administrator/marketer. Our AHI StartupHomeCare Member Support Team (consisting of ONLY individuals who have started their own home care agency and grown it to a multi-million dollar home care business) then guide you along the path to launching and growing your business day to day.

Q: Do caregivers I hire need licenses or certifications to provide care services and do you provide access to a low cost Certified Senior Care Aide (CSCA) and Certified Home Health Aide (CHHA) Training Programs so I can attract and retain Caregivers?

A: That will depend upon the type of company you start and the levels of service you provide. If it is a Companion Care Agency, then your employees will not need to be Certified as Senior Care Aides (CSCA), Certified Home Health Aides (CHHA), Certified Nurse Assistants (CNA). If it is a ‘Personal Care’ Agency, then your state MAY require that they be certified as a CNA. We provide you with an unlimited lifetime online access to a training portal with 50+ caregiver training videos that cover the full spectrum of non-medical home care provider training and industry best practices. Your caregivers will be able to create their own login UserID and Password and get access to this site. They will be able to watch any of the 50+ videos and be required to take a quiz after each video and then be able to download and print a certificate of completion for each training video which they can show as evidence to you – their agency administrator – that they have completed the courses you asked them to complete. Through our relationship with the Association of Care Services at Home (ACSAH) your caregivers will also be able to get Certified as Senior Care Aides and Certified Home Health Aides for only $120/$250 instead of $700 – $2,000 which is what they would pay if they went to a similar training academy. This is a great incentive for your potential employees to come on board with your agency – allowing you to attract quality caregivers and retain them. We are the only home care organization in the nation that offers a CSCA and CHHA training program with a cost of only a $120/$250. In addition, if all your caregivers are certified (along with some other requirements) your agency will be able to qualify for the “Excellence In Home Care – Trusted Provider” designation which will help you stand out in your local community. Lastly, keep in mind that 89% of polled caregivers in the industry say they will switch jobs for $1 – $2 more per hour. This is great news for non franchise home care agencies as they have 1/3 more net profit (that they are not giving to a franchise) that they can use to pay their caregivers more money and therefore attract more of them. Many franchises talk about the “caregiver shortage” but our AHI Group agencies don’t have that same concern as they are able to pay their caregivers better than all the franchises out there and still maintain affordable pricing for their clients.

Q: Do I need a license to operate a private duty (non medical) home care agency?

A: 28 states require non medical home care agencies to get licensed before opening their doors for business. AHI will assist you with this process and will fill out your state’s application form and put it in the mail to the licensing board for you. You will be responsible for any filing fee’s (usually around $500 depending on the state). It usually takes 3 months to get a license. The most costly and time consuming states are Florida, Texas, New York, and Georgia. If you live in one of those four states you will need to budget around $3,000 for your licensing and 3-5 months to get through the process. New York has a year long waiting list – right now – for a home health agency license which is required to provide personal care services in that state. However, one can start by providing “Companion Care” only in the state of NY without a license. You will need to create your legal entity (S-Corp or LLC – we will assist you) before applying for your license. An S-Corp or LLC usually takes 4-6 weeks to create in most states. You must receive your “Articles of Incorporation” from your state before your legal entity is officially completed and approved. This means that you will want to put down your deposit with AHI StartupHomeCare 3-4 months before you plan on opening your doors for business to get these tasks completed so you are not waiting on them after you complete your Boot Camp. If your state does not require home care agency licensing you will only need 1-2 months to get your legal entity setup. However, we recommend you pay your deposit at least 2 months before you want to attend a Boot Camp to ensure you get a seat because we limit the size of our Boot Camps to 10 parties to ensure lots of one-on-one attention.

Q: What type of people do I hire to be caregivers?

A: Certified Nurse Assistants (CNA’s) and Certified Senior Care Aides (CSCA’s) are well trained to be private duty (non medical) caregivers. There are also many individuals out there who don’t have these certifications but have a lot of experience working with the elderly or those with disabilities. We will train you how to recruit, screen, and hire the quality caregivers in your local market place so that you will have good people representing your agency. Also, keep in mind that 89% of polled caregivers in the industry say they will switch jobs for $1 – $2 more per hour. This is great news for non franchise home care agencies as they have 1/3 more net profit (that they are not giving to a franchise) that they can use to pay their caregivers more money and therefore attract more of them. Many franchises talk about the “caregiver shortage” but our AHI Group agencies don’t have that same concern as they are able to pay their caregivers better than all the franchises out there and still maintain affordable pricing for their clients.

Q: Why ten days of AHI Group Boot Camp Training?

A: We provide ten days of training. You are required to complete five full days of video and self directed training with a manual which you can complete at home at your own pace. We then provide five intense in office days of AHI Boot Camp Training in which we will train you and provide you with all the tools you need to start and successfully grow your home care business. Our tools, documentation, and training program will prepare you for almost anything you are likely to encounter. You can bring one additional person to training for no extra cost. Plus, we are available to assist you and promptly answer any of your questions via phone or email after your AHI Boot Camp training so you don’t need to worry about learning everything in ten days! At AHI StartupHomeCare, you will be trained and provided support by highly accomplished Private Duty (Non Medical) industry professionals who have been in the trenches of actually owning a home care agency and know the detailed in’s and out’s of how to market and grow that business day to day. NOTE: Five days of training is provided in one of our offices and the other five days you will do at your home via DVD and study materials.

Q: Will I be able to use the name "AHI Group"? Will I get to display the "AHI Member " icon on my web site?

A: No. We will assist you with picking out your own agency name and offer guidance on the Trademark process. You will be able to display the “AHI Member” icon on your website so people can see you are part of our national membership organization.

Q: Will I get a territory and do you protect it? Will my web site be the same as other AHI StartupHomeCare client web sites?

A: The territory you have will be the area you choose to service – large or small. We are not a franchise, and we do not pigeon hole you into a specific territory. If you feel you would like to grow your business into another geographic region, you do not need our permission, unlike a franchiser who will either sell you another territory, or tell you no outright. Also keep in mind that a franchiser cannot protect the territory they sell you from all the other franchisees or independent business owners in the market from starting home care agencies in your area. Competition will be constantly starting up in the territory you would buy from a franchise whether you like it or not. Having a territory restriction is the single most limiting factor for any business. What if the territory you buy turns out to not be that great of a territory or that is a lot of competition in that area that you may struggle for a long time to break through? What if start getting referrals from a hospital or skilled nursing facility and they have sister facilities in locations outside of your territory? This could mean literally millions of dollars in lost revenue over time. A: Yes, your web site will be the same as our other AHI member’s web sites. The only difference is that your web site will also have your specific company name on it.

Q: What type of support does AHI StartupHomeCare offer after we launch our agency?

A: We offer comprehensive and prompt day to day support to each and every one of our member agencies – via members of our team who have personally owned and grown their own multi-million dollar non medical home care business. We guarantee that we will never give you a coach who has no experience owning their own successful home care business. We are open from 7am to 4:30pm Pacific Time Monday through Friday and available via our phone hotline and email over weekends and Holidays. The fee for this ongoing support is built into our pricing and the recurring revenue we receive from our optional programs each agency gets to opt-in to use. See “Our Support” page for more details on the level of support we provide to our members. Ask us to send you a 5 minute snippet from a weekly AHI Support Call that involved an AHI Member Agency owner who has been in business for 1.5 years as a “guest speaker” to discuss their strategies for maintaining good caregivers and getting new business referrals. Also, ask us to send you another 5 minute snippet from another weekly AHI Support Call where the AHI Coach is discussing techniques for building relationships with referral sources and asking for referrals. All weekly calls are recorded and there are over 100 support calls in the archive that AHI Members can listen to anytime – to help them constantly sharpen their saw.

Q: How much competition is in this business already?

A: According to the federal government and the last census, Eldercare needs are going to continue to explode well past 2040. While there is competition in every business, the overwhelming demand for good quality, ethical, home care services will be around for some time to come. In addition, our proprietary and cutting edge marketing techniques will get you in doors that have been closed to other companies allowing your agency to expand and grow.

Q: A Franchiser told me I would receive leads from their web site - how will I get leads with your option?

A: On average, web sites provide about 15-20% of a home care agencies qualified leads. AHI StartupHomeCare will create your web site and then perform ‘natural’ Search Engine Optimization (SEO) services on it so that it will start to appear on a common search engine like Google with no ‘pay per click’ type fees on-going. In addition, we will teach you how to use social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) to spread your message of senior care services across your community and build you online presence and ranking on search engines like Google. Keep in mind that when people find you online they don’t know you from Adam (to coin a term) and are therefore much more skittish with choosing you over the other agencies they found online. These types of potential clients are much harder to ‘close’ than you getting a referral from a discharge planner at a healthcare facility that you have been marketing your services to. The family typically trusts the discharge planner as they are a healthcare professional and will therefore be more inclined to choose your agency over all the others out there online. Many home care organizations focus most of their attention on back office processes: software, website, caregiver training videos, and travel discounts, etc. These, however, will not get an agency a lot of clients. AHI Group’s edge is in providing pipelines of business for its member agencies. These pipelines consist of both private pay, insurance, and publicly funded sources. Our national health, workers compensation, and long term care insurance contracts bring a volume of clients to our member agency’s doors – who need in home care services and have it paid for via their insurance. Having a shinny office space, great software, website, and caregiver training programs is great – but that will not generate volumes of clients. Without a steady flow of clients a business will die in its first year – no matter how slick its software or caregiver training programs are. In addition, AHI StartupHomeCare partners with two national senior care web sites that provide families a place to find quality home care agencies and for a small fee ($17 per lead) provide leads to qualified home care agencies. Families often prefer to go to a ‘neutral’ senior care web site and have 2-3 companies recommended by the web site – instead of going online and trying to find a quality company on their own. These online leads can get you clients quickly while you implement our proprietary marketing plan and techniques we train you on during your Boot Camp Training – so you start getting a consistent flow of referrals from healthcare professionals in your community. In addition, AHI’s optional programs allow its participating members to share referrals across the nation.

Q: A franchiser told me that they allow their franchisees to communicate and learn from each other - do you allow that with your customers?

A: Our member agencies are always free to communicate with each other after completing our Boot Camp training – and we encourage this. This is one of the major advantages of being part of a large organization – you get to be on weekly calls and rub shoulders with home care agency owners who have been in business for months/years and hear first hand from them how they are dealing with challenges, what works and doesn’t work for them, etc. It is “empowering, motivational, informative” are some of the words our new members use to describe these weekly calls they get on with other AHI member agencies. There are 300+ home care agencies across the nation that we have launched and grown from the ground up. You will also find that the Boot Camp training is very comprehensive and contains the tools you will need to successfully grow your new agency.

Q: A franchiser told me they have software for time keeping, employee logging in/out, accounting, etc. that saves the administrator time and money. Do you have this type of thing?

A: Yes, we have a state-of-the-art back office cloud enabled HR, scheduling, billing, CRM, telephony, etc. software tool that our clients can use. In addition, we provide information on a number of industry standard tools and software that can help your agency run efficiently. You then get to decide which product you would like to purchase according to price, functionality, ease of use, etc. The AHI Member agency cost is $10 per month per client up to 95 clients and then it caps at $950 per month for additional unlimited clients. This is a state-of-the-art cloud based software system to run your entire agency from your iphone, ipad, computer: referral tracking, caregiver HR, client scheduling, client profile, caregiver time tracking via GPS on smart phone app, family portal (so family can login and see what has been going on in the home each day), send texts to all caregivers regarding new jobs with one click, and much more! Save countless hours and reduce the need for a lot of office staff. etc. products.

Q: A franchise wants to charge me $37,000 for a small territory and then pay 5% of my gross sales in royalties. I asked why they charge so much and was told that, quote, "You get what you pay for. If you want quality you have to pay for it." How does your company charge so much less and still provide a quality program and ongoing support? What's the catch?

A: No catch. First of all, there is a reason there are a lot of franchises in existence – they are making a lot of money – which they take from their franchisees. Second, AHI StartupHomeCare does not spend massive amounts of money on advertising our solution to potential buyers. Every magazine you pick up that has anything to do with franchises these days seems to have the same home care franchise listings. Third, Franchisers like to throw expensive ongoing events for their current franchisees who also need to spend money to attend such events that could be accomplished via conference calls and online methods at much lower costs. All of this, and many other expenses, add up to a much larger overhead that a franchiser needs to cover in order to stay in business. Spending hard earned money you make them on advertising to their potential franchisees instead of turning it back into their business to help provide support and improved training programs for its current franchisees is part of what franchises have to do in order to stay in business and attract new franchisees. Fourth, Franchises pay large commissions to franchise brokers who bring them new franchisees. On average, a franchise will pay over $20,000 to a broker who brings them a franchisee. StartupHomeCare does work with franchise brokers but our fee is a fraction of the amount a franchise pays out. Lastly, AHI StartupHomeCare spends very little on marketing to the public and relies heavily on free organic google searches to attract its customers and attendance at a few franchise/business opportunity events around the nation. This allows us to keep our overhead low and in turn keep the total cost of our solution much lower but still provide outstanding quality.

Q: What exactly am I getting for my money?

A: To name some of the things you will receive: extensive 10 days of training (5 days at home with DVD’s and the other five days in our office), Employee Manuals, Policies and Procedures Manual, company forms and letters, employee forms and tests, cutting edge and innovative marketing program training, hiring aids/companions, ongoing coaching and support after launching, access to AHI programs that bring clients to AHI Members doors without requiring the AHI Member to do anything to get those clients who’s care is paid for via insurance, training in four “snap on” senior care businesses (one of them is Assisted Living Placements), and much more.  In short, everything needed to own and operate a successful home care business and beat out the competition. Please see Our Services page for a more detailed list of the main things you get as a member of AHI StartupHomeCare. Some other things to consider: You would probably spend $3,000 – $5,000 to get a quality web site, brochures, business cards, etc. created and printed – and you would need to create all the content yourself which usually takes many hours of time and excellent writing skills. You would need to purchase policies/procedures and legal documents that have stood the test of time – not just online purchased documents that may not hold their water in a court situation – but documents created by business contract attorney’s that charge on average $300/hr. Cost for this is anywhere from $5,000 – $20,000 depending on the level of involvement the attorney’s have. Also, the eight days of training on everything you need to know to market, operate, grow your agency, and avoid legal liability is taught by people who have already gone before you and grown their own company into a highly successful agency. You get assistance creating your legal entity (LLC, S-Corp), discounted insurance, low cost office space, and valuable information that will most likely save you thousands of dollars over the life of your business – in addition to steering you away from potentially losing thousands of dollars and many wasted people hours in failed marketing campaigns. You get ongoing support to guide you step by step after you launch your business. We also complete your state home care agency license application form (if you live in a state that requires licensing) and send it in the mail to the licensing board for you. Lastly, one should consider how many other organizations out there have leadership on board who started their own home care agency in a highly competitive market like Southern California (with 200 existing home care agencies) in January 2007 at the beginning of the longest recession in 50 years and achieved $1.5 million in revenue ($20,000 a month net profit) in their second year. Starting a home care agency in this struggling economic era and ever changing ObamaCare regulatory environment means that the ‘old way’ of marketing and running a home care agency is not going to give most new agencies the edge they need in today’s changed healthcare market place. The founders and their team of experienced home care professionals (with a combined 38 yrs of experience in owning very successful home care agencies during the last decade) are now teaching others how to achieve growth when starting a home care agency in a recession – but without the restrictions and cost of a franchise. Our AHI Group, Inc – StartupHomeCare leadership team have actually owned home care agencies and successfully grown them into multi million dollar agencies – they have not just worked as consultants or been employees of home care agencies before starting their own home care membership organization. As those of you know who have owned businesses before, there is a major difference between being an owner of a business and being an employee/manager. Only those on our AHI Group – StartupHomeCare team who have owned a successful home care agency are allowed to help train our new agencies. This ensures our member agencies get the highest quality training and support in the industry and have the ability to beat out their local competition.

Q: How much does the AHI Group Membership cost?

A: Our AHI Group Membership costs $20,000 and no additional member fees or royalties thereafter. Clients get comprehensive daily support to help them grow their business day to day. The fee for this support is built into our initial pricing and optional ongoing programs so you do not pay any additional amounts for ongoing lifetime support. We also recommend that you have access to an additional $10,000 – $15,000 for initial startup costs for such things as professional liability insurance down payments, office space deposit, laptop computer, printer, etc. and enough funds to pay your monthly expenses until you get your first client(s) that cover your expenses – which should be within your first or second month. Financing is available. Like a franchise, we understand that an initial fee (ours is $20,000) is only going to go so far with our member agencies and that fee is usually all used up before our members even open their doors for business due to all the things we do for them. So, like a franchise, we need ongoing revenue in order for us to stay in business. We have optional programs that our members can opt in to use if they see value in them. So, we are similar to a franchise in that we rely on the ongoing revenue we receive from our members. But we are unlike a franchise in that we have “optional” programs and those who don’t want to participate don’t have to and they still get all the same support as everyone else. All the other revenue our members make is without any fees from us – so all that money goes into their pocket. That’s where our members save a lot of money in the long term. Also, AHI Group still gets the recurring revenue it needs from the optional programs to keep the whole organization moving and growing. Its a win-win.

Q: Why should I choose AHI Group Membership Organization?

A: The most comprehensive, in-depth, quality, home care membership organization on the market today at a price that won’t break your new business budget. You will be taught by people that successfully made their living from Eldercare every day and have a track record to prove it! In addition, the founders of AHI StartupHomeCare launched their own agency in January 2007 at the beginning of a large global recession in a market with over 200 other existing home care agencies (southern California). Despite the recession and the competition, the founders were able to successfully grow their new agency into a million dollar company within 18 months. The founders are now sharing the secrets of their success to help others achieve the same revenue in a recessive economy and provide quality care to their local senior community. Note: StartupHomeCare is the business development & training arm of AHI Group, Inc. AHI Group, Inc is a nationwide membership organization of independently owned home care agencies with an emphasis on providing personal care services to the elderly in their homes. Many home care organizations focus most of their attention on back office processes: software, website, caregiver training videos, and travel discounts, etc. These, however, will not get an agency many clients. AHI Group’s edge is in providing pipelines of business for its member agencies. These pipelines consist of both private pay, insurance, and publicly funded sources. Having a shinny office space, great software, website, and caregiver training programs is great – but that will not generate volumes of clients. Without a steady flow of clients a business will die in its first year – no matter how slick its software or caregiver training programs are.

Q: Are payment arrangements an option? Are you accredited by the BBB?

A: A non-refundable down payment of $10,000 is due before your training can be booked and pre-course tasks started. The remaining balance of $10,000 is due two calendar weeks before the first day of your training. We accept checks, VISA, Discover, MasterCard, and American Express. We are not accredited by the BBB. Unfortunately the Orange County, California BBB no longer accredits organizations classified as “Business Opportunities” as of 2015. This is an Orange County BBB rule and not necessarily the case among other BBB franchises elsewhere in the nation. Prior to this change we had an “A+” rating with the BBB and that rating still stands today. With that being said, we understand that you may want to do some research on any complaints against our company so we recommend you do an online search which can usually find much more about an organization than most BBB franchises are aware of. We recommend that you do a search for “AHI Group, Inc Complaints” online. You will find there is not a laundry list of complaints out there as our Members are very happy with the services we provide to them. In fact, we have dozens of FIVE STAR reviews on our Google+ Page disclosing what our members think about our organization. Google+ Reviews are much more reliable than BBB Reviews as Google algorithms and Google’s Review Team do a great job of sniffing out fake reviews vs. the BBB which only sends an email to the person who performed the review and just requires they click on a link to become a “Verified BBB Review.”

Q: A franchise told me that they are "Joint Commission Accredited" and that only 10% of other non medical home care agencies out there have this accreditation and that I will win more business due to having this accreditation. Is this something I should get for my agency to help me win business?

A: The Joint Commission Accreditation costs around $7,500 to get for each individual agency who wishes to get that certification. The fees are typically split over a three year period of time (approximately $2,500 per year). The process is involved but not difficult to get the accreditation. Like getting a state home care agency license in some states – there are hoops to jump through but it is a process and one just has to go through that process to get the accreditation at the end. If one of our member agencies would like to get this accreditation they are welcome to do that and we assist them with that process. However, there is no requirement in the non medical home care industry to have this accreditation as it is directed specifically towards healthcare entities that offer Skilled Care Services (Nursing care, etc.). As per the President of the National Association of Home Care & Hospice recent remarks at the 2012 National Conference in Orlando, FL, “…the exponential growth of the home care industry over the next 30 yrs is NOT going to be in the skilled care services – it WILL be in the non skilled home care services.” Therefore, unless one has inexhaustible budgets and time we do not recommend spending your time and money on getting a Joint Commission Accreditation as your agency will not need it – if you are going to follow the path of exponential growth in the non medical side of the home care care industry. People who provide referrals will not expect you to have the accreditation when you are providing assistance with non medical private duty activities of daily living – and not inclined to choose agencies who do have the accreditation above others who do not – as it is an accreditation directed towards skilled care with home health, hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, etc. However, as previously stated, if our client agencies want to spend the money and get this accreditation they can do so and we will assist them in the process.

Q: What is special about your organization? What sets you apart from others doing what you do?

AHI Group was founded by senior care professionals who started and grew their own non-medical home care business from the ground up to a multi-million dollar business. AHI Group has been creating and growing non-medical home care agencies since April of 2007. In that time we have successfully helped over three hundred individuals/groups build and grow their own successful non-medical home care business. We have a proven track record and business model that works.  Yes, there are other options out there, but if you compare what we offer (in detail) to what they do and add our track record of success to the equation you will find that we are a safe bet in a world of potentially risky new business ventures in the senior care industry. AHI is constantly evolving its marketing techniques to stay ahead of the competition. All in all, AHI Group is an ethical organization from top to bottom. AHI Group consistently out performs its competition in local market places across the nation. Given the knowledge and seasoned industry expertise that its founders and key executives have through their experience in the healthcare industry as a whole and also in the senior care market place. This broad knowledge of healthcare industry experience allows AHI to read between the lines of new legislation affecting the senior care industry, analyze where the greatest opportunities will lie ongoing, and plug into numerous industry feeds that – when combined – give AHI a clear gauge on where to focus its efforts each year to drive the most revenue for its members. AHI is constantly evolving its programs to seek out new opportunities for revenue growth that are untapped or underutilized. For example, AHI recently rolled out access to national corporate contracts it established with healthcare insurance companies. These national insurance contracts can refer clients to AHI Members who need home care services and have it paid for via insurance. This is how AHI agencies stand out from their competition and have the ability to grow so quickly. Innovation is what put AHI Group on the map and has allowed them to be the fastest growing Home Care Organization in the nation. That innovation is a continuous and evolving process. Those who rely on copying AHI innovations will always be “behind the 8 ball” so to speak and never on the leading edge – unlike our AHI members who get to splash everything that is new in their local communities and be the first to market. Last but not least, at AHI, we stand by our service and organization and are willing to refund anyone’s full investment in us if they attend our Boot Camp Training and are not 100% satisfied with what they learn there – and instead decide to purchase a franchise within 30 days thereafter.

Q: What are the "Veterans Program" and "Corporate Insurance Program" I heard your organization provides?

A: AHI Group has multiple optional programs that drive revenue to its home care agencies and also to AHI Group. Such programs are the VA Program, Health Insurance Program, Workers Compensation Insurance Program, Medicaid Waiver Program, and Medical Device Program. Focus on Veterans: Our AHI Veterans Pension Benefit Program can help you assist Veterans and their surviving spouses (1 in 3 seniors) get up to 25 hrs of home care per week paid for by the Veterans Administration without requiring them to spend a penny out of their pockets to get the care. It is estimated that 15 million seniors could now qualify for this VA Pension Benefit and only 500,000 currently have it. Our VA Pension Benefit Program is all in house (no other home care organization in the nation has this) and allows us to provide financing to our member agency’s clients who don’t have the funds to pay for care while their application is in process with the VA. Your clients will love that they can get funds which can be used to pay for up to 25 hours of care per week – and often without paying a penny out of their pocket to get started – and you will love serving our honorable Veterans and their surviving spouses. The margins in the Veterans Pension Program are the same as Private Pay and Long Term Care Insurance which allow an agency to get a fair market rate for the care provided. This equates to an average of $6,400 per year in net profit for each part-time client our agencies are providing care for in our VA Pension Benefit Program. Ninety part-time clients equals over $575,000 in owners take home income per year. Lastly, AHI provides access to Healthcare Insurance Programs – to get you more clients. Some Home Care Consultants/Franchises May Claim To Have A “VA Program” but when you ask for the details you will find they are referring to a completely different VA Program named the “VA Healthcare Homebound Program” that is managed by VA Hospitals and highly competitive to get access to. Many home care agencies fill out the one page form to “get on the list” but then the real challenge of actually getting referrals begins – as the VA is not just going to start calling you because you added your agency name to their list which already has another 50+ agencies listed. The key is to market to the case managers at the VA hospitals and clinics as they are the ones giving out the referrals for this program. The problem is that when you go to these case managers at the VA, they will likely say, “We already work with 4 home care agencies that we are happy with, please come back in 3 years when we have open enrollment again. Goodbye!” That is what happens 90% of the time when trying to get access to this VA Homebound Program. At AHI Group, we train people how to go after this VA Healthcare Homebound Program but we give them a leg up when doing so. The leg up is tied to another VA Program that AHI Group has in house named the “VA Aid & Attendance Pension Benefit” (VA A&A Pension Benefit) which helps Veterans AND their spouses (over age 65) get up to $2,169 per month to pay for aide services. The VA A&A Benefit is a completely different program to the VA Healthcare Home Bound program – the two are not related at all. AHI Group is the ONLY home care organization in the nation that offers the VA A&A Pension Benefit to its home care agency’s clients. This allows our agencies a huge leg up when they go out to their communities as 15 million seniors could qualify for this pension benefit today ($2,169 a month/80 hours of care) and only 3% of them actually have it. The VA A&A Benefit is also much easier to market and find clients as our agencies can market DIRECTLY to 15 million Veterans and their spouses instead of having to wait for a referral from a VA Hospital Case Manager – which 90% of the time never occurs because the VA Case Managers already work with existing home care agencies they are happy with. However, our AHI Group agencies also have a leg up when it comes to getting referrals from the VA Hospitals as our agencies tell them, “Hey, I know you are going to give most of your patients about 5-10 hours of care per week, as you have budget restraints. Are there any of your patients who could use 20-30 hours of care per week? If so, send them my way as I can likely get them another 20 hours of care per week through a VA Pension Benefit that I’m aware of!” Case Managers at VA hospitals will be happy to send you their patients as they want them to get more hours of care as that means better care outcomes for their patients and better results on their care outcome reports! Do you think the VA Case Manager will want to work with the agency who can get their patients more hours of care for free or the agency who cannot? END RESULT: Our AHI Group agencies can go out to their communities and market directly to elderly Veterans and their spouses to help them get a VA Pension Benefit that can get them 80 hours of care per month. In addition, our agencies can set themselves apart from their competition when going to the VA Hospitals by letting the case managers know that they can assist the patients get more hours of care for free – on top of what the VA can afford to provide them via the VA Homebound Program. Innovative thinking and unique programs set AHI Group apart from our competition at all levels. As a point of reference, a number of Home Care Franchises have tried and failed to create a similar VA Aid & A Pension Benefit Program over the years and some people ask why ours is the only one left standing? The answer simply is the people on our VA Accredited Agent Team. There are literally only a handful of VA Accredited people across the nation who have the vast knowledge and experience required to process VA Pension Benefit Applications to the competency level required for a home care organization to loan out their own money to their agency’s customers. We have that level of competency and experience on our VA Accredited team and are therefore are able to loan funds to our agency’s clients in order for them to get approved for the VA Pension Benefit without them spending a penny out of their pockets to get the care started and get approved for the benefit. Contact our team to find out more about our VA Pension Benefit Program and how you can connect with the millions of Veterans and their surviving spouses who may qualify across the nation! AHI Group Members Beat Their Competition With The VA Aid & Attendance Pension Benefit. There is also a home care finance type company out there who loans money to any home care agency’s clients and charges the agency 25-30% of their invoice and pays the agency Net 60 days. Any home care organization claiming to have a “VA Pension Benefit Loan Program” to assist low income Veterans is using this 3rd party company – guaranteed. Evidence of this can be found in a national home care franchisees VA Brochure (see bottom right of the brochure) click here. They state in their brochure that VA Aid & Attendance Pension Benefit clients get a maximum of 60, 50, 30 hours of care per month for each care scenario (Couple, Single Veteran, or Surviving Spouse – respectively). They are basically increasing their hourly rate so they have more net profit per hour – but that means they must provide less hours of care per month as the VA pays fixed lump sums per month depending on if it is a couple, single Veteran, or surviving spouse. Our AHI agencies can provide (on average) around 86, 73, 47 hours of care per month for each scenario. Which home care agency do you think a client is going to choose if both approach them and explain there is a VA benefit that can be used to pay for home care services? In addition, the 3rd party company takes $6-7 per hour of the net profit from the home care agency which leaves the agency little to work with (usually around $2-3 per hour net profit). Our AHI Members enjoy a profit margin of $7-$10 per hour on average in our VA Pension Benefit Program.

Q: What type of Business License do we need? Are there any states you don't offer AHI Memberships?

A: Business license requirements vary state to state. We can assist you with determining and meeting the requirements for your state. We do not currently offer AHI Memberships to people in the following states: Louisiana, California, and Rhode Island. Please contact us for information on our AHI Consulting Services in these states.

Q: How do I obtain my employees and clients?

A:  In training you will be given all the information and necessary skills to hire qualified employees and successfully market your agency to get clients. Our AHI Members are able to offer their employees ACSAH Certified Home Health Aide® certifications at 75% off the retail price of getting such – allowing our agencies to attract more caregivers. Also, our AHI Members don’t have a royalty payment on all the money they bring in so they can pay their caregivers in the top 20% of going rates and attract the cream of the crop caregivers who will make their agency look good and provide a Gold Standard of Care. In addition to a client private paying out of their pockets for their in home care services, there are other avenues to pursue for obtaining clients that can get their care paid for. AHI Members contract with Healthcare Insurance Companies, Workers Compensation Insurance Companies, Medical Device Companies, and State Medicaid Waiver Programs. AHI Members get access to 55 insurance contracts and our unique in-house Veterans Pension Benefit Program. Getting signed up with Insurance Contracts is always a good idea – but in all transparency – there is NO GUARANTEE that any insurance company or government program will give any home care agency any referrals. Anyone who tells you any different is not being up front with you – and you should ask them to put in writing how many referrals you will be guaranteed on a monthly basis if they still insist you will be guaranteed referrals. Like all referral sources, insurance companies work with the home care agencies they “like.” It is up to the home care agency to stand out from the crowd and entice the insurance company to “trust them with referrals” vs. giving them to the agencies who are already on their list of providers and “liked.”  This is no easy task – but AHI trains its members on how to successfully market to these insurance companies. One such marketing technique is to let the insurance company know that our AHI members can help Veterans and their spouses get up to $2,169 per month to pay for more hours of care via a Pension Benefit that AHI Group can help people get approved for. Insurance companies start to listen when you talk in these terms because their ultimate goal is improving patient care outcomes and if I can get their patients money to pay for more hours of care then all of a sudden I am a value added home care agency vs. another home care agency who cannot get this funding for their patients. Which agency do you think the insurance company will want to work with? Lastly, many state Medicaid Programs pay so little per hour that most home care agenices choose not to work with them. Given the caregiver shortage in the industry right now, gone are the days of caregivers gladly working for minimum wage. Most caregivers won’t work for less than $2 hour more than minimum wage these days and if a state Medicaid Waiver Program is paying $16 hour – and the home care agency cost of their caregiver is $14 hour (after paying their employer taxes and workers compensation insurance) the home care agency is only left making $2/hour which is very little compared to the $7-$10 net profit AHI Members make using our Veterans Pension Benefit Program. At the end of the day, having a shinny office space, great software, website, caregiver training programs, and getting signed up with dozens of insurance companies is great – but that will NOT GUARANTEE a steady stream of clients. Without a steady flow of clients a business will die in its first year or two – no matter how slick its software or caregiver training programs are.

Q: Is this service only for seniors? How do seniors pay for care services?

A: No. There are many directions you can take your business. Your clients may include seniors, new mothers, plastic surgery clients, rehab patients, mental retardation patients, developmental disability patients, etc. Once in our Boot Camp, we will provide training on four additional profitable ‘snap on’ businesses that can drive hundreds of thousands in revenue to your home care agency and allow you to provide a “Full Spectrum Of Care Services” to your community. Seniors can pay for care services in a variety of self, government, and insurance related ways. Our national healthcare insurance program, workers compensation program, Medicaid waiver program, and medical device program provide a stream of clients to our AHI Group Member agencies. Medicare does not provide coverage – but as of January 2019 Medicare Advantage Plans (1/3 of seniors have these) will start paying for in home aide services. That is great news for the non medical home care industry! Our AHI Veterans Pension Benefit Program can help you assist Veterans and their surviving spouses get up to $2,169 a month that will go to their bank account and can be used to pay for in home aide services. It is estimated that 15 million seniors could now qualify for this VA Pension Benefit and only 500,000 currently have it. AHI Group VA Pension Benefit Program is all in house. No other home care organization in the nation has this. AHI Group VA Pension Benefit Program also provides financing to AHI member agency’s clients who don’t have the funds to pay for care while their application is in process with the VA. Your clients will love that they can get funds which can be used to pay for up to 25 hours of care per week – often without paying a penny out of their pocket to get started! You will love serving our honorable Veterans and their surviving spouses. The margins in the Veterans Pension Program are the same as Private Pay and Long Term Care Insurance which allow an agency to get a fair market rate for each hour of care provided. This equates to $6,400 per year in net profit) for each part-time client they are providing care for. Ninety part-time clients equals over $575,000 in owners take home income per year. Some Home Care Consultants/Franchises May Claim To Have A “VA Program” but when you ask for the details you will find they are referring to a completely different VA Program named the “VA Healthcare Homebound Program” that is managed by VA Hospitals and highly competitive to get access to. Many home care agencies fill out the one page form to “get on the list” but then the real challenge of actually getting referrals begins – as the VA is not just going to start calling you because you added your agency name to their list which already has another 50+ agencies listed. The key is to market to the case managers at the VA hospitals and clinics as they are the ones giving out the referrals for this program. The problem is that when you go to these case managers at the VA, they will likely say, “We already work with 4 home care agencies that we are happy with, please come back in 3 years when we have open enrollment again. Goodbye!” That is what happens 90% of the time when trying to get access to this VA Homebound Program. At AHI Group, we train people how to go after this VA Healthcare Homebound Program but we give them a leg up when doing so. The leg up is tied to AHI Group’s VA Pension Benefit Program (discussed above) which helps Veterans AND their spouses (over age 65) get up to $2,169 per month to pay for aide services in their home. The VA Pension Benefit is a completely different program to the VA Healthcare Home Bound program – the two are not related at all. AHI Group is the ONLY home care organization in the nation that offers the VA Pension Benefit to its home care agency’s clients. This allows our agencies a huge leg up when they go out to their communities as 15 million seniors could qualify for this pension benefit today ($2,169 a month/80 hours of care) and only 3% of them actually have it. The VA Pension Benefit is also much easier to market and find clients as our agencies can market DIRECTLY to 15 million Veterans and their spouses instead of having to market to case managers at VA Hospitals and VA Clinics and wait for a referral – which 95% of the time never occurs because the VA Case Managers already work with existing home care agencies they are happy with. AHI Group agencies also have a leg up when it comes to getting referrals from the VA Hospitals for the VA Healthcare Homebound Program as our agencies tell them, “Hey, I know you are going to give most of your patients about 5-10 hours of care per week, as you have budget restraints. Are there any of your patients who could use 20-30 hours of care per week? If so, send them my way as I can likely get them another 20 hours of care per week through a VA Pension Benefit that I’m aware of!” Of course, case managers at VA hospitals will be happy to send you their patients as they want them to get them more hours of care as that means better care outcomes for their patients and better results on their care outcome reports. Do you think the VA Case Manager will want to work with the agency who can get their patients more hours of care, for free, or the agency who cannot? END RESULT: Our AHI Group agencies can go out to their communities and market directly to elderly Veterans and their spouses to help them get a VA Pension Benefit that can get them $2,169 per month  that can be used to pay for approximately 80 hours of care per month. In addition, our AHI agencies can set themselves apart from their competition when going to the VA Hospitals by letting the case managers know that they can assist many VA Homebound Program patients get more hours of care for free – on top of what the VA can afford to provide them via the VA Homebound Program. Innovative thinking and unique programs set AHI Group apart from our competition! As a point of reference, a number of Home Care Franchises have tried and failed to create a similar VA Pension Benefit Program over the years and some people ask why ours is the only one left standing? The answer simply is the people on our VA Accredited Agent Team. There are literally only a handful of VA Accredited people across the nation who have the vast knowledge and experience required to process VA Pension Benefit Applications to the competency level required for a home care organization to loan out their own money to their agency’s customers. We have that level of competency and experience on our VA Accredited team and are therefore are able to loan funds to our agency’s clients in order for them to get approved for the VA Pension Benefit without them spending a penny out of their pockets to get the care started and get approved for the benefit. Contact our team to find out more about our VA Pension Benefit Program and how you can connect with the millions of Veterans and their surviving spouses who may qualify across the nation!

Q: Where do I receive my training and why do you limit your training Boot Camp class sizes to a small group?

A: You will receive your intense AHI Boot Camp Training at Irvine, Southern California. We limit the size of our AHI Boot Camp classes to 10 agencies (less than 20 people as each can bring two) to ensure that everyone gets the required one-on-one training and attention they need in order to learn the marketing techniques and other important skills required to operate their home care agency. Walking into a room with 50 – 100 people is not something you will encounter with StartupHomeCare. We have been to “Seminars” with 50 – 100 people in a room and we realize, like most people, that getting personal attention in such scenarios is very difficult. We want to ensure that each member agency goes out with sufficient training and knows exactly what they are supposed to do when they go out on their first day. Of course, our ongoing day to day support and training is critical to their success, but we want to ensure that they get that face to face in depth training at the beginning which will be invaluable to their confidence and ultimately their success starting out – after all, if you are not confident in what your sales approach is then how can you expect others to have confidence in giving you referrals? Confidence breads success in any arena. We will give you the confidence you need through our one-on-one training that can drill down to your specific situation and geographic location. We know that putting you in a room with 50 – 100 other people and trying to give you this same personalized training will not work out – so we don’t do it that way.

Q: Is the senior care industry right for me? What is the difference between Home Health and Personal Care at Home?

A: Working in the healthcare industry may not be the right fit for everyone. Our AHI Boot Camp training assumes our new clients know nothing about the home care industry and starts them from ground zero and takes them all the way to 100 – so to speak. However, if you do not have work experience in the healthcare industry then we ask that you get experience volunteering in your local community – for such organizations as Alzheimer Association or at your local hospital, skilled nursing facility, assisted living community, or senior center. Volunteering will give you a sense for the senior care industry and whether or not you enjoy working with seniors. If you really enjoy volunteering then you are likely to have the passion we require to join our organization. If you don’t enjoy volunteering then we recommend that you choose another industry as you will likely not find fulfillment in the home care industry and be focused only on chasing dollars which is not the type of individual we want in our organization. Agency owners who have a passion for the industry are always the most successful in this industry – all things being equal outside of that. Home Health and Personal Care at Home are very different. Home Health is providing skilled nursing, physical therapy, and occupational therapy care to seniors in their homes. This requires a Home Health License from the state, accreditation from an accrediting body like CHAP, Joint Commission, etc. and a Medicare/Medicaid Provider License. The average time frame for this process is 1.5 years and average costs range from $150,000 to $350,000 depending on the state you are in. Much of the cost is due to office space, software, personnel, patient care costs (that are paid out of owner’s pockets and not recoverable from Medicare) during the application process. The application process also requires that an agency get and maintain 10 clients for a minimum of two months in order for Medicare to come in and test the care scores of these patients to verify the agency met the regulatory and care minimum standards. Keep in mind that each client only last two months and then their care episode ends and they are no longer your client. If you don’t get to having 10 clients all at once Medicare will not schedule your on-site care outcomes inspection. You also need to have a Director of Nursing (licensed RN in your state) and a licensed MD on your board of directors. So, there is a lot of time, effort, risk, and cost with starting a home health business. Add that to the fact that the President of the National Association of Home Care and Hospice recently said that Home Health Agencies will need to diversify into providing personal care (non-medical) services in order to maintain profit margins due to Medicare cutting Home Health billing rates consistently year over year and projected to continue that way into the future. In addition, due to Obama Care (Affordable Care Act) hospitals are in pilot programs (that could go nationwide in the not too distant future) to require Medicare to pay the hospital a lump sum of money and they then get to decide how a patient gets the care they need for all of their ongoing services (home health included). Given that hospitals are getting Medicare cuts in certain areas of their operations, they are more than motivated to make up those losses in other area’s which is leading them to cut out losing profits to a 3rd party home health agency and instead hire their own RN’s directly to go out and do the home health visits – effectively cutting out the home health agency altogether. Please do your research on the home health industry before making a leap in that direction – there is more to it than initially meets the eye.

Q: How much money do I need to start this business?

A: You will need $20,000 for the AHI StartupHomeCare Membership fee. We recommend you also have at least $10K – $15K in additional funds available for start up costs like insurance, office lease deposit, etc. Click here for financing information.

Q: What support do you offer once I get done my Boot Camp training?

A: The main reason that 70% of non-franchise home care agencies fail in their first two years is that they don’t have sufficient support after opening their doors for business. Many of these individuals think that reading a book or spending $3,500 to $10,000 to attend a 3-4 day seminar will be enough to help them beat out their embedded competition and build a home care agency that stands the test of time and will truly build them wealth over the next 5-10 years. Two key questions to ask about the support/coaching an organization provides: 1) What is their motivation to provide superior ongoing coaching and support to help you become a $5+ million company vs. a $100,000 company? 2)  Which individuals will be providing the coaching and support and have they founded and grown multi-million dollar non-medical home care businesses? Financial Motivation:  With the franchise model, the franchiser is happy to supply ongoing support and coaching as you are paying them a 2.5% – 8% Royalty Fee taken off the top of your Gross Revenue which equals 1/3 of your owners take home income. However, a franchise is definitely motivated to help you grow your business. At AHI Group we are also financially invested in our member agency’s success but the difference is that we do not charge a royalty on everything our member agencies earn – we get revenue via three optional programs our members get to ‘opt-in’ to be part of. Who Is Providing The Lifetime Coaching And Support?  AHI Group members get the benefit of being trained by the founders of AHI Group – who personally started and grew their own multi-million dollar home care agency – launched in 2007 during a global recession in the most competitive market place for home care in the nation – Southern California. Mark and Kristy Dunning spend 90% of their time teaching and coaching AHI Group members. Being taught and coached by someone who has actually started a non-medical home care business from scratch and successfully grown it into a large organization is vastly different to being trained by someone who was once hired as an employee of an already existing and fully functioning home care business. Until someone has been in your shoes they cannot fully understand what it is like to be in your shoes. Mark and Kristy Dunning have been in the shoes of new agency owners and understand the stresses and challenges that come with starting a business from scratch. Click here to see their bio. We recommend getting the names of the individuals that will be coaching and supporting your agency (after initial training) in writing and request copies of their bio – so you know exactly what you are getting. What Does the Lifetime Coaching and Support Consist of?  At AHI Group we know that growing a multi-million dollar business doesn’t just “happen” after attending a few days of training and going out there into the marketing place. We some times hear people tell us that a consultant has told them they will “be around to answer questions” and ask us if we do the same? The answer to that question is: “No, we are not here to just answer questions when asked, we, like a franchise, realize that consistent one-on-one coaching has to take place in order for an agency to be successful. AHI Group requires its members to submit mandatory detailed documentation – on a weekly basis – during their first year (at a minimum) so that Mark, Kristy, and their coaching team can see the details of what is happening on the ground with the agency day to day. Where are they going? Who are they talking to? What are they talking about? What is the next step? AHI Group knows that a new agency often doesn’t know what questions they are supposed to be asking so they can’t be expected to just call when they think they need to. AHI Group provides a dedicated coach who has owned a successful home care business and who is there every step of the way to assist each agency owner grow their business. In addition, Mark and Kristy Dunning personally provide weekly “Mastermind Sales Calls” for AHI Group members to join in groups of 5-10. These Mastermind Sales Calls help build a sense of community for each AHI Group Member and are a wealth of knowledge/learning as all parties get to share their success stories, challenges, etc. and have Mark or Kristy Dunning give advice and solutions. NOTE: “Lifetime Coaching and Support” means we will provide unlimited (at no extra cost) coaching and support during the duration of you personally owning your home care business. In a nutshell, AHI Group allows its members to make choices – that’s the key difference between AHI Group and a franchise or a membership company who charges a flat $500 a month fee – no matter what the agency makes in revenue. AHI is motivated to have its agencies make as much revenue as possible and is motivated to provide programs that its members will CHOOSE to be apart of. If AHI programs are not unique or competitive then AHI members will not choose to use them. AHI is motivated like no other organization in the home care industry to stay current and on top of the competition. Our recurring revenue depends on it! Be Trained And Coached By The Best!  The right coaching and support, from those who have gone before you and been successful, is invaluable in helping you beat out your local competition who may already be “embedded” in your healthcare community. What will you say in your first 60 seconds of talking to a healthcare professional in your community? What will you show them? What sets your agency apart? If you don’t know the answers to these simple questions and have unique programs to back up your organization and stand out from the crowd you will undoubtedly have a tough time cracking any embedded competition. AHI’s long term care insurance contracts, training on how to crack government paid care programs, Assisted Living and Independent Living specialty programs that will generate revenue and provide much needed goodwill, and AHI low cost Veterans Benefit Care Loan Program are just some of the things that set AHI members apart from their competitors nationwide and allow them to help their clients pay for their care. Some people ask, “What motivates AHI Group to provide quality support?” Our answer: AHI funds its ongoing coaching/support via the recurring revenue it receives from the optional programs its agencies can “opt-in” to be part of – like its VA program that pays an average of $24-27/hr and allows a net profit (on average) of $7-10/hr. The average Veteran client qualifies for 68 hrs a month which equals $6,500 per year in take home owners income for the agency. Similar to private pay clients, ninety part-time Veteran clients equals $575,000 in net profit per year for the home care agency. As each agency gets more clients with these optional programs, AHI gets more revenue. So, AHI is motivated to help its agencies not only get day to day coaching/support but to also help them grow as AHI’s recurring revenue grows accordingly. Some people also ask, “What is the difference between AHI Group and Home Health Consultants?” Our answer:  Some consultants out there have started home health skilled care agencies and then added on non-medical aide services and now claim to be experts in starting non-medical home care agencies. Home health and non-medical agencies are two very different animals and viewed very differently in the healthcare community. Marketing a home health skilled care business from scratch and then adding non-medical care is a very different thing to marketing a non-medical home care agency from scratch. AHI Group founders (Mark and Kristy Dunning) started a non-medical home care business from scratch and grew it into a multi-million dollar business and are now helping other qualified candidates achieve that same success. AHI Group, Inc Reputation: We have 300+ members nationwide and growing. With that, you will not find a laundry list of negative feedback online from our members. This is because our members are getting what they were told from our organization and are busy growing their home care businesses with our day to day support. The proof is in the pudding – so to speak. We encourage you to do a Google search on “AHI Group, Inc” and see for yourself. Click Here to see articles about two AHI Group Member Home Care Agencies – that are in the $5+ million club – featured on the largest national provider of home care software’s website.

Q: A Franchiser told me that they spend thousands of dollars per year on marketing and that having their name will give me access to a lot of potential clients who have seen that advertising, is that correct?

A: If you were to ask a friend where to buy a hamburger they would probably recommend McDonald’s, Burger King, etc. Burgers are a product and that product is well advertised and a known entity. However, if you were to ask your friend where you could get non medical home care services they would probably scratch their head. This is because there is no mainstream marketing occurring in the home care industry and therefore there is no mainstream public understanding of companies who provide such home care services. There is no such thing as ‘branding’ in the home care industry. Franchises will use branding as their biggest leverage to charge you large sums of money up front and ongoing to take on their ‘branded’ name. Unfortunately, franchise owners find out sooner than later when they actually get out and start marketing their new franchise office that they gain no leverage or unearned respect due solely to their name. Respect and trust is earned through relationships in the home care industry. Our proprietary and cutting edge marketing techniques will successfully get you in doors that are closed to others. Our marketing approach is revolutionary and does not require a significant amount of funds. We can guarantee that 95% of the agencies out there are not using our unique marketing techniques.

Q: A franchiser told me their franchisees sell 'mobile alert devices' that their patients wear on their wrists and can push if need assistance and are in trouble when a caregiver is not around. Do you offer this optional product?

A: Yes, we have an agreement with a national provider of mobile alert devices that each of our member agencies can access.

Q: A franchise told me that they offer expert marketing training that will help my business grow quickly - what do you offer?

A: AHI founders started their own agency at the beginning of a depression (January 2007) in a market with over 200 other existing home care agencies (Southern California). AHI’s founders were able to market their new home care agency and grow it into a multi-million dollar business. Our marketing approaches and tools are unique, give back to the healthcare community, and have proven highly successful in today’s difficult economic landscape at beating out the local competition. Access To 55 National Healthcare Insurance Contracts And Our Unique In-House Veterans Pension Benefit Program. Getting signed up with Insurance Contracts is always a good idea – but in all transparency – there is NO GUARANTEE that any insurance company will give any home care agency any referrals. Anyone who tells you any different is not being up front with you – and you should ask them to put in writing how many referrals you will be guaranteed on a monthly basis if they still insist you will be guaranteed referrals. Like all referral sources, insurance companies work with the home care agencies they “like.” It is up to the home care agency to stand out from the crowd and entice the insurance company to “trust them with referrals” vs. giving them to the agencies who are already on their list of providers and “liked.”  This is no easy task – but AHI trains its members on how to successfully market to these insurance companies. One such marketing technique is to let the insurance company know that our AHI members can help Veterans and their spouses get up to $2,169 per month to pay for more hours of care via a Pension Benefit that AHI Group can help people get approved for. Insurance companies start to listen when you talk in these terms because their ultimate goal is improving patient care outcomes and if I can get their patients money to pay for more hours of care then all of a sudden I am a value added home care agency vs. another home care agency who cannot get this funding for their patients. Which agency do you think the insurance company will want to work with? Our AHI Veterans Pension Benefit Program can help you assist Veterans and their surviving spouses get up to $2,169 a month that will go to their bank account and can be used to pay for in home aide services. It is estimated that 15 million seniors could now qualify for this VA Pension Benefit and only 500,000 currently have it. AHI Group VA Pension Benefit Program is all in house. No other home care organization in the nation has this. AHI Group VA Pension Benefit Program also provides financing to AHI member agency’s clients who don’t have the funds to pay for care while their application is in process with the VA. Your clients will love that they can get funds which can be used to pay for up to 25 hours of care per week – often without paying a penny out of their pocket to get started! You will love serving our honorable Veterans and their surviving spouses. The margins in the Veterans Pension Program are the same as Private Pay and Long Term Care Insurance which allow an agency to get a fair market rate for each hour of care provided. This equates to $6,400 per year in net profit) for each part-time client they are providing care for. Ninety part-time clients equals over $575,000 in owners take home income per year. Some Home Care Consultants/Franchises May Claim To Have A “VA Program” but when you ask for the details you will find they are referring to a completely different VA Program named the “VA Healthcare Homebound Program” that is managed by VA Hospitals and highly competitive to get access to. Many home care agencies fill out the one page form to “get on the list” but then the real challenge of actually getting referrals begins – as the VA is not just going to start calling you because you added your agency name to their list which already has another 50+ agencies listed. The key is to market to the case managers at the VA hospitals and clinics as they are the ones giving out the referrals for this program. The problem is that when you go to these case managers at the VA, they will likely say, “We already work with 4 home care agencies that we are happy with, please come back in 3 years when we have open enrollment again. Goodbye!” That is what happens 90% of the time when trying to get access to this VA Homebound Program. At AHI Group, we train people how to go after this VA Healthcare Homebound Program but we give them a leg up when doing so. The leg up is tied to AHI Group’s VA Pension Benefit Program (discussed above) which helps Veterans AND their spouses (over age 65) get up to $2,169 per month to pay for aide services in their home. The VA Pension Benefit is a completely different program to the VA Healthcare Home Bound program – the two are not related at all. AHI Group is the ONLY home care organization in the nation that offers the VA Pension Benefit to its home care agency’s clients. This allows our agencies a huge leg up when they go out to their communities as 15 million seniors could qualify for this pension benefit today ($2,169 a month/80 hours of care) and only 3% of them actually have it. The VA Pension Benefit is also much easier to market and find clients as our agencies can market DIRECTLY to 15 million Veterans and their spouses instead of having to market to case managers at VA Hospitals and VA Clinics and wait for a referral – which 95% of the time never occurs because the VA Case Managers already work with existing home care agencies they are happy with. AHI Group agencies also have a leg up when it comes to getting referrals from the VA Hospitals for the VA Healthcare Homebound Program as our agencies tell them, “Hey, I know you are going to give most of your patients about 5-10 hours of care per week, as you have budget restraints. Are there any of your patients who could use 20-30 hours of care per week? If so, send them my way as I can likely get them another 20 hours of care per week through a VA Pension Benefit that I’m aware of!” Of course, case managers at VA hospitals will be happy to send you their patients as they want them to get them more hours of care as that means better care outcomes for their patients and better results on their care outcome reports. Do you think the VA Case Manager will want to work with the agency who can get their patients more hours of care, for free, or the agency who cannot? END RESULT: Our AHI Group agencies can go out to their communities and market directly to elderly Veterans and their spouses to help them get a VA Pension Benefit that can get them $2,169 per month  that can be used to pay for approximately 80 hours of care per month. In addition, our AHI agencies can set themselves apart from their competition when going to the VA Hospitals by letting the case managers know that they can assist many VA Homebound Program patients get more hours of care for free – on top of what the VA can afford to provide them via the VA Homebound Program. Innovative thinking and unique programs set AHI Group apart from our competition! As a point of reference, a number of Home Care Franchises have tried and failed to create a similar VA Pension Benefit Program over the years and some people ask why ours is the only one left standing? The answer simply is the people on our VA Accredited Agent Team. There are literally only a handful of VA Accredited people across the nation who have the vast knowledge and experience required to process VA Pension Benefit Applications to the competency level required for a home care organization to loan out their own money to their agency’s customers. We have that level of competency and experience on our VA Accredited team and are therefore are able to loan funds to our agency’s clients in order for them to get approved for the VA Pension Benefit without them spending a penny out of their pockets to get the care started and get approved for the benefit. Contact our team to find out more about our VA Pension Benefit Program and how you can connect with the millions of Veterans and their surviving spouses who may qualify across the nation! AHI Group Members Beat Their Competition With AHI Group’s VA Pension Benefit Program. There is also a home care finance type company out there who loans money to any home care agency’s clients and charges the agency 25-30% of their invoice and pays the agency Net 60 days. Any home care organization claiming to have a “VA Pension Benefit Loan Program” to assist low income Veterans is using this 3rd party company – guaranteed. Evidence of this can be found in a national home care franchisees VA Brochure (see bottom right of the brochure) click here. They state in their brochure that VA Pension Benefit clients get a maximum of 60, 50, 30 hours of care per month for each care scenario (Couple, Single Veteran, or Surviving Spouse – respectively). They are basically increasing their hourly rate so they have more net profit per hour – but that means they must provide less hours of care per month as the VA pays fixed lump sums per month depending on if it is a couple, single Veteran, or surviving spouse. Our AHI agencies can provide (on average) around 86, 73, 47 hours of care per month for each scenario. Which home care agency do you think a client is going to choose if both approach them and explain there is a VA benefit that can be used to pay for home care services? In addition, the 3rd party company takes $6-7 per hour of the net profit from the home care agency which leaves the agency little to work with (usually around $2-3 per hour net profit). Our AHI Members enjoy a profit margin of $7-$10 per hour on average in our VA Pension Benefit Program.

Q: Do you offer discounts on background checking software? Do you provide back end office management software to manage our employees, referral sources, clients, scheduling, billing, payroll, etc?

A: Depending on what state you are planning on starting your home care agency, would determine whether or not the state has a requirement that you use their background checking software. If your state does not require you use their background checking software then we can recommend easy to use background checking solutions for minimal cost. We provide a state of the art back office management software application that can be accessed from any internet connected device. The software provides management of employees, referral sources, clients, scheduling, billing, payroll, etc. It also allows employees to login via their cell phones (using GPS tracking) when they get to the client site or via the client’s telephone – which is called ‘telephony.’ Our product is developed and maintained by a company located here in the US (California) and truly is the cutting edge of home health management software. It allows one to pull up employee profiles and pictures on one’s iPad while sitting in a clients living room so you can show the client examples of the caregivers you could schedule to care for their family client – to name one state of the art benefit. Another is that the software has a client facing web portal that allows family clients and referral sources to login and see what activities of daily living have been performed on any given day with their family client/patient. The software also works interchangeably with Medicaid, Long Term Care Insurance, and Veterans Association billing. This product is not an antiquated, old fashioned looking product that some franchises use – this product was created by a private company that sells this product to large organizations such as ourselves and is always concerned about keeping it on the cutting edge of what is happening in the home health market place in order to stay competitive ongoing. You will be thrilled with what this product can do! The cost for this product is $10 per client per month up to 95 clients and then it caps at $950 per month for unlimited clients.

Q: Do we use your AHI Group, Inc name or do we create our own agency name?

A: You create your own home care agency name. We assist you with choosing a marketable name and the associated web domain. We create your logo and marketing materials using your chosen company name. You get to put the “AHI Member” icon on your website to show the world that you are part of AHI’s nationwide organization of independently owned home care agencies.

Q: Do you offer access to discounted professional liability insurance to save us money on premiums?

A: Yes. We can get you access to a discounted professional liability, non owned auto, and a bonding insurance policy that will save you up to $6,000 in premiums per year vs. going out on your own and trying to get such a policy. The premiums are usually $200 per month depending on the location geographically. This means that our clients, on average, save around $6,000 during their first three years in business vs. going out and getting their own individual insurance policy – if they can even get one.

Q: Do you offer any other 'snap-on' business solutions like assisted living community placement services?

A: Yes, we teach you how to market to assisted living communities and get paid by them to place residents in their facility. In addition, we teach you three other senior care snap on businesses that can drive hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue to your home care agency. You get trained on five businesses in total.

Q: I understand that each participant in your Boot Camp gets the Certified Senior Care Manager™ (CSCM™) certification?

A: Yes, each participant in our Boot Camp Training gets to become a Certified Senior Care Manager® (CSCM) after completing the AHI Boot Camp. The certification allows you to put the CSCM credentials next to your name on your business card, email signature, etc. letting potential clients and referral sources know that you are appropriately trained to manage the care of seniors – giving you credibility. You can also display this icon in your email signature:

Q: Why should I choose AHI Group, Inc - StartupHomeCare Membership Organization instead of buying policies and procedures and some marketing materials online for only $1,500?

A: If you have not worked as a home care administrator before then you probably don’t realize how much you have to learn. As the old saying goes, “You don’t know what you don’t know.” Reading a book about how to win a law suit hardly qualifies you to handle the day to day work of an attorney. The same goes for a home care administrator. Will the book train you on best practices of how to provide care services and show you visually so you know exactly how to train your employees to avoid costly workers compensation claims and worse yet client law suits against your agency for negligence or doing something an RN should have legally done? How about marketing? Does reading a book get you ready to hit the street and start getting referrals? How do you know the marketing techniques you may read about are tried and proven in the real world? What about on-going new and fresh techniques to get in doors that are closed to newcomers? What about hiring the right caregivers, training them, screening them, incentive them financially and non financially? What is normal in the industry? What does it take to retain good employees? What do they expect? What are the best ways to bill clients? What if they don’t pay on-time, what do you do? What is normal? All of these questions and hundreds more will have you spending your precious time stressing about things that will bring you no or little revenue and cause you a lot of time consuming issues. Your time is your biggest asset as a business owner and you need to focus on things that drive revenue and provide quality care outcomes. Having a proven business model in place to appropriately manage your employees, clients, referral sources, etc. will allow you to accomplish this difficult task. Without a steady flow of clients a business will die in its first or second year – no matter how slick its software or caregiver training programs are. Lastly, 10 days of training can only take you so far. Issues will arise after you launch your business that we could not possibly have time for during 10 days of initial training from our seasoned team of former home care agency owners. Our model requires a constant hands on coaching and mentoring of our AHI Members after they open their doors for business. Accountability is key to success and our AHI Members have weekly check points with their coaches and reports they are required to fill out weekly on their sales and marketing efforts that week. All of this and much more keeps our AHI Member agencies motivated, moving forwards, and handling situations correctly so as not to give themselves a black eye in their community which could end their agency before it really gets up to speed. We wish we could tell you that being successful in this business was as easy as reading a book – because we would publish one – but unfortunately that is not going to cut it unless you have previously worked as a home care administrator.

Q: Have any of your member agencies failed and gone out of business? If so, what were the reasons?

A: Yes, we have launched over 340 agencies across the US. Of those there have been 28 that have not succeeded and went out of business. That is an 8.5% failure rate. Nine of them had unforeseen family circumstances (divorce and death) that pushed the owners to quit. The others were mainly due to the owner’s inability to follow our business model due to the fact that they believed their way of doing things was the best for their particular situation. Spending money on marketing techniques that we warned against, etc. will not help build a strong business. We do our very best to hands on coach and guide our members to success but sometimes some of our members are just not willing to do all that we require of them day in and day out and they eventually run out of capital due to not getting enough clients. We also encourage everyone that comes to us to ask our competitors how many Private Duty (non medical) companies they have helped set up and how many have failed? With a little digging online, one will find that 70% of non-franchise home care agencies go out of business in their first two years. The reasons are as varied as the “home care consultants” helping these individuals launch their businesses but one fact remains across the board – most don’t get the tools, programs, and support they need after opening their doors for business in order to effectively compete with their local embedded competition. At AHI Group we are also more than happy to give qualified prospective AHI Members access to speak with our AHI Members to find out what their experience has been with our organization. In addition, we encourage you to see the 75+ FIVE STAR Google Certified Reviews that our members have left on our Google+ page online. Just do a Google search on “AHI Group, Inc” or “StartupHomeCare” to view our member’s online reviews. The proof is in the pudding!

Q: Marketing is essential to a business' survival. What type of marketing training do you provide?

A: We provide complete hands on guidance to marketing your agency: marketing plan creation; assessing local competition and market analysis; tips to increasing your marketing edge with the local competition; where to focus time and efforts for maximized benefit and referrals; creating the look and feel of a professional and stable agency that people can trust. Due to the fact that marketing and sales are so important to the success of a home care business we spend one half of the Boot Camp training on these topics. Imagine if someone put you in a boxing ring with Mike Tyson and said ‘Lets see who comes out on top!’ That is essentially how you will feel and stack up against other seasoned home care agency sales reps when going out and marketing your home care agency to the healthcare community if you don’t have solid and laser focused marketing training/role playing. We provide this level of in depth training at our AHI Boot Camp Training. We spend two full days on our Sales and Marketing Training in office (and two more days of home study) and offer unique, innovative, and proprietary sales techniques/programs that will get you in doors closed to other seasoned sales reps. We can help you become the leader among your local healthcare community sales reps!

Our AHI Members get access To 55 National Healthcare Insurance Contracts And Our Unique In-House Veterans Pension Benefit Program. Getting signed up with Insurance Contracts is always a good idea – but in all transparency – there is NO GUARANTEE that any insurance company will give any home care agency any referrals. Anyone who tells you any different is not being up front with you – and you should ask them to put in writing how many referrals you will be guaranteed on a monthly basis if they still insist you will be guaranteed referrals. Like all referral sources, insurance companies work with the home care agencies they “like.” It is up to the home care agency to stand out from the crowd and entice the insurance company to “trust them with referrals” vs. giving them to the agencies who are already on their list of providers and “liked.”  This is no easy task – but AHI trains its members on how to successfully market to these insurance companies. One such marketing technique is to let the insurance company know that our AHI members can help Veterans and their spouses get up to $2,169 per month to pay for more hours of care via a Pension Benefit that AHI Group can help people get approved for. Insurance companies start to listen when you talk in these terms because their ultimate goal is improving patient care outcomes and if I can get their patients money to pay for more hours of care then all of a sudden I am a value added home care agency vs. another home care agency who cannot get this funding for their patients. Which agency do you think the insurance company will want to work with?

Our AHI Veterans Pension Benefit Program can help you assist Veterans and their surviving spouses get up to $2,169 a month that will go to their bank account and can be used to pay for in home aide services. It is estimated that 15 million seniors could now qualify for this VA Pension Benefit and only 500,000 currently have it. AHI Group VA Pension Benefit Program is all in house. No other home care organization in the nation has this. AHI Group VA Pension Benefit Program also provides financing to AHI member agency’s clients who don’t have the funds to pay for care while their application is in process with the VA. Your clients will love that they can get funds which can be used to pay for up to 25 hours of care per week – often without paying a penny out of their pocket to get started! You will love serving our honorable Veterans and their surviving spouses. The margins in the Veterans Pension Program are the same as Private Pay and Long Term Care Insurance which allow an agency to get a fair market rate for each hour of care provided. This equates to $6,400 per year in net profit) for each part-time client they are providing care for. Ninety part-time clients equals over $575,000 in owners take home income per year.

Some Home Care Consultants/Franchises May Claim To Have A “VA Program” but when you ask for the details you will find they are referring to a completely different VA Program named the “VA Healthcare Homebound Program” that is managed by VA Hospitals and highly competitive to get access to. Many home care agencies fill out the one page form to “get on the list” but then the real challenge of actually getting referrals begins – as the VA is not just going to start calling you because you added your agency name to their list which already has another 50+ agencies listed. The key is to market to the case managers at the VA hospitals and clinics as they are the ones giving out the referrals for this program. The problem is that when you go to these case managers at the VA, they will likely say, “We already work with 4 home care agencies that we are happy with, please come back in 3 years when we have open enrollment again. Goodbye!” That is what happens 90% of the time when trying to get access to this VA Homebound Program.

At AHI Group, we train people how to go after this VA Healthcare Homebound Program but we give them a leg up when doing so. The leg up is tied to AHI Group’s VA Pension Benefit Program (discussed above) which helps Veterans AND their spouses (over age 65) get up to $2,169 per month to pay for aide services in their home. The VA Pension Benefit is a completely different program to the VA Healthcare Home Bound program – the two are not related at all. AHI Group is the ONLY home care organization in the nation that offers the VA Pension Benefit to its home care agency’s clients. This allows our agencies a huge leg up when they go out to their communities as 15 million seniors could qualify for this pension benefit today ($2,169 a month/80 hours of care) and only 3% of them actually have it. The VA Pension Benefit is also much easier to market and find clients as our agencies can market DIRECTLY to 15 million Veterans and their spouses instead of having to market to case managers at VA Hospitals and VA Clinics and wait for a referral – which 95% of the time never occurs because the VA Case Managers already work with existing home care agencies they are happy with.

AHI Group agencies also have a leg up when it comes to getting referrals from the VA Hospitals for the VA Healthcare Homebound Program as our agencies tell them, “Hey, I know you are going to give most of your patients about 5-10 hours of care per week, as you have budget restraints. Are there any of your patients who could use 20-30 hours of care per week? If so, send them my way as I can likely get them another 20 hours of care per week through a VA Pension Benefit that I’m aware of!” Of course, case managers at VA hospitals will be happy to send you their patients as they want them to get them more hours of care as that means better care outcomes for their patients and better results on their care outcome reports. Do you think the VA Case Manager will want to work with the agency who can get their patients more hours of care, for free, or the agency who cannot?

END RESULT: Our AHI Group agencies can go out to their communities and market directly to elderly Veterans and their spouses to help them get a VA Pension Benefit that can get them $2,169 per month  that can be used to pay for approximately 80 hours of care per month. In addition, our AHI agencies can set themselves apart from their competition when going to the VA Hospitals by letting the case managers know that they can assist many VA Homebound Program patients get more hours of care for free – on top of what the VA can afford to provide them via the VA Homebound Program. Innovative thinking and unique programs set AHI Group apart from our competition!

As a point of reference, a number of Home Care Franchises have tried and failed to create a similar VA Pension Benefit Program over the years and some people ask why ours is the only one left standing? The answer simply is the people on our VA Accredited Agent Team. There are literally only a handful of VA Accredited people across the nation who have the vast knowledge and experience required to process VA Pension Benefit Applications to the competency level required for a home care organization to loan out their own money to their agency’s customers. We have that level of competency and experience on our VA Accredited team and are therefore are able to loan funds to our agency’s clients in order for them to get approved for the VA Pension Benefit without them spending a penny out of their pockets to get the care started and get approved for the benefit. Contact our team to find out more about our VA Pension Benefit Program and how you can connect with the millions of Veterans and their surviving spouses who may qualify across the nation!

AHI Group Members Beat Their Competition With AHI Group’s VA Pension Benefit Program. There is also a home care finance type company out there who loans money to any home care agency’s clients and charges the agency 25-30% of their invoice and pays the agency Net 60 days. Any home care organization claiming to have a “VA Pension Benefit Loan Program” to assist low income Veterans is using this 3rd party company – guaranteed. Evidence of this can be found in a national home care franchisees VA Brochure (see bottom right of the brochure) click here. They state in their brochure that VA Pension Benefit clients get a maximum of 60, 50, 30 hours of care per month for each care scenario (Couple, Single Veteran, or Surviving Spouse – respectively). They are basically increasing their hourly rate so they have more net profit per hour – but that means they must provide less hours of care per month as the VA pays fixed lump sums per month depending on if it is a couple, single Veteran, or surviving spouse. Our AHI agencies can provide (on average) around 86, 73, 47 hours of care per month for each scenario. Which home care agency do you think a client is going to choose if both approach them and explain there is a VA benefit that can be used to pay for home care services? In addition, the 3rd party company takes $6-7 per hour of the net profit from the home care agency which leaves the agency little to work with (usually around $2-3 per hour net profit). Our AHI Members enjoy a profit margin of $7-$10 per hour on average in our VA Pension Benefit Program.