Left untreated, an addiction can devastate a person’s physical health and mental happiness. Prolonged addictions can also ruin a family’s finances. For example, a person addicted to a prescription painkiller like OxyContin may need to take dozens of pills each day in order to fight off symptoms of drug withdrawal, and according to CNN, each pill might cost that user $50 to $80. To keep this addiction alive, a user might blow through the family’s savings and retirement accounts, and even run up high credit card bills.
Families trying to support a person like this may not have deep pockets to draw upon when the person with the addiction needs the help that a sober living facility can provide. Thankfully, there are low-cost options that can help.
In an extensive study conducted on sober living facilities, published in the Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, researchers found that sober living communities aren’t funded by state or local governments. In most cases, residents pay for their own care and attend to their own bills. It’s likely that this structure is in place due to the type of care provided in a sober living community.
Since there are no therapists involved in the running of the facility, in most cases, and since the programs aren’t subject to medical reviews and don’t provide medical treatment, they can’t really be considered a medical treatment. Instead, they’re considered a voluntary step people take in order to get better. Just as someone might choose to move to a better community to avoid a dangerous neighborhood, a sober living community is considered an optional step people take on the road to recovery, and they do so voluntarily.
As a result, it’s difficult to find community agencies that offer sober living communities to residents. People of low incomes might find it relatively easy to find a community drug rehab, and they might even enroll in these programs with no fees at all, but visiting a community agency and asking for a specific sober living home might seem like a dead end. These just aren’t the kinds of places most communities fund and offer.
In some cases, these communal homes have strict requirements regarding sobriety. They may not run in a strict sober living home model that’s described elsewhere on this website, but they may provide people with a safe and sober place to live as they get back on their feet once more. For people with a very low ability to pay, this could be a good option, and it could be found by visiting a social worker at the city, state or county level. An addiction therapist could point clients in this direction, if needed.
When public assistance isn’t available in order to deal with a difficult problem, many people turn to public charities, and according to Independent Sector, there are close to 1.1 million organizations like this in the United States. Some of these charities assist with addiction issues directly, providing low-cost care for people in the early stages of recovery. Others operate their own networks of sober living facilities, linking people with care they might never be able to attain on their own.
Some addiction treatment professionals keep a list of charitable organizations at hand, so they can refer their clients as needed. Sometimes, however, people need to take searches into their own hands.
Looking for local charities via the Internet is a good place to start, as many of these organizations are active online and allow people to submit applications with their computers.
It’s important to note that some of these charitable homes have strict rules about who can and cannot enroll. For example, they might require clients to demonstrate a dire financial need, as well as a long-term commitment to sobriety, and they might require other residents of the house to vote to accept all potential new members. As a result, just finding a home may not be enough. Sometimes, people who want to use charitable organizations need to focus on their image and their presentation, so they’ll be accepted by these groups and get the help they need.
While some sober living homes can be posh and luxurious, some sober homes are designed to attract people who can’t afford high fees and intensive bills. These homes might charge fees that are comparable to an apartment in the area, meaning that low-income people might be able to afford to participate, even if their family bank accounts aren’t bursting with cash. Again, therapists might have a list of homes that fit this description, and if not, a search on the Internet with the terms “low cost” or “inexpensive” attached to the words “sober living home” might help people find and obtain the help they need.
While these low-cost options might be helpful for some people, there are some who need to escape their communities. They need to live in different environments, perhaps in more luxurious neighborhoods, so they won’t be exposed to constant temptation to use and abuse drugs. At first glance, it might seem as though these people shouldn’t even consider private, luxurious sober living options, as they might be unlikely to pay the associated fees. However, the rehab community has traditionally been amenable to the needs of low-income addicts. For example, in a study conducted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 62.1 percent of facilities provided fees on a sliding scale, and 49.5 percent provided treatment at no charge for those who couldn’t pay.
Given that subsidized treatment for addiction is common, it’s no surprise that many private sober living homes also provide low-cost or no-cost options to those who cannot pay. These facilities may require clients to demonstrate financial need through bank statements, check stubs and credit scores, but those who can provide this information may find that they can get help from very nice facilities that they never thought they’d be able to afford.
Some sober living homes are quite upfront about their policies, and they may even highlight their charitable options on the first page of their website. Others are more circumspect, however, and they may not even outline any kind of payment plan in a public forum. Those who want to examine this option, therefore, might do well to find a program that looks beneficial via a web search and then call and ask about policies and procedures in place for low-income clients. Most facilities provide operators or telephone counselors who are trained to answer questions like this, so the conversation tends to be quick, smooth and professional.
Sober living homes are located all across the country, and in some cases, people who have addictions and income issues might need to travel in order to obtain care. The facilities near their homes may be full to capacity, for example, or the programs in their neighborhoods might not be willing to arrange for payments or alternate funding options. Sometimes, traveling to a different state for care allows people to get the financial assistance they need, so they can achieve the recovery they desire. While traveling isn’t required for everyone who has an addiction issue, those who do travel may find that the hassle of relocation is well worth the benefit.
People starting a search often lean on:
There are other avenues people can explore as they search, however, and these methods might be even more helpful for people in need. For example, we maintain a database of sober living homes in the Foundations Recovery Network. We’re happy to run a search for you, and explain costs, benefits and programs in an open and complete manner. All calls are kept confidential, and there are no fees assessed for our time. We just want to make sure you find the program you need. Please call us to get started on your search.