There has been some experiment in Ireland in recent years with boarding out of elderly persons. This comprises the placement, usually with a non-relative in a private household, of an elderly person, with the carer receiving some reward. This study assesses the cost of care for a small group of elderly persons in boarding-out care compared with a similarly dependent group of elderly persons in welfare home institutional care. The cost of boarding out care is less than half the cost of care in the welfare home. This result is encouraging given the feeling that quality of care in boarding out is not below that of institutional care.