After quality of care, cost is probably the biggest factor in choosing a nursing home. That's why you want to be sure you fully understand what is -- and what is not -- included in a facility's fee structure. Nursing homes are required by law to spell out their exact fees for service, and you should take a copy with you in writing so that you can compare all of the potential facilities in the quiet of your own home. Don't assume that something like meal choice, gym access or physical therapy visits are automatically included in the monthly rate. Such line items can quickly balloon what might seem like a bargain rate at first glance. You'll also want to ask about the nursing home's policy regarding the increase of fees so that you are not shocked by skyrocketing prices once you choose a home.