We also saved hard and went without, so we could have a nice home, so I quite identify with much of what you've said. However, Attendance Allowance is NOT means tested, and dementia should enable you to claim it. If SSD recognised you needed carers support, did they offer you the money the package would cost, as "direct payments" so you could arrange it yourself? If not, ask for a new assessment with full details of the cost of the package.