Putting a loved one in a nursing home is never an easy choice, and if you're leaning toward keeping the person at home with you, here are some facts that may help you decide. We got these from the book 1,001 Things They Won't Tell You: An Insider's Guide to Spending, Saving, and Living Wisely. These are the untold truths about nursing homes: * First: They're understaffed. Donna Wagner is the director of the gerontology program at Towson University. She says the biggest problem at nursing homes is a shortage of nurses, nurse aides and other workers. Ideally, there should be one nurse for every 5 to 6 people. Yet some facilities have only one registered nurse for 50 to 70 patients, and the problem will only get worse. The population of Americans aged 65 and over is expected to reach 72 million by 2030, nearly twice what it is now. The shortage of staff often stems from budget issues, and a lack of nurse educators needed to train new registered nurses. So before you put a parent in one, ask what the nurse to patient ratio is. * Another thing nursing homes won't tell you: Things get stolen. Cash, clothes and jewelry are commonly swiped items, and the problem is that people have accepted this. That's the word from Patricia McGinnis, executive director of California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform. She says theft is so widespread that a lot of times people don't even bother reporting it. Thankfully, a law recently passed requiring nursing homes to provide better protection for patients. This includes doing background checks to weed out potential employees with criminal histories. * One more nursing home fact: They can kick a resident out anytime they want. Care facilities sometimes force a resident out when the person requires too much attention or is otherwise considered a problem. If it seems like a trumped up reason, you can appeal, but you'd probably be better off finding another facility anyway. If you need help finding a facility, try ElderCare.gov or HealthGrades.com.