Moving Made Simple for Older Adults

By
Services for Real Estate Pros with Paxem, Inc.

Moving can overwhelm anyone.  It is especially true for older adults who have lived in the same house for dozens of years.  For many it is difficult to take that first step towards retirement.  Changing their lifestyle, facing the insurmountable task of "right sizing" and fears of losing their independence can stall them into not doing anything.  What is so wonderful now is that there is a huge industry that takes the worry and work out of the moving and right sizing process.  The companies use Senior Move Managers to assist throughout the entire process.

 

The following are some helpful hints if you plan on doing many things yourself.  Remember, there is always help available.  You can get recommendations through your location senior community, Chamber of Commerce, or other friends.

 

  1. De-clutter immediately.  Get rid of everything you don’t want, don’t use, or don’t need.  Donating will help another person & help reduce your costs for the move.  If you have valuable items that you and your family don't want, estate sale/resale companies can hold an estate sale in your home, remove the items to have an estate sale elsewhere, put them into consignment or you can sell them outright to a dealer. 
  2. Stage the home for sale.  You’ll want to: remove most personal items that draw attention away from your home, deep clean (carpets, windows, and house), de-clutter, remove excess furniture, and make sure it smells and looks warm and inviting.  You may need to do more such as paint, replace countertops, fix the grout, etc.  You should hire a stager to assist with this process. 
  3. If you’re packing yourself plan to start the minute you decide to move.  Pack slowly and don’t overexert yourself.  You’re using muscles you normally don’t use during normal activities.  Use unprinted newspaper so that there is no ink that can ruin your antiques and so you don't have to wash every single item you've packed.
  4. Accept help.  If family or friends offer to help, take them up on that offer.  If you don’t have anyone to help you then hire a professional to assist you.
  5. Do not keep books, magazines, or any other printed material unless they are valuable or you absolutely must keep it.  Paper adds pounds and that adds dollars to your moving costs.
  6. Clean your items off before you pack them.  When you get to your final destination all you have to do is set things up.
  7. Make sure that you get several moving quotes.  Costs vary and so does quality.  You will want to know if they have liability and workman's comprehensive insurance, do they protect the house during the move out and move-in process, what happens if you have a claim, etc..  Get referrals from people you know, the senior community you are moving into or your local chamber of commerce.
  8. Remove all valuables from the house before outside contractors arrive.  This would include jewelry, stocks & bonds, money, anything of high value, and your prescription medications.
  9. When the movers arrive do a walk through with them so they see everything.  Make sure that you have someone in the home as well as by the truck to monitor the movers.
  10. If you’re moving locally follow the truck to the new home.  Make sure each room is labeled so the movers know which boxes go in each room and direct them with the furniture using the floor plan you or your senior move manager has designed.
  11. If you're moving out of state seal the container and make sure that the truck has a numbered seal on it.  Write the seal number down.  If it's a different number at destination the mover has opened the container and has some explaining to do.

 

Putting all tasks in writing will help keep you organized during your move and also help reduce stress.  Initial consultations with the senior move manager should be free.  They can help you put together an action plan so you know what needs to be done and have a time line.  Prices vary for services and by company.  Interview the companies and choose the one you feel most comfortable with.  The move should always be about you and your needs.

Comments (5)

Joan Congilose
New Jersey Properties - Manalapan, NJ
Helping Sellers & Buyers

I never heard of this service but it is good to know. I come across this all of the time with buyers that want to move to the active adult communities and are overwhelmed at the thought of selling their present homes & decluttering & parting with their 25 yrs plus of memorabilia

Sep 29, 2011 02:02 AM
Andrew Capelli
Hoover Elementary - Hazel Park, MI

Jennifer: Those are great tips no matter how old you are- Thanks for sharing!

Sep 29, 2011 02:11 AM
Kathy Sheehan
Bay Equity, LLC 770-634-4021 - Atlanta, GA
Senior Loan Officer

I wasn't aware of this service, but I can see that there is a need for it.  Thanks for sharing the information.

Sep 29, 2011 02:12 AM
Sheila Anderson
Referral Group Incorporated - East Brunswick, NJ
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133

Good morning Jennifer. I never heard of this speciality either but it seems to me prudent whether you are 40 or 80. Just great information. Suggested.

Sep 29, 2011 02:29 AM
Anonymous
Jennifer Prell

Thank you all for your nice feedback.  This is a new industry and just getting recognized.  I love working with seniors and it's fun!

Sep 30, 2011 10:14 AM
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