Most seniors will eventually move out of their homes, either because they want to downsize their current accommodations for health or financial reasons, or because they are moving to an assisted living or senior living community.
Is there a move planned in your future? Or a move you’re coordinating for a loved one? Here are some tips for making the big move a little bit easier.
- Plan wisely – and early! Moving is a tremendous undertaking at any age, but if you have been in your home for a very long time, it can be even more intimidating. You will need to sort through a lifetime’s worth of items. Make a list of what you’re taking with you, what will go to charity or friends and family, and what should be thrown out. It may also be helpful to plan which rooms are packed in which order. Many find that leaving the kitchen and bathrooms until last ensures that the space is still livable until the end of the move.
- Get a grip on space. Understand just how much space you will have at your new home. Many seniors are downsizing into smaller homes. That means you may not have room for some of your bulkier furniture or unused items. Plan out what will go where in your new space, and make arrangements for those things you can’t take with you.
- Save what matters. Remember that list you made early on during the planning stage? It should contain what you want to take with you to your new home. It should take into account the space that you have allotted for it and how it rates on your “must have” scale. You may find that there are items on this list that matter less than others. Those may be items better shared with others or tossed away.
- Share useful but unused items. Sometimes we hang onto things even though we haven’t used them in years. When you’re moving to smaller accommodations, the best thing to do with these useful but unused items is to give them away to charity or to friends and family. Go through your closets and look for items you haven’t worn for a year or more. Do the same with kitchen items and souvenirs and knickknacks.
- Toss what means least. Though it may seem like every item is precious, there will be a certain number of things that don’t mean very much to you and aren’t very useful to others. These are the things that should be tossed out. If you’re having trouble determining what to throw out, read this guide on how to decide what to keep and what to bin.
- Ask for help! We’re all human, and no one expects you to move house all by yourself. Reach out to friends and family or even professional moving companies to get the help you need to manage and sort your items.
Good luck with your move, and your next great adventure!