A Downsizing Guide For Seniors

Ferguson & Ferguson

Attorneys at Law

April 24th, 2018

A Downsizing Guide For Seniors

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Downsizing is the right choice for many seniors. Maintaining a large home that is now an empty nest may not be worth it, however, relocating to a new home can be stressful. How do you decide whether or not this option is for you?

The Benefits of Downsizing

Relocating to a smaller home allows seniors to have everything close at hand and can be a great boon to aging in place. Less square footage means less spending on utilities and property taxes, and less hassle over upkeep like lawn care and snow removal.

According to U.S. News, downsizing has many hidden benefits, too. Reverting to a simpler life is not just less costly; it can decrease your stress levels. Reducing clutter can help keep your mind clear and focused, a critical detail as you grow older. To eliminate your stress over moving, you should start planning as soon as possible.

Planning for Your Move

Even if you have not finalized your decision to move, you can still start organizing and decluttering your home. Here’s how.

Know Your Limitations

Before you start, know your limitations. If you cannot easily access things, get help moving items out of basements, attics and high closets. Do not overexert yourself or climb on furniture to reach items. You can also buy or rent the proper ladder.

If it’s more appropriate, you can hire a packing company just as you would hire a reliable moving company. Ask friends and family to refer vendors they trust.

Decluttering Junk

First, categorize everything that’s easy to eliminate such as ancient school projects from your adult children, old clothes you thought you’d give away, moldy books, and so on. Next, toss out anything that you haven’t seen or looked at in years. (There’s a reason some things were hard to access!) Read more detailed tips on getting rid of junk in this article from Caring.com.

Categorize The Good Items

Every item that is in good condition but hasn’t been used for a while is something you should consider selling or donating. If you have items that you think might be valuable, get them appraised first. Depending on the items, you have a number of ways you can sell them, from auction houses to selling online.

Ask your accountant how to deal with sales and donations for tax purposes. If you’re someone who never gets around to donating, just sell or discard those items.

Refer to this guide to downsizing for seniors from Goodcall.com for more tips.

Moving Day

Moving day can be stressful but proper planning of worrying details will help you to stay calm. For example, you should keep valuable items with you instead of packed up on the truck. Get more moving day tips from this checklist at Senior Care Homes.

Self-Care For Moving Day

It’s important that you remain as calm and stress-free as possible on moving day so be sure to get a good night’s sleep before your move. Use a checklist the night before and day of the move to keep track of everything. Don’t make any other plans for that day, and be sure to have food on hand – or a place you can order from – before and after you leave.

Help For Your Pet

If you have a pet, he might be nervous on moving day. Doors and windows are usually open for the day so it’s best to board your dog so he does not get lost. Be sure to feed and walk him at the beginning of the day and have food available for him when he returns to his new home. Keep his dog toys and bed nearby rather than packed up on the truck.

Moving a house you’ve lived in for many years can seem overwhelming. By taking the time to break down your tasks and plan ahead, you can reduce your stress for a smoother transition to your new home.