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Marjorie P. Lee Senior Living Blog

Trouble with Your Senior Living Move? Hire a Professional

Aug 14, 2014 3:59:00 PM

moving-coordinatorPreparing for any move can be challenging, but it can be especially so when you are also moving to a apartment. And that’s typically the case for most seniors when they opt to move into residential retirement care or assisted living. There’s a lot of planning, downsizing, distributing and packing to do on the front end of the move, and a lot of unpacking and arranging to do on the other.

For a senior, that can seem a little overwhelming— especially when you’re also trying to adjust to a new environment and changing physical or cognitive abilities. But you don’t have to undertake everything alone. Family and friends will help you if you ask for help.

Or you might consider hiring a professional moving coordinator to guide you through the process and arrange the physical work. There are even reputable moving coordinators who specialize in addressing the special needs inherent to senior moves.

What can a professional moving coordinator do for you?

A lot more than you realize, probably. Moving to a retirement community isn’t simply a matter of packing things up, getting rid of a few unneeded items and showing up with a truck and a handcart. You need to know how much space you’re going to have in your new place. You’re going to need help making choices or repurposing things you won’t be taking with you. And you’re going to need someone help you put all the pieces together.

A professional moving coordinator can:

Consult with you to see what your particular needs are. 

Why are you opting to move to a retirement community or assisted living facility? Do you have mobility issues that should be addressed when deciding how much of your furniture to take and how it will be placed in your new home? Do you have difficulty seeing or hearing? Do you take medications that leave you feeling dizzy? 

If so, your coordinator will probably recommend you go light on the furniture, then make sure that your things are arranged in an aesthetically pleasing way, but allowing for with wide walking paths.

Help you pack. 

You’re going to need boxes, tape, bubble wrap, foam peanuts and maybe a few extra hands. Your coordinator can provide all of that— and also oversee the moving process. It never hurts to have an extra set of eyes on moving day to ensure that things go smoothly.

Arrange your furniture, place interior decorations and connect electronics.

Once you have all your stuff moved in, having someone there to make it home is a really valuable service— especially for seniors with mobility or balance issues.  Having an expert there who can help you by making sure that everything you’re going to need is within easy reach can help you to prevent injuries and mishaps down the road.

Clean and tidy up your new home. 

On your first night in the new place, wouldn’t it be nice to go to sleep in a freshly made bed, instead of rummaging through boxes to find your sheets, pillow and blanket? With a professional moving coordinator, you can essentially step out of your former home and step into a new residence where all your belongings are ready to go.

Help you to re-purpose, re-home, donate, or liquidate unneeded items. 

This might include arranging delivery of items you are donating to the particular charity to which you wish them to be taken. Some professional moving coordinators can even help you get rid of unnecessary vehicles.

As with any move, start early.

Once you have made the decision to move into a senior living community, move ahead with your preparations, even if the move seems like a long way off. 

Allow yourself plenty of time to find out all the pertinent information you’ll need about your new community, its policies and guidelines, and to find help in getting you moved. And if you need extra help, remember that there are folks out there whose job it is to make your move as simple and painless as possible.

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Bryan Reynolds

Written by: Bryan Reynolds

Bryan Reynolds is the Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations for Episcopal Retirement Services (ERS). Bryan is responsible for developing and implementing ERS' digital marketing strategy, and overseeing the website, social media outlets, audio and video content and online advertising. After originally attending The Ohio State University, he graduated from the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati, where he earned a Bachelor of fine arts focused on electronic media. Bryan loves to share his passion for technology by assisting older adults with their computer and mobile devices. He has taught several classes within ERS communities as well as at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute run by the University of Cincinnati. He also participates on the Technology Team at ERS to help provide direction. Bryan and his wife Krista currently reside in Lebanon, Ohio with their 5 children.

Topics: retirement community, senior living, assisted living, Cincinnati

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