Putting Off the Big Move

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For over thirty years, my parents have been the proud owners of a two-acre homestead. They bought it in their 50s when they were still able to tackle almost anything. Now in their 80s the story is quite different.

Are your parents getting to an age where taking care of their home has become too big a burden, but they just hate to move?

Rethinking Home

Home. It’s much more than just a word. It’s where the memories happen. It’s where the family comes to be together. If you or your parents have been in a home for decades, probably all the family members hate the thoughts of selling that precious home. So, like my parents, most of us put it off as long as possible.

When my parents bought the two acres, it was just an empty lot with a creek running along one side. They found the plans for their dream home and dug in for a whole lot of work. Well, they’re still working but it’s getting almost more than they can do. Daddy is weak and mama now is having trouble with arthritis. They’re used to keeping that place looking like a park but that has taken a toll.

My mama dearly loves to work in her yard. It’s a part of who she is. It’s her happy place when she’s digging in the dirt and riding her little mower all over the place. But during a recent phone call she told me she thinks it’s time to sell. She said she looks outside to all the things she wants to be doing and knows she can’t. Her knees are getting bad.

This may sound like a no-brainer, but selling a home you’ve lived in for decades is far from a piece of cake. Everyone has an opinion. The stuff you accumulate over thirty years is mind-blowing. Just getting a place ready to sell takes a whole lot of work. That doesn’t make you want to just jump in and do it, especially when you’re having health issues.

My mama’s twin sister and her husband have just gone through the big move. My mama calls my Aunt Sally back in Oklahoma several times a week to see how everything is going. Well, things are not going all that well. Like my mama, my Aunt Sally and Uncle Jimmy lived on an acreage for many decades. That was decades of enjoying nearly no neighbors and a whole lot of privacy. Now they’ve moved into town and they’re having to get used to neighbors, noise from the street and a house where a lot of their furniture will not fit.

Senior Moving Experts

Some of the problems they face could have been made better with a senior moving expert who can guide seniors through all the ups and downs of what it takes for a smooth move. While this used to be a tiny industry, with the aging of the Boomers there are now a lot of experts to chose from.

  • A senior mover can help from the get-go. Before you even put your house up for sale, they can help you decide on how to get rid of unneeded possessions and some will even hold your estate sale.
  • Senior movers know the people in real estate who work well with seniors. This can make selling your home a lot easier.
  • Most of these experts are “hands-on” and will work with you to get your home ready to sell and to weed out unneeded possessions.
  • They know what senior homes are available in your area from private homes to senior apartments, assisted living and more.
  • A good senior mover will be on hand the day of the move to make sure it goes smoothly.
  • They won’t leave you high and dry after the move, but check in to help with any residual problems you might experience, even if what you need is a good listener!
  • These experts will even inventory the contents of your home so your adult children who live far away can help you decide what needs to be sold or just passed down to a family member.

Even if you don’t use a senior mover, you can learn from their experience.

Some of these companies are actually operated by or at least hire psychologists who are experts in the field of aging. Letting go of treasured items can be traumatic for seniors who have probably experienced a lot of loss in their life.

So if it’s your parents that are thinking about a move, it’s time for you (like me) to do your homework. Start on the internet and find out the information that will help. Decide if a senior move expert might be the best way to go, or at least find out what strategies they use to make moving easier on older folks.

If you’ve already gone through this, please don’t hesitate to let us know what you have learned. We all need to be each others’ cheerleaders!

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