As your parents age, it may become obvious that the large family home is much more house than they need. Often, elderly parents that are still independent choose to downsize, moving into a smaller home or even into an apartment or condo. It can be difficult to help them as a grown child, especially if you live far away and have your own family to take of. The following tips can provide you with ways to help your parents with this life change, even if it is only from a distance.
Tip #1: Schedule a working visit a few months in advance
The most difficult part of downsizing can be sorting through a lifetime's worth of possessions. As soon as your parent's voice their desire to move, offer to come out for a short visit to help them sort possessions before they place the home on the market. Since you are familiar with your parent's home and habits, it is best to have a plan in place before you arrive. Start with the area you think will be the easiest for them, then move on to harder areas once they are into the habit of purging. Also, keep in mind that not everything has to be donated. If your parents are having an especially hard time, provide them with the option to pass on heirlooms to the next generation now instead of later, or offer to rent a storage unit.
Tip #2: Help them find an agent
Look for an agent with experience helping elderly people relocate and downsize. They will know the best retirement-friendly communities and how to work with people like your parents that may not have moved in decades. With your parents' permission, you can request to be copied on emails with any listing information, so you can help your parents in their home search from afar.
Tip #3: Find a complete moving service
Residential movers that offer all the bells and whistles are a must, especially if you can be there to help on moving day. Choose a mover that offers full packing and unpacking services, along with assembly help for furniture and similar items. There are even movers that are qualified to help your parents set up their entertainment system or computer upon arrival to the new home. A mover that also offers storage is also a plus. By combining your parents storage and moving needs, you can help them save money. As an added benefit, the movers can easily take any items to storage that end up not fitting into the new home. Contact a moving company like Gardner Moving to learn more.