Downsize While Maintaining Control

Items a property manager handle

Many seniors and boomers put off the decision to downsize because they want to keep their current home. It’s not that they’re necessarily interested in living in their current home, but do not see the benefit in selling it at the time.

Perhaps one of their children would like to live in the home, but is unable at this time to afford to pay the property taxes, utilities and maintenance fees associated with owning a home. The market also is favoring buyers instead of sellers at this time, so some home owners wish to hold onto their homes until the market is more favorable to them as sellers. Continue reading

Don’t Let an Oversized Home Drown Your Retirement Dreams

Happy senior couple planning retirement travel

Ever dreamed of traveling the world, visiting places you never had the time – or the money – to visit when you were younger? Many people enjoy retirement travel once the kids are out of the house and the rigors of a daily job are no longer an issue.

But if you own a home, there still is a stumbling block to any adventurous plans you may have for your golden years. Houses require a lot of work, especially if you plan to leave them for an extended period of time. Who will mow the grass or shovel the snow? Who will make sure the windows and doors remain secure in your absence? If a pipe bursts while you’re away, who will clean up the mess and call a plumber for repairs? There’s little doubt about it. Leaving behind a home to travel can be a huge pain. Continue reading

Occupational Therapists Vital Part of Downsizing

Senior visits occupational therapists

There are many providers involved in the downsizing process. From real estate professionals to estate planning attorneys, a number of professionals can assist.  Occupational therapists are among those who play a vital role in downsizing.

Occupational therapy practitioners work across the age span, according to Natalie Anderson, an occupational therapist and owner of OTPlus in University Place, WA. “However, specifically with seniors, OTs address all aspects of aging, from wellness strategies to treatment following injury, disease or disability,” she said. “With a focus on function, OTs help keep older adults independent and safe, and maintain their ability to engage in meaningful and productive activities.” Continue reading

Risking Your Own Health to Care for Others

Frustrated senior couple over being a caregiver

As more Americans insist on aging in place, family members and friends find themselves filling the role of caregiver.

According to the Family Caregiver Alliance, the percentage of caregivers who are caring for those aged 85 or older is 70 percent, with parent care making up the majority of those caregiving situations. Most care recipients – 58 percent – continue to reside in their own homes, with another 20 percent living with their caregiver. Continue reading

Not all Seniors Forced to Sell

happy seniors choosing renting or home sharing

Selling a home to downsize is not always the best option for seniors and boomers.

For some, selling an existing home in order to help fund retirement is a reality. Their home may be too big and too expensive to maintain on their own. For others, the death of a spouse leaves them lonely and concerned for their safety when living alone. Seniors and boomers in those situations absolutely should consider selling and downsizing. Continue reading

Home Upgrades Guarantee a Return on Investment

home upgrades

So you’ve finally made the decision to downsize. As part of the process, you have to get your existing home ready to sell.

If you’re like most people, you’ve lived in your current home for awhile, which probably means it is in need of updating and/or repairs. But if you’re like many Boomers and seniors, your income is limited, so spending tens of thousands of dollars on repairs and upgrades is not in the budget. So how can you attract buyers and earn enough money to hopefully fund your retirement? Continue reading

Just a Little Forgetful…or is it Something Else?

Forgetful man on a park bench

Have you ever walked into a room, only to find yourself standing there, trying desperately to remember why it was that you walked into the room in the first place?

Everyone has had moments such as these; however, when the moments become more commonplace and you find yourself forgetting more than just why you walked into a room, it may be time to consider that it’s more than just forgetfulness. Continue reading

Don’t Fall Victim to Common Scams Targeting Seniors

common senior scams

Today’s seniors and boomers were raised during a time when they were taught to be polite and trusting. Sadly, con artists tend to prey on those who are too trusting, thereby making the senior population a prime target for scams and fraud.

According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, not only is this age group more likely to be a victim of fraud – they also are less likely to report it . Some do not know how to report it and to whom, while others are embarrassed that friends and family will find out they were scammed. Continue reading

Right Time to Sell

Senior couple choose to sell their home

Housing makes up roughly 30 percent of a budget for retirees, which is why many seniors and boomers choose to sell an existing property as part of the downsizing process.  By moving to a smaller home, a retirement community or a senior-housing complex, they are better able to fund their retirement without breaking the bank.

Home stagers and real estate professionals can assist seniors and boomers with the process of preparing their home for the market. But getting the house ready for prospective buyers is just the first step in the process. Knowing when to put a home on the market is a vital piece of the puzzle for seniors and boomers who wish to sell their home quickly. Continue reading

Care Managers Help Navigate the Maze of Downsizing Options

Care managers consult with a senior

Downsizing can be a lot to manage on your own, and it is easy to become overwhelmed with the entire process. That is where a case manager may be able to help. Sometimes called care managers and care coordinators, these professionals specialize in providing a number of services designed to aid individuals and families facing complicated situations such as downsizing. They will work with you to help identify goals, needs and resources in the most cost-effective manner possible. Continue reading

Downsizing Disagreement? Employ the Right Tools to Negotiate a Deal

Seniors often work with counselors

Owning a home may be the quintessential American dream, but sometimes dreams need to be revised, making downsizing a necessity.

What happens when one spouse sees the need for downsizing, but the other disagrees? What happens if neither homeowner wishes to downsize, but the burden of assisting them in their current home is too great for their adult children?

Convincing a loved one to make a change is never an easy venture, but it can be accomplished when employing the right tools for the job. Continue reading

Aging in Place Not Always Best Option for the Golden Years

aging in place options

According to the AARP, most Americans over the age of 50 would prefer to “age in place.” In numerous studies conducted by the association, those surveyed indicated their desire to remain in their homes through the end stage of life. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines aging in place as the “ability to live in one’s own home and community safely, independently and comfortably, regardless of age, income or ability level.”

There is no shortage of vendors willing to help those who wish to age in place, including custom home builders and home-care providers with services designed to be delivered to your doorstep. Continue reading

Does Your Industry Fit?

Many industries offer professional help at the Upside of Downsizing conference

What would you say if I told you that over 50 different business and industry professionals play a role in the downsizing process?

From counselors and estate-planning attorneys, to resale stores and massage therapists, there are a lot of hands involved when people make the decision to downsize.

How, exactly, you might ask, does a massage therapist play a role in downsizing? As anyone who has been through the process can tell you, it’s a very physically and emotionally-draining experience. Massage is known for its stress-reducing abilities, so getting a massage before, during or after the process may help to keep your head in the game and stress at bay.

Resale stores often end up with items that downsizers do not wish to take with them for the move, but are too useful to be thrown in the trash. Counselors can help with the emotional aspects of downsizing, while estate-planning attorneys help to ensure your assets are protected.

Photographers and memory-book services also can be involved in the process, helping to capture memories of the home that will be left behind in the process. For many, it is a home in which they raised children or have lived for many years. Continue reading