Top Tips to Make Sure the Move is Stress-Free.
Downsizing for any reason can be a taxing endeavor. There are a number of steps in the process that, if not completed in the right order, can end up causing more stress than necessary. In fact, knowing which steps to take and in which order is one of the informational sessions we present at each one of our Upside of Downsizing conferences.
Sometimes downsizing involves moving, and not just from one residence to another, or from one town to another in your home state. It can involve relocating to an entirely new state, which adds another column of items to your “to do” list. Continue reading
How to Downsize with Alzheimer’s in the Mix.
We have said it before, and you will likely hear us say it many more times: downsizing is taxing on the body, mind and spirit. More than just the physical aspects of sorting, donating, discarding and packing, downsizing takes an emotional toll on everyone involved in the process.
The emotional stress of downsizing can be triggered by memories of the items you are sorting, attachment to a home where you may have raised a family and made many memories, and the echoes in the back of your mind whispering that change can be scary, even if you are otherwise looking forward to the next stage in your life.
All the emotions associated with the downsizing process can be complicated further if one of the seniors involved is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. Persons with Alzheimer’s disease may already feel anxious or agitated, which can worsen if they are taken from a familiar environment and placed in a new one. So, when downsizing in this kind of situation, there are certain tips and tools that can make the transition smoother for not only the person with Alzheimer’s, but also for others who are involved in the process. Continue reading
Top Tips for using Placement Agencies.
In August 2015, we blogged about care managers and their role in assisting seniors and boomers as they navigate through the maze of downsizing options. Care managers, who also are referred to as case managers and are coordinators, are professionals who specialize in providing a number of services related to the downsizing process.
Care managers can be extremely helpful; however, their services are not free. Sometimes, Medicaid or Medicare will pay for a case manager’s services, but most often, they do not. It is more likely that the client will pay out of pocket for the services, which can range in cost. Some care managers charge a flat fee for their services, while others charge an hourly rate.
Another option for seniors and boomers who need assistance is a placement agency.
Knowing When to Downsize
Before we discuss the details of what a placement agency is and how to select a reputable one to work with, a quick refresher on knowing when to downsize is in order. Continue reading
Know who to Call When You’re in Need.
The idea of downsizing can be overwhelming for some seniors and boomers. Just thinking about the process can cause anxiety and sometimes depression. Sorting, categorizing and compartmentalizing a lifetime worth of belongings is a challenging endeavor. While some find it physically draining, others may find it emotionally taxing as well.
It is why at all of our Upside of Downsizing conferences, we provide access to, and information about, the kinds of professionals who can help assist seniors and boomers through every step of the downsizing process. This includes mental health professionals and care managers who can help downsizers cope with the emotional side of things.
Whether support is in the form of therapy, medication or assistance navigating the many senior living options available when downsizing, it’s important to make sure you are seeking assistance from the right professional. Let’s discuss the kinds of professionals available and the specialties for each to help narrow down the right person for the job. Continue reading
Practical Tips for Unpacking Your New Space.
For the last couple of weeks, we have been discussing the best ways to pack up your belongings and get them to their new destination after making the decision to downsize. This week, we want to provide some practical tips for unpacking the moving van and organizing your new space so you aren’t living out of boxes for months.
While it is true that the decluttering and packing up of the belongings that will be making the move with you is a difficult and time-consuming process, unpacking and arranging your new space can be just as challenging without a little forethought.
Unpacking Rule #1 – Visualize and Assign a Purpose to the Space
Before moving day, visit your new home and make a list of every room and space in it. Don’t forget to include rooms like the bathroom, hallways, the basement and all storage areas (closets, pantries). After you record each space in your new home, write the purpose for each of those spaces next to it on the list. If you are moving into a studio-style apartment, this process is going to look a bit different. Instead of assigning a purpose to each room, assign a purpose to each area of the studio. Continue reading
Top 5 Tips for Self Movers.
In our blog last week, we discussed strategies for moving day – one of the key parts of the downsizing process. When executed poorly, moving can cause unnecessary and unwanted stress for seniors and boomers.
It can be difficult enough if using professional movers and move managers to assist during this phase of downsizing; but for those who choose to be self movers, there are added challenges if a solid plan is not in place. We are not big fans of trying to move yourself for many reasons, but we do realize that for some seniors and boomers, budgetary constraints may make moving themselves necessary.
If your moving budget is limited, or you simply feel confident in your own ability to get your things moved to your new retirement destination on your own, we’ll discuss the top five ways to make the process as smooth and stress-free as possible.
Tip #1 – Plan, Plan, and Plan Some More
Would you leave for a weeklong vacation in some far-off tropical paradise without planning in advance? The answer is most likely no, especially if you want to have plane tickets and hotels in which to stay when you arrive. Moving day should be no different, especially when doing the work yourself. Continue reading
Three Steps for Surviving the Moving Process.
Over the years, while interacting with attendees at our Upside of Downsizing conferences, we have been told that the process of de-cluttering and organizing a home can be the most stressful and time-consuming part of downsizing. Sorting, donating and eliminating a lifetime worth of possessions can be overwhelming for individuals downsizing for the first time. It is why the Eight-Step Checklist we created at the Upside of Downsizing is so important to follow.
Once the de-cluttering phase is over, and individuals have placed their homes on the market and identified where they will be moving, the home stretch of downsizing is finally in sight. Moving day is next on the agenda, and we have some tips to help make moving day a success.
Step #1 – Hire a Professional
Seniors who are on a budget may be concerned that hiring professionals to help in the downsizing process will be a budget buster for them. But failing to get the help of a professional when it is warranted can end up costing downsizers a lot more money in the long run. Continue reading
An Eye-Opening Revelation on Downsizing.
Since 2011, Upside of Downsizing has been helping boomers and seniors gain freedom by downsizing. We have provided helpful ideas and insight about how to make the transition to a healthier and more manageable living environment both smooth and successful.
We impress upon the guests at our conferences the importance of taking the right steps from start to finish and receiving the necessary assistance from reputable professionals to successfully walk them through the process. Those who have attended our conferences know that Jerry and I also have been through the downsizing process since we started the Upside of Downsizing.
Although we’ve been through the process ourselves, it wasn’t until a recent cross-country trip – perpetuated by the desire to attend a family wedding and ending with a change in plans and return route to attend a family funeral in Colorado – that we experienced an extreme version of the downsizing process. The experience was a real eye-opener for both of us in more ways than one. Continue reading
The Harsh Truth About Seasonal Maintenance and Repairs.
September 22nd brought with it the official end to the summer of 2016. Before we know it, the ground will be covered with falling leaves and the air will be filled with the smells of autumn.
According to YouGov.com, fall is the favorite season for most Americans, ranking slightly higher than summer by those included in the poll. The weather is just right – not too hot, not too cold. In some parts of the country, the changing fall foliage is mesmerizing, with trees bursting into shades of red, orange and yellow.
While fall is full of beauty and wonder, it also can be an incredibly stressful time for seniors and boomers struggling to keep up with the demands of home ownership. Fall is the time of year when seasonal home repairs and routine maintenance are the most demanding in some parts of the country. For some, the demands are not only a drain on the monthly budget, but also can have a negative effect on one’s physical health and well being. Continue reading
How to Stop Conflict Before it Starts.
Downsizing a home can be a very stressful event for seniors and boomers, especially if the process must be undertaken due to an illness or injury. There is the emotional aspect of leaving behind a home where a life had been built. There also are the financial and physical aspects of downsizing, which involve selling an existing home to pay for the move and getting everything packed up and ready to go.
If a home requires any repairs or improvements to ready it for the market, it can be an added step that is likely to cause family discord if not handled properly. It can be expensive to hire contractors to complete work if friends or family members are able to do it. Continue reading