Specialized Moving Services That Help Seniors Downsize and Relocate
The process of downsizing and moving to a new home is a big job for anyone, but it can be especially overwhelming for seniors who are moving from a long-time residence filled with decade's worth of belongings and a lifetime of memories. Fortunately, there is a specialized service available today that can help make your mom's move a lot easier.
Senior Move Manager
To help your mom with her move, you should consider hiring a "senior move manager." These are trained organizers who assist older people with the challenges of relocating and can minimize the stress of this major transition by doing most of the work for you.
A senior move manager can help your mom pare down her belongings, decide what to take and what to dispose of, recommend charities for donations and help sell her unwanted items. They can even create a customized floor plan of her new home so your mom can visualize where her belongings will fit.
Senior move managers can also obtain estimates from moving companies, oversee the movers, arrange the move date, supervise the packing and unpacking and help set up her new home, have the house cleaned and just about anything you need related to her move.
If you want to do some of the work yourself, you can choose the services you want. For example, you may only want a move manager's help with downsizing and selling excess furniture and unwanted belongings but plan on doing the actual packing and moving yourself.
The cost of working with a senior move manager will vary depending on where you live, the services you want and size of the move. You can expect to pay somewhere between $60 and $125 per hour or more, not including the cost of movers.
How to Find One
To locate a senior move manager in your area, visit the National Association of Senior Move Managers website at NASMM.org or call 877-606-2766. The NASMM is a trade association with an accreditation program that requires its members to abide by a strict code of ethics that ensures integrity. They currently have around 1,000 members across the U.S.
You can also search for a senior move manager using Caring Transitions which is the largest senior relocation and transition services franchised company in the U.S. They currently have nearly 200 franchises throughout the country.
Before you hire one, be sure to ask for references from previous clients and check with the Better Business Bureau. Additionally, find out how many moves they have managed, get a written list of services and fees and make sure they are insured and bonded.
If you cannot find a senior move manager in your area, another option is to hire a certified professional organizer who specializes in downsizing and relocating. To find one, check the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals, which has a searchable database on its website at NAPO.net.
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living" book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization's official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.