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Embrace change, but get help with it

March 2012

Moving to a seniors’ residence is a big decision. There are numerous factors to consider, such as leaving a place you have grown accustomed to for many years, parting with belongings that have surrounded you forever, and recognizing and accepting that the change is part of a positive step; a new beginning and a continual journey.

Last year, we lived that experience with a close family member who lost a loved one after 50-plus years of marriage. The decision to move to a residence was a fairly easy one. The question was how to go about selecting the right place and how to deal with the monumental task of packing up and selling a house after 40 years. Big decisions: What to keep and what to give away? We learned that there were many resources available to make this transition an easier one.

The first thing I recommend when shopping for a residence is to budget prior to making the move. Typically the proceeds from the sale of your house and other accumulated assets, plus your pensions need to be factored into your decision. Shop around for a residence. Give them a test run. Many residences will allow you to move in temporarily to try their facilities. Location, surroundings, size of the unit, activities, friends, security, and most importantly the menu will all determine which one is for you.

Once you have made your choice, the rest will fall into place.

I strongly recommend using an interior decorator to help you visualize the move. Most residences have a designer they work with who knows how to put the apartments together with your existing furniture. They come in and measure all your furniture to determine what will fit and how it is to be placed in your new surroundings. They will even hang all your pictures and photos. In addition, there are services that can pack and unpack your belongings so when you arrive in your new surroundings, it is as if you have lived there for a long time.

There are many highly reputable moving companies that specialize in moving seniors.

Finally, once moved in, take advantage of all the facilities the residence has to offer. Chances are you will make new friends and try new activities that you would not even have considered doing in the past.

Life is about change: adapting, evolving and enjoying.



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