Helping the Elderly Downsize

Leaving the family home or a house you have lived in for many years is not easy by any standards. Being in a situation where you must move to a smaller residence may force you into parting with your treasures. The things you have become familiar with and worked hard for over the years… yes, those things, your treasures are important to you.

Atlanta Seniors Real Estate Team work with services that are dedicated to helping older Americans downsize in a systematic and stress free manner.

“You ask yourself what you want to keep, and the answer is ‘everything,’ ” said Dr. Harrison-Ross, who turns 80 next month. “It’s an emotional roller coaster that takes a toll on you. It’s very tiring.

“I thought I could get down to the bare essence of things myself,” she said. “But that proved to be very difficult, much more than I had expected.”

Her solution: Dr. Harrison-Ross hired a senior move manager.

Moving is stressful at any age, but for those who have lived in one place for many years, getting rid of things that have accumulated over decades is a large barrier to overcome.

As people get older, said David J. Ekerdt, a professor of sociology and gerontology at the University of Kansas, cognitive and physical issues hamper divestment. “It’s also a very emotional task. It’s hard to quantify the attachment one has to certain possessions,” he said, adding that the probability of people divesting themselves of their belongings decreases each decade after age 50.

“You ask yourself what you want to keep, and the answer is ‘everything,’” said Dr. Harrison-Ross, who turns 80 next month. Credit Emon Hassan for The New York Times“You ask yourself what you want to keep, and the answer is ‘everything,’” said Dr. Harrison-Ross, who turns 80 next month. Photo Credit: Emon Hassan for The New York Times

Senior move managers specialize in the issues that comes with downsizing, including donating and selling items and hiring movers. In New York, these managers maneuver through the often stringent moving and trash-disposal rules adopted by co-ops and condominium buildings. They also deal with out-of-town family members who may want items sent to them. They pack and unpack; they call the cable company. Most also help with decluttering and organizing the homes of seniors who wish to stay put.

Click here to read more about how NASMM can help you or your family member to downsize their belongings.

Judith Kahn

Judith Kahn, who owns Judith Moves You, oversees a client’s move into a new apartment. Photo Credit: Emon Hassan for The New York Times

 

Sources:

NASMM Article Helping the Elderly Downsize

National Association of Senior Move Managers. Your Guide to Stress-Free Rightsizing and Relocation 

National Association of REALTORS. SRES