What do I do with all my stuff when downsizing?

by: Brenda Lyle

Senior living experts agree: The prospect of downsizing is the biggest obstacle for older adults considering a move. Just the thought of cleaning out a home of 30 years and moving into a smaller place is too daunting for most seniors to tackle. Luckily, help is out there! There is an entire category of professionals devoted to helping seniors downsize and move. 

A Seniors Real Estate Specialist® or SRES® is trained to understand the unique situations older clients face when buying and selling homes.  Barb Asinari, with Oceans Realty Florida, has helped many seniors solve downsizing dilemmas.

“Sorting through a lifetime of memories is overwhelming for most seniors. Downsizing is a major decision and some people find it so emotional that they choose to do nothing. But approached systematically, even the biggest ‘to do’ list can be managed. In the end, most of my clients say that downsizing was actually a relief.”

Realtors like Asinari can connect seniors to a network of trusted vendors. The National Association of Senior Move Managers began in 2002 as a network of businesses that help clients sort, organize, donate, move and reestablish their new home. Over 900 companies across the US are members of the organization!

Senior move managers develop a relocation plan of action in association with family members and service providers. They reduce the anxiety associated with moving and reduce (or eliminate) the potential for financial exploitation.

These businesses can come into your home and help you decide what to take and what to sell or give away.  Some also conduct estate sales so you can make a little extra cash from your treasures.  Then, they pack, move you and get you unpacked and organized in your new smaller home, whether it’s into a senior living community or down the block.

Ready to start the conversation about downsizing?  Call One Senior Place in Viera or Greater Orlando to find the help you need.

One Senior Place is a marketplace for resources and provider of information, advice, care and on-site services for seniors and their families. Questions for this column are answered by professionals in nursing, social work, care management and in-home care. Send questions to AskOSP@OneSeniorPlace.com, call 321-751-6771 or visit One Senior Place, The Experts in Aging at OneSeniorPlace.com. Brenda Lyle is a Certified Care Manager with One Senior Place, Greater Orlando.