For a majority of older adults, one of the biggest challenges of transitioning into senior living can be the process of downsizing from a home to an apartment. The idea of what to hold onto and what to get rid of can be daunting for most. Oftentimes, they are leaving the home that they’ve had for many years and it can be tough to determine what is most important to bring with them to their new, more humble home. Here is some advice to help make the process a bit easier.
The majority of senior living facilities will offer home visits as part of their sales process to help assess your current living situation in an effort to help make the transition as easy as possible. This is a process where a sales professional for the company visits the individual in their home to understand their ideal home environment which will help them determine if their independent living facilities may be a good fit for your lifestyle and can even help you determine what is and isn’t most important to take with you. SeniorHousing News notes that, “Home visits are critical to the sales process…they help create a relationship between the operator and the prospective resident.”
Choose What Is Most Important to You
When it comes to downsizing, it’s all about determining what items are the most important either for functionality reasons or sentimental ones. One good way to go about doing that may be to make the biggest decisions first and then work your way down to the smaller decisions based on what space is left. According to LifeStorage, “The best way to downsize is to go room by room, making the big decisions first and then the small ones.” The benefit of this method is that it helps make anything that will not be able to make the transition with you feel much smaller of a loss because you have already determined that it isn’t a big decision to keep it or to leave it.
When going through the transitioning and downsizing process, you don’t want to feel rushed. This can lead to feelings of regret as you don’t get to experience the sense of closure when parting with items that were once important to you. According to Caring Transitions, “When you envision retirement together, consider the best circumstances for enjoying the new stage in your life. Even if rightsizing isn’t an immediate requirement, it is important to begin a discussion about future needs, wants, and wishes together.” The more time you allow yourself to plan the process out, the less rushed and more satisfied you will feel with the decisions you made later.
Look for a Place that has a Homey Feel
One of the simplest ways to help alleviate feelings of leaving home is to find a place that feels like home. Whether it is in the look and feel of the apartment, the activities they offer, the atmosphere the staff provide, or the level of assistance that you feel you have been offered, there are a wide variety of signs that indicate a place will provide a homey feeling. Our Community Relations Counselor, Olga Stathakopoulos expressed how we do that by saying, “We aim to make our assisted living and memory care facilities provide a true sense of home to the individuals in our care. That is why we connect them to a variety of services for seniors who are looking to move into one of our long term care locations to help make the transition process as easy as possible for them.”