Thanks for visiting my blog. Hope you find some helpful hints for organizing your time and space. My passions are to help you make home a refuge instead of a crisis center, and to help you function in peace rather than chaos - at home or at work. I have switched my main blog to 1-2-3 ... Get Organized on WordPress, so please visit me there.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Downsizing - Factors to Consider when Choosing a New Residence

Good morning! Here's another section on our topic on downsizing. Pass this along to your parents or others if you're not ready for downsizing yet.

Factors to Consider
when Choosing a New Residence:

Consider your financial resources. Your financial resources will be one factor in determining the type of housing you will contemplate.

There is a wide range in the cost of retirement communities. Some require hefty down payments while others have minimal deposits. Monthly charges also vary. Other retirement facilities consist of rental units.

In some areas of the country, there are publications or websites which compare local retirement facilities. Ask the senior citizen center or your local library if they exist in your area. The following link lists retirement facilities: http://www.seniorhousingnet.com/seniors/search/matchlist.jhtml.

Consider location. Do you want to continue living in your current area? Do you need to be closer to family if they are not nearby?

Staying in your current area means being near your friends, shopping, church, etc. However, if you have no family in the area, it will be harder for them to visit or monitor your health care should they need to in the future.

My husband’s parents considered moving to Florida. We told them that if they did, we would probably only get to see them once or twice a year. Thankfully, they chose a retirement community in Pennsylvania, so we can see them every other month.

We have other friends who moved to Florida and then moved back to their home area when their health failed or they missed their families.

Consider your interests. If you are an avid golfer, you may want to consider a community with a golf course, for example. If you follow the arts, you may want to locate in an area accessible to such events. However, if being in a natural, peaceful setting is important to you, a rural location may be preferable.

Consider the timing. It is much easier to make a move at your leisure rather than when a crisis occurs. You have time to make the choices you want to make, with a clear mind. You may find it helpful to create time lines and target dates to keep focused.

I had a client who was experiencing memory loss while we were helping her downsize into a retirement facility. Her husband was in the hospital. In the middle of the move, he died. You don’t want to wait until it’s a hardship for you to make a necessary move.

Consider the help you may need. Any move is tremendously stressful! And moving from your long-time residence is even more so. So much so that losing a spouse is the only other event more stressful, according to stress studies.

Many times, the thought of moving is overwhelming because of the physical and emotional demands placed upon you. If you have family or friends willing to help, accept their offer, if you like.

Downsizing professionals reduce the stress of downsizing by walking with you through the steps to a successful relocation - sorting, making a floor plan, packing, unpacking and much more.

I had one client who thought she had downsized before moving into her retirement community. She called me for help. When I knocked on her door and she said, “come in,” all I could see was her foot – she was surrounded by wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling boxes!

So ... don't be afraid to get help! I'll talk more about how to find help next time.

Questions about downsizing? If you receive this via email, ask here.

Related topics:

The Advantages of Downsizing
Residential Options when You Downsize
It's a Great Time to Hire a Mover