Senior relocation can seem like an overwhelming process. When caring for your loved one, sorting through their possessions can not only be daunting, but emotional as well. Here is a guide on what to bring to their new home and what items can be donated.
What to Pack:
1. Comfort and Familiarity
Often, moving into a new space can bring daunting unknowns for seniors—from financial worries, new social situations, to what meals will look like. Packing things that communicate comfort and familiarity, like a favorite painting or bedspread from their original home, will give them a sense of stability in a new environment.
2. Items That Are Used Often
If certain objects were used daily or weekly before moving, there is no reason to stop your loved ones from using them after their transition. Things like a game, radio, favorite book, or religious item could be essential to their lifestyle, and should not be forgotten in the chaos of moving. You could even pack them in a box labeled “open first” (along with other essentials) to make sure life goes on as normal—even when some boxes remain packed in the closet.
3. Sentimental Objects
Things like picture albums, family heirloom jewelry, and other sentimental belongings saved over the years will add a special touch to a new assisted living situation. Even though your loved ones might not be able to achieve the same level of activity, they will be able to relive fond memories through the inspiration of photographs or objects. They’ll often love sharing things about their family and friends to other residents as a way to connect and make friends!
What to Leave:
1. Large Scale Items
When loved ones are moving into an independent or assisted living facility, they often have less than 25% of the space they had living on their own. Selling or donating large pieces of furniture and cutting possessions down to the essentials allows breathing room in these spaces. Make sure to check with your facility to know ahead of time what large items are provided for you and which you might need to bring yourself.
2. Abundant Collections
Although it is important for retired adults to have hobbies to keep them occupied, bringing an abundance of books, blankets, clothing, or snow globes will make an assisted living space feel cluttered and cramped. Even if their old home fit everything fine, ask your loved one to pick one of two favorites to keep with them and donate the rest.
3. Duplicates of Anything
Saving space in independent or assisted living is essential; so, while sorting through things like kitchen accessories and cleaning items, make sure you only keep one of each. Of course, if your mother is prone to baking triple layer cakes once a week, don’t limit her by keeping only one of her cake pans; keep the personality and habits of your own family member in mind, and apply this generally to what fits them best.
For more information on senior relocation, please visit www.harmonymoves.com.