At some point, many aging adults will come to an absolute cognizance that their living space exceeds their needs. Downsizing to a space that is suitable for their needs brings many advantages for the elderly. Many elderly live in homes with logistics that may no longer be adaptable and can pose a danger such as stairs, outdated bathrooms, or long walkways. Moving to a single-level space can enable easy access and can reduce the risks of fall-related injuries. A smaller space adapted to the necessity of the elderly can simplify their life with lesser maintenance, which means more time to enjoy their retirement life. The elderly with chronic conditions may also benefit from relocating nearer to their doctor or community living where there is healthcare assistance.
Moving out of the comfort zone can be physically and mentally stressful for our elderly. Despite that, downsizing can make a profound change to our elderly’s quality of life. Use the following downsizing tips to make the challenging bittersweet process smoother for our elderly.
This can be an intense life change, so be sure to give the process plenty of time and attention. Spending sufficient time will allow our elderly to move at a comfortable pace, enjoy the process and the memories that will inevitably evoke.
Spend adequate time to visit, shortlist and decide the new home. Rushing through the process might cause our elderly unnecessary anxiety and result in poor decision-making. The location, setup, size, and facilities are all important factors to consider. Whether the new space would be a house, apartment, or a senior living community, try to visualize how the furniture and belongings will fit. Taking notes on things to be replaced due to a smaller space will help in the decluttering process.
Dividing the house into smaller manageable areas will prevent the feeling of being overwhelmed. Start with smaller areas and rooms with minimum emotional attachments, like the laundry room or linen closet. Attics and basements are generally the toughest room to tackle as they are rather uncomfortable spaces and tend to accumulate clutter. If your loved one is having a hard time deciding what to keep, ask them if it is something they have used in the past twelve months. If not, only keep it if it fulfills an emotional need.
Donate and Giveaway
It is a good feeling when your belongings have a second life and can make somebody happy. Wherever possible, donate serviceable items to children, friends, or organizations. Alternatively, it is a good time to give away treasured belongings to their respective heirs now. This will lessen the moving load and also the receivers would be happy to receive their gifts.
Ask for Help
At any point, if the project becomes overwhelming, hire professional moving companies. Some moving companies specialize in providing assistance to the elderly. Friends and family would also be glad to participate in this memorable event.
Finally, look for the beatitude in the process. Focus on the advantages of downsizing and the exciting new environment and it will breeze through the process of downsizing.