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Senior Moving Checklist: How to Make Moving Elderly Parents Easier

Housing | November 21, 2022

A senior couplepacking up in their house after using a checklist for moving elderly parents.

Moving takes a lot of planning and effort no matter how old, but the process gets even more complicated when it’s time to move your elderly parents.

Whether your parents are moving into an assisted living facility, a nursing home, or some other space, it’s important to have a plan in place to make the transition as smooth as possible. People tend to accrue things as they get older – belongings, accounts, you name it – all of which take time to handle. Moving can also be a very emotional experience, especially if your parents are leaving the family home.

While moving is a lot of work, the good news is that there are ways that you can make the process simpler and less stressful for everyone involved. Use our handy moving checklist to keep the process on track – and check out our senior moving tips to help your parents throughout the experience.

A Checklist for Moving Elderly Parents

One of the best ways to simplify the moving process is to plan everything ahead of time. Once you’ve finalized where your parents are going to move, you’ll need to take several steps to get them ready for their new residence. Here’s a step-by-step checklist to help you move your elderly parents.

  • Pick a moving date
  • Research and hire a moving company or determine some other moving solution
  • Create a floor plan to figure out where to move your parent’s furniture and other belongings
  • Sell, donate or throw away any items that won’t make the move
  • Reserve a storage space if necessary
  • Complete USPS change of address process
  • Notify physicians of the move and get referrals for new physicians if your parents are moving far enough away
  • Notify key services about the change of address
    • Banks/credit card companies
    • Insurance
    • Social Security Administration
    • Tax bureaus (state and federal)
    • State vehicle registration
    • Pharmacy/medical supply delivery
  • Schedule to have utilities disconnected at the old residence, including:
    • Gas
    • Electric
    • Water
    • Phone/internet/cable
    • Garbage
  • Set up utilities at the new location (if necessary)
  • Acquire boxes, bubble wrap, and other moving supplies
  • Cancel/update the location for subscriptions
  • Get new checks or any other important documents/papers with the new address
  • Safely dispose of any hazardous waste (paint, gasoline, etc.)
  • Fill all prescriptions to cover the time of the move

4 Moving Tips for Seniors and Their Families

While a checklist can help you stay on track with each step of the moving process, there are other ways to simplify the whole ordeal. It’s important to limit the amount of work needed on moving day and make sure your parents feel good about the whole process. The following four tips can go a long way toward making your parents’ move a success.

Downsize before the move

As we mentioned earlier, older adults tend to accumulate a lot of belongings over time. The problem is that not all of those items need to be moved. Work with your parents to try and figure out if there is any furniture or other goods that don’t need to make the move. The following downsizing tips can help make this process a lot easier.

  •  Review each room to see what items your parents want to keep and what they can live without
  • Consider the layout of the new space to see if certain items won’t fit
  • Organize belongings into essential items, goods to donate or sell, and things to throw away
  • Pass down heirlooms or give away other items to friends and family
  • Hold an estate sale or some other event to help offset moving costs

Start earlier than you originally planned

The more time that you have, the less likely that you and your loved ones will be running up against the clock. If possible, try to bake in as much time between the decision to move and moving day. This gives everyone as much time as possible to tick off everything on the moving checklist.

Delegate duties

Moving your elderly parents doesn’t have to be a solo activity. While you can take the lead on the process, don’t be afraid to recruit family members to help spread the workload. For example, one person could be in charge of acquiring moving supplies and finding a storage space while another makes a list of all the possessions by room. This process will not only make moving easier, it can help bring the family together for a big life event.

Take it easy

Going through a move can be very stressful, so make sure to take some breaks and make sure that your parents are doing well throughout the process. Moving out of the family home and into a retirement community or some other location is a big change, and sometimes your loved ones need emotional support and encouragement.

Handling all the work can take a toll as well. Between the physical effort and the emotional impact of moving, you’ll want to make sure that your parents are comfortable with everything that is going on. This is especially true for any loved ones who may be suffering from dementia or moving into memory care. Don’t be afraid to slow things down every so often and make sure that everyone is comfortable before rushing through the process.

Make Moving a Stress-Free Experience

Every senior citizen deserves to live in comfort. By taking all the steps you can to prepare for moving your elderly parents, your loved ones can start the next stage of their lives on the right foot.

Of course, sometimes figuring out the right home for your parents is the hardest part. That’s why National Church Residences is here to help caregivers find the best senior living options for their loved ones. Find out which senior living options are in your area or give us a call at 844-465-6063 to take to one of our friendly staff members today.

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