by Luke Murray, Council of Neighbors
Moving close to a senior loved one is not a decision one should make in haste. In addition to the financial responsibility, the move will bring lifestyle changes for everyone involved. At Move-tastic!, we understand the challenges you can face when planning to relocate close to your loved ones. To help make the process easier, in this article we explore steps you can take to ensure a smooth move with minimal disruption in your personal and professional life.
Decide the Right Time to Move
According to research, long-distance caregivers in the United States travel all over to visit their senior loved ones—including flights or long car drives. This is manageable once in a while. However, traveling frequently will take a toll on your mental wellbeing and performance at work. If your loved one is unable to live independently anymore, resulting in frequent long trips, it is a strong sign to consider relocation.
Additionally, living far away can lead to increased stress levels. This stems from uncertainty regarding the senior’s well-being mainly due to their age and inability to handle tasks independently. While having frequent phone calls can help temporarily overcome stress, concerning thoughts can become overbearing. And that is a signal to start planning your move.
Your senior loved one’s health will be the prime factor for deciding how fast you should move. During your visits, pay attention to the following:
- Condition of their home
- Their physical movement compared to before
- Willingness to venture outdoors
- Frequency of doctor or hospital visits
If you notice a decrease in their quality of life, plan to move at the earliest. However, your loved one needs to accept the idea as well. You can expect resistance at first. Just try to get other members of the family involved and explain to them the need and benefits of the move.
Find the Right Home
When you start the process of moving close to a senior loved one, include them in shortlisting neighborhoods for relocation. Being locals, they can provide insights regarding the best areas. In addition, look for the following features:
- Bedrooms located on the first floor.
- Convert extra rooms into a wellness or rehabilitation room.
- Outdoor spaces are convenient for seniors to indulge in physical activities.
- Proximity to clinics and hospitals.
- Senior-friendly home features such as non-slip tiles, handrails in bathrooms, and tall beds.
To streamline your home search, delegate the responsibility to a real estate agent. Using their network and experience, they will provide you with a list of prospective options to visit
Once you have decided on moving close to a senior loved on, connect with your lender and get preapproved for a mortgage. This will provide you with a clear understanding of how much you’ll be able to afford. Proceeds from the sale of your loved one’s home will also contribute towards the purchase, allowing you greater freedom to decide the mortgage amount.
Prepare For Your Move
As the process of home buying can take between a few weeks to months for completion, plan to rent during this period. Once you close on the right house, plan on purchasing a home warranty. Because of everything that it covers, you’re going to want a home warranty when you need it. Then you won’t have to worry about something breaking in the home while you’re caring for your loved one.
Living in the area will give you time for adjusting to your new surroundings. Additionally, living locally will help overcome the challenge of 14-hour trips and be of assistance as and when your loved one needs it. If you need to look for a new job, these months will provide you the perfect time to understand the local job market, make connections and undergo a career change.
Relocation will come with its set of challenges. But when considering the long run it is a necessary decision you need to make resulting in a better standard of living for everyone involved.
Move-tastic! is more than a company. It’s a phenomenon, a community, and, dare we say, a movement. Move-tastic! is the brainchild of two ambitious triathletes who sought to earn non-brand-specific-electrolyte-beverage money while maintaining an intensive training regimen. We truly believe (because we know) that moving can actually be fun. And it is precisely that kind of experience we strive to provide each and every time we are given the opportunity. For more information, please visit our website or contact us today!