Transitioning to Assisted Living: Smooth Moves for Seniors
Congratulations on deciding to move to an assisted living community! We know that making that decision can be challenging, but there is much to look forward to.
When it comes to making the transition to Phoenix assisted living, there are a few simple steps to put your mind at ease and make that transition smooth.
Involve Your Loved Ones
While this may have come at a loved one’s suggestion, the decision to move to assisted living is yours. In making that decision, having a conversation with your loved ones about your decision will help you express your needs and desires. It will also help you make decisions based on what level of support they will be able to provide.
One way your loved ones can help is to accompany you to look for a community that fits your needs, or they could even help you with the move. Make sure to set realistic expectations to avoid conflict and stress. Make a list of the things that they offer to help you with.
Making Your Wish List
The decision to move to assisted living probably stemmed from the need for change in your day-to-day life. Write down your non-negotiables, whether they are medical care, safety, or simply not having a big house to care for anymore. Your list of essentials will help you choose which Phoenix assisted living community will be right for you.
Next is to consider your future needs and what you like to do in your current lifestyle. Do you enjoy walking, hiking, golfing, playing tennis, hitting the gym, or taking fitness classes? Does reading a good book with a cup of tea sound like a delightful afternoon? Make a list of all you enjoy doing so you can look for these offerings in assisted living communities.
Finding the Right Place
Start with your list of non-negotiables. For example, do the facilities with assisted living have memory care if you need that in the future? If navigating Medicaid, does the assisted living community offer help or financial resources to assist in paying? What medical centers are near their location?
Now for the fun part: look at what communities offer the things you love. If you’re a hiker, look at the nearby parks and trails. Look to see if the neighborhood is walkable. Find out what stores and restaurants are nearby. See what classes and workshops they offer. Do they offer things like an on-site beauty parlor or barber shop and local transportation?
Most senior living communities offer a tour, and many pictures and floorplans are available on their websites. Spending an afternoon with your loved ones looking at homes will help you decide what feels right.
If you’re a couple, most communities have housing options that work well for residents and visitors. If the homes are furnished, they may still encourage you to bring some personal furnishings and decorations. Once you’ve narrowed your list, your decision to move will be easier.
Downsizing with Grace
This is often a hard step for most people with any move, so give yourself some time and space to do this. There are a lot of resources to help you in this process. Start with a list of items sorted into these categories to help you: Need, Want, Family, Sell, Donate.
First, determine what you need in your new home. For example, will your king-sized bedroom furniture set fit, or is it time to invest in an adjustable bed? What family photos or art pieces are important to you? Computers and iPads are great unless they’re outdated.
Next are things that aren’t necessary but you still want them; this could be a lamp, some bookshelves, or a coat rack. Based on what is already in your new home will help you determine what you want versus what you’ll need.
Family members and loved ones might want some sentimental and family history items. Giving these items to family and friends can be a great experience, especially if you have some younger folks who are just starting out and might need those items you have. Letting others choose is a great way to let go of those things you no longer need.
Many people sell items at garage sales and estate sales. A professional estate auction can be a better choice, depending on the value of the items. Many companies will either run the estate sale in your home or make an offer for the lot based on the value and haul all of it away. Be sure to involve your family members and loved ones in this process to ensure you’re not selling something they treasure and to ensure you’re getting a fair deal.
Donating is the last step in this process. Many charities will take cars, household items, clothing, and even food items. Habitat for Humanity is a great organization that will take many household items.
Planning for the Move
Most moving companies will want to see what they are to move before they give a quote on the move. Family members could help in packing. Figuring out what resources you need will help smooth out this process.
Once you have a firm move date, notify banks, doctors, and the postal service of your new address and when that takes effect. Telling your neighbors is also helpful so they’ll know to expect a moving truck and some extra noise that day. Assisted living is just that: assistance in your day-to-day living. By handling the things you no longer need to do, assisted living can be a whole new adventure. Here at BridgeWater Assisted Living, we value our role in helping you live your best life. Our Phoenix assisted living communities in Avondale, Deer Valley, and Midtown all offer tours to see how you can live in an affordable, stylish, and vibrant community.