The process of moving parents out of their home and into a new living situation can be tough on everyone involved. Whether they are moving to a smaller home, an assisted-living facility, or a new area, your parents probably need a helping hand to get through the process. It is hard to uproot and move somewhere new when you have lived in the same house for years or decades. Here are some helpful tips to prepare you and your family for selling your parents’ home.
Decluttering by Sorting
Most people tend to have a lot more things than they need or use. Clutter has a way of accumulating over the years. When helping your parents get ready to move, start by getting rid of things they no longer need. Decluttering will make packing your parents’ home and moving much simpler. Ask your parents to sort their things into four distinct boxes:
Picture frames, letters, mementos, and other items in this box have sentimental value for your parents. They will most likely not want to part with these things under any circumstances. Extra care should be taken when packaging and transporting these items. And if you don’t know the significance of all these items, now is the perfect time to ask.
Things to Keep
These items may not have emotional value, but they are functional and practical things that are used regularly. This box may include items such as clothes, kitchen utensils, and home decorations.
Valuable Things to Sell
If your parents have valuable things such as antique furniture or china that they are not using, sell them! The money can be put toward moving expenses. Take time to research the market value of these items and the best ways to sell them.
Things to Donate or Put in a Yard Sale
Anything else that is no longer needed can be put aside for a yard sale or donated to a local charity. Just because they don’t have a need for it doesn’t mean they can’t benefit someone else.
While sorting through your parents’ belongings, throw out anything that is broken or worn out. Promptly deal with any items that are being sold or given away so you have plenty of space for packing your parents’ home. While packing, clearly label each box so you know exactly what is inside.
Learn More: Moving Checklist: Organizing for your Move
Hiring a Moving Manager
Moving can be a challenging process for anyone. Hiring a moving manager is one way to make the experience easier for your parents. The moving manager will be there to assist every step of the way—from planning and making preparations for the move to unpacking and getting settled in. He or she can offer recommendations for movers, realtors, and other contractors. The manager will coordinate all the details to ensure that your parents’ big moving day goes as smoothly as possible.
Packing When Moving to an Assisted-Living Facility
If your parents are moving to an assisted-living facility, there are two things to keep in mind while packing. First, their new place will likely be much smaller than their current residence. Downsizing is a top priority in this situation. Pick only the most important things to keep in order to reduce clutter in their new home.
Lastly, try to keep familiar things like furniture and decorative objects that will help re-create the ambiance of their former home. Fill the space with your parents’ favorite picture frames, artwork, and memorabilia to make them feel as much at home as possible.
Learn More: Moving Mistakes to Avoid
The moving process should start with a conversation. While the reasons for the move may be clear to you, the decision will no doubt be difficult and emotional for your parents. Come to the conversation prepared with a list of the benefits of moving and information about the new location. Be ready to talk, but be willing to listen as well.
You might be in a hurry when selling your parents’ home, but try to be patient. Allow plenty of time for sorting and organizing belongings, keeping in mind that your parents will be dealing with memories and all the emotions that go along with them.
Whether you have relatives or professionals helping with the move, be sure that everyone knows what needs to be done. Make a list of tasks, including packing, cleaning, making repairs, and moving items. Assign everyone a task and check off each project as it’s completed. Staying organized will keep you on track.
Clean and Repair
Often, when people have lived in a house for a long time, they’ve put off some upkeep projects. This is the time to address them. Go room by room and make a checklist of areas to inspect, repair, and clean before the house is put up for sale. This will speed up the selling process and help take some of the stress off of you.
Get Help When You Need It
Anyone who has sold a home and moved knows that it’s no small task. Selling your parents’ home will likely be quite an involved process. Get relatives to help out. They will not only keep things moving along but can make your parents more comfortable, too.
Your parents’ home may have been the height of style when they moved in, but if they’ve been there a while, it may be a bit dated. In some rooms, a fresh coat of neutral paint can make a big difference. In other areas, larger updates like swapping out furniture or replacing appliances can give the home an updated look that will appeal to buyers.
When putting the house on the market, think with your head and not with your heart. Your family’s memories of the home can easily cloud your judgment, so it’s important to be smart when it comes to staging, pricing, and selling the home. Get an expert opinion and find a realtor that you trust to help you along the way.
Inheriting Your Parents’ Home
Inheriting a house after the moving or passing of a loved one can raise both financial and emotional issues and requires many decisions. You should always take your time before deciding how to move forward. If the inheritance is yours alone, you can choose to live in the house, sell it, or rent it. The decision becomes a little more complicated if you are sharing the inheritance with someone else.
When you inherit a house, you don’t just inherit a structure—you inherit all the emotions and sentiments attached to it. Under these circumstances, it might be a good idea to seek professional guidance from real estate professionals who understand all the details involved and can think objectively.
Read More: Things to Consider When You Inherit a House