Moving Management: Organizational Tips for Staging A Home to Sell

staging a home for sale is part of the tasks a clear path executes through is senior move management processIf selling your home is on the horizon, here are some moving management and organizational tips to help you stage for a quick and successful sale.

Moving can be a stressful process, particularly when it comes to selling a home. With summer on the horizon and so many looking for new homes across the country, staging has become more important than ever. When potential buyers enter a home or virtually tour photos on a real estate listing platform, they not only want to see a future there, but they also want to be sure that the space is clean and organized. A tidy home can make it sell for more money as well as attract more buyers. While hiring a moving manager or home organizing services can take some of the work off your plate, there are ways you can both organize and show off the space yourself, too. 

Organize the exterior 

The first impressions of most homes on the market come from the outside, which makes a neat, attractive exterior all the more important. Any red flags on the outside of the home can send a buyer in the other direction before even entering the house. That said, fresh landscaping, flowers, groomed trees, and any paint touch-ups can make a home look brand new. This will also hint to buyers how dedicated you’ve been in terms of maintenance, inside and out. Outdoor furniture, a freshly sealed driveway, or an updated porch can help the home sell faster and for more money. 

Highlight home office space

to help declutter a home office use the professionals at a clear pathIn this new age of remote work, home offices have become staples to everyday life for many. Creating a designated, productive workspace can help a buyer who works from home see their lifestyle fitting with the house. Keep in mind that professionals prefer certain aspects of a home office, like natural lighting, storage space, and distance from heavily trafficked areas of the house. You can also stage a multifunctional space that can serve as a home office, craft room, laundry room, or spare bedroom. 

Cut back on furniture

Believe it or not, some of a home’s most valued furniture pieces may not be beneficial throughout the staging process. Extra end tables, coffee tables, or chairs can make the space look cluttered and claustrophobic. Remove these to open up the space. Avoid putting furniture in front of focal points like fireplaces or built-ins so they’re easily visible and accessible. When choosing which pieces to keep or stow away, think about buyers walking through the home and how easy the space is to tour. 

Coordinate closet space

Organized closet space is a high priority for many buyers. Before they tour the bedrooms, remove any unnecessary articles of clothing and other clutter to make the closet appear larger. Add shelving where necessary to maximize the space, and stage with storage bins or compartments that show visitors how it can be efficiently organized. Shoe racks, drawers, and over-the-door storage can also help buyers see how much of their belongings they can store in the closet. Don’t forget to keep the home well-ventilated for great air quality and a fresh aroma for in-person tours.

Deep clean

A tidy home isn’t as effective without a deep clean. A major factor that turns buyers away from homes for sale is cleanliness. It indicates how well you tend to the home, and is instrumental in the visitors’ experience. Cleaning every square inch of the home is vital before allowing a home to be photographed or toured in person. Dust or scrub every square inch from the floor to the ceiling so that buyers will have no critiques. Also remember that pets, their toys, or their furniture can store some unpleasant smells that a handful of buyers will disapprove of, so be sure to take those out of the house and eliminate any pesky pet odors.

De-personalize 

While staging, be sure to reduce the amount of personal items in the home. Family photos, mementos, art projects, personal hygiene items, andstaging a home is one of the task that can be handled by A Clear Path as an A+ accredited by NASMM senior move manager clothes can all add to a cluttered home. Not only that, but having these items visible can make it very difficult for buyers to imagine the home as their own and connect to the space. Instead, fill some of the space with neutral decor, books, plants, etc. Arrange any built-in storage, shelving, or wall space with items that illustrate how the space can be used, while leaving it a blank canvas for potential buyers.

Hire a professional

If you’re inexperienced when it comes to moving, thankfully, there are a number of moving and organization experts that can make the transition smoother every step of the way. To make the process easier, here are some examples of professional services you can use:

  • Packing and unpacking services: carefully packing items, trash removal, delivering packing boxes and materials, etc. 
  • Senior moving specialist: guiding your downsizing/transition while catering to the special needs of your senior loved one
  • Estate clearing: providing itemized lists of keepsakes, shipping items to family members, selling valuable pieces, etc.
  • Virtual organizers: online sessions with organization experts to tackle your home one room at a time

Conclusion

Selling your home doesn’t mean simply listing it on the market and hoping for the best. It takes a lot of thought and hard work throughout the staging process. Maintain an organized home, take advantage of experts, and consider some of these organizational tips for an efficient home sale.

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Photo Credits: Photo by Bench Accounting on Unsplash; Photo by Bench Accounting on Unsplash; Photo by Jason Briscoe on Unsplash

Home Organizing for Downsizing Homeowners

Downsizing is always about boxes, packing them and then unpacking them. Pack by room is the best.

Downsizing homeowners are often overwhelmed by the stresses of moving as well as everything involved in packing up their belongings and getting the house ready for their buyer. We know how difficult it can be to manage everything at once, which is why we’ve put together this handy article to make things easier for you!

Consider home organizing services

There is so much to do when moving house, and sometimes we all need a helping hand to get things going. If you’re struggling to get your house packed up or aren’t able to move furniture as easily as you’d hoped, then looking into home organizing services could be the right step for you. Generally, these services offer you –

  • Staging support, which will involve your house being decluttered and organized to entice viewers
  • Moving materials provided to keep your items safe in transit and well-organized
  • Services to both donate or throw away items that you no longer need or want
  • A guarantee that your items are packed carefully
  • Help and support contacting any other services that you may need. 

This can be a much easier approach than doing everything of your own accord and can also save you a lot of time too, letting you focus on the other aspects of your move!

Decluttering

A lot of homeowners like to declutter themselves, especially if a lot of the items that you own are sentimental. It can be a difficult task but with the right approach you can make it easier for yourself. There are a few key things to remember when you’re looking to declutter

  • Start small:
    You may think that you have to declutter the whole house in one weekend but giving yourself more time and taking the pressure off will lead to much better results. A great way to get started is to focus on one area at a time, such as under the stairs or a junk drawer in the kitchen. Small achievements help you stay on track and will keep you motivated, and in no time, you’ll be seeing great results!
  • Before and after photos:
    It can be easy to lose sight of your progress and see just how far you’ve come, which is often where people will give up on their decluttering journey and start to struggle. Taking before and after photos is a wonderful way to remind you of all of the work that you’ve done and help keep you focused. 
  • Date checking:
    We’re all guilty of keeping things longer than we probably should, and whether it’s cosmetic products, toiletries, or dried food, most households will have a good amount that they can get rid of. Most cosmetics and toiletries have a shelf life of 6-18 months, so check your items and get rid of anything out of date. Empty your food cupboards and you’ll likely find things at the back that you’ve forgotten about that have been there for several years, which you can get rid of. 
  • Empty tables:
    Flat surfaces such as shelving, small tables or cabinets are incredibly easy to clutter, and so focusing on them is a great way to declutter. Try and keep them as empty as possible, and if this feels too bare to you, you can try the rule of 3. This means that you can only have 3 things on any surface (apart from books on bookshelves!) which keep things clear while still allowing you to have your items on display. 

Decluttering is perfect for a fresh start when you downsize and benefits you in more way than one – it can also help you sell your house fast as it will leave your home more organized and more attractive to your viewers. 

  • Utilize storage

It can be incredibly difficult to let go of your belongings, especially if they have been in your family for a long time and are meaningful to you. When you downsize, generally, you’ll be moving somewhere smaller so you’re unable to take all of your belongings with you which is why decluttering is such a popular option. If, however, you’re finding that you can’t part with a lot of your items, you can decide to –

  • Put them in storage and give yourself some time to detach from them before you sort through to declutter
  • Gift them to family and friends. 

Gifting things to people you know is a popular option for those homeowners who know that they no longer have space but want to see them being used and appreciated as they did themselves. 

planning properly is a key reason to hire a professional organizer for downsizing tasks.Make a floorplan 

Downsizing to a smaller home will mean that you’ll likely need to reconsider your furniture and get rid of some things, especially if you’re going to have less bedrooms than you do currently. Some downsizers only realize this as they’re moving in which adds more pressure to the day and can cause a lot of problems. 

Making a floorplan of your new place and outlining where your furniture will go and what will fit will help you plan ahead and give you time to either sell it or rehome it before moving day. You should also measure them too so you know that they will fit where you’re planning to avoid any problems on the day. 

Doing this will show you what you can take with you and what you won’t have space for, helping you stay organized. 

Organizing your home can be incredibly difficult, especially combined with the stresses of moving, but following these steps will give you an easier moving day and help reduce the chances of unexpected problems when moving day comes around.

 

Using a Checklist before downsizing will create an easier less stressful move

Should You Hire Unpacking Services After the Move

moving companies can help wiht a move, but a certified move manager can make sure the move is done properly

Having good organizational skills may come in very handy in a lot of life situations. If you are an organized person, you may excel at your workplace or keep a tidy house, especially if you have children or pets. But, being organized doesn’t mean that you will always be on top of every situation life throws at you. One of those life occurrences is certainly relocation. Usually, people perceive relocation as a stressful period in life; now, even more than ever, with the busy schedule we all keep. That is why relocation specialists have their work cut out for them. The fact is that some of you don’t have the time or the money to go through the moving process by yourself, so hiring a move manager is the right choice. Know that they offer all possible services you can think of and are moving-related: packing, loading, unloading, and unpacking services, storage, you name it.

Which type of services is fundamental when opting for professional move management?

Some excellent moving companies offer a full pack of services that don’t just include the loading, transportation, and unloading of your belongings and household items. Their teams also do your packing, storage, and unpacking if needed. If you add time management and home organizing services to the list, you will have a somewhat clear picture of what senior move managers have in their job description. Suppose you are a working mum of two, relocating for business across the country. In this scenario, your exceptional organizational skills are good to have. Still, you may lack time and focus because of all the things you must think about and care about in the process. If your relocation circumstances are like the above scenario, a good option is to hire professional help to assist you in the moving project. Hired professionals can help you save time, and with good budgeting also money. 

Busy parents with small children can benefit from professional move management.

 

What can you expect after moving day?

Your moving day is approaching, and you feel you have done everything right. Suppose you opted for hiring a senior moving manager and his team to help you through this endeavor. Besides, imagine that they also did your home inventories and left you a clear home on the moving day. But what happens when you arrive at your new house or apartment? What about all the boxes and wrap-upped furniture? Firstly, take a deep breath and acknowledge that there are many things that need to be done. It surely would be good to have someone navigate you through the unpacking process so you have more time to focus on your new job, your kids’ new school, or meeting the new neighborhood. That is why it would be beneficial to plan unpacking services after the move if the budget allows you to do so. For a more detailed outlook on the matter, look up professional organizing and what it involves.

moving day can add stress to anybody's day, but using certified move managers can eliminate the stressList of tasks included in professional unpacking services

Depending on your budget and your requirements, you can opt for full service or partial unpacking. Maybe you need assistance only with one room, your library, or your closet. Then, it would be wise to choose partial organizing services. On the other hand, if you need help with organizing your whole house after moving day, hiring professionals will entail the following:

  • Unwrapping all the furniture and appliances
  • Unpacking all the boxes with other household items
  • Making an inventory of every item
  • Assembly of furniture if needed
  • Organization of kitchen, bedroom, closet, bathroom, or other rooms
  • Putting all items in place
  • Clean up, removal of all packaging material 

To make this process go smoothly, it is essential to brief the team about your requirements. Give clear and concise input on where you would like your things to go. Most (un)packers will professionally do their job with little or no bother to the owner.

Does it cost a lot to have relocation specialists help you settle?

One of the questions you will think a lot about is how much it all costs. Well, it depends. Firstly, it depends on the size of your home. It is not the same to have a team unpack a one-bedroom apartment and a 4-bedroom house. Secondly, it depends on the time frame you need your relocation to finalize. Mostly, professionals can do the unpacking in a day or two, but sometimes people need the service quicker. If you are on a budget but still need help and assistance in this department, think about opting for partial unpacking services. For example, if you have a case of a boomer downsize in your family and you are helping, it will be useful to choose a package with estate clearing services. This way, the senior relocation process will come full circle, and the price will be complementary to a complete package deal.

Are you in need of hiring home organizing services after the move?

certified move managers are an excellent source for moving boomers and seniors that are downsizing.Certain situations almost impose hiring professional unpackers. Here is a list of such cases to help you decide whether you need these services or not:

  • You move a lot for business and don’t have much time to transition because of your busy work schedule.
  • Being a senior citizen without the help of family or friends, where packing and unpacking is a physical hurdle.
  • Maybe you are a busy parent with a large family, little time, and a lot of responsibilities.
  • You have the budget, and you want good value for your money.
  • Having already made a complete package deal with a moving company, from packing, clearing house estates, transportation, and unpacking. 
  • You might have a time constraint on your unpacking for any reason, and you need the service done quickly and efficiently.

Conclusion

Whatever your reasons are, if your budget allows you to, hiring professional unpacking services can turn into an investment; you ultimately invest in more time, allowing you to take care of some more important things, like your family or your job. Time is, after all, our most valuable asset. If you have the budget and the opportunity to take advantage of a stress-free moving experience, you definitely should.

Downsizing & Move documentss

Used photos:
Featured image – https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-smiling-behind-the-headboard-3616688/
Image 1 – https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-in-white-crew-neck-t-shirt-sitting-on-brown-couch-4568697/
Image 2 – https://www.pexels.com/photo/person-in-black-leather-boots-sitting-on-brown-cardboard-boxes-4553277/
Image 3 – https://www.pexels.com/photo/elderly-couple-walking-on-the-street-5637575/

6 Tips for Downsizing Your Home as a Senior

There will come a time when seniors will need to downsize and there are several professionals: organizers, move managers can help

Living as a senior has its own challenges. Many tasks, which once seemed simple, present a challenge now. This is just a part of life, but there are certain things you can do to make your life as a senior easier, more comfortable and to ensure you have more time to enjoy the finer things in life. Downsizing your home as a senior is probably the best way to free up more time for yourself and your hobbies.

At the same time, downsizing can be emotionally draining as well as physically demanding. Therefore, hiring relocation specialists to help you with your move management can make things a lot easier. Ensure that you are familiar with the key issues related to using a senior move manager. They know all the tips and tricks to make your move smooth and hassle-free.

Downsizing in a few easy steps

Reputable relocation specialists know the main rules when it comes to downsizing. There are a few things that can help make your move easier. We will share six tips for downsizing your home as a senior that will help make your life simpler. They will allow you to spend more time doing the things you like.

  1. Face the facts and be emotionally intelligent

Emotional intelligence can significantly influence our decision-making process. Senior relocation is not easy. Some moments might tug on your heartstrings, but it is important that you deal with your emotions. Recognize that downsizing will benefit you in the long run. It might seem difficult when going through old, cherished memories, but keep in mind that it will enable you to create new memories.

Get your kids involved. Ask your family members to help you sort through your belongings and spend time with them, as this will make you feel at ease. Family can get us through the toughest of times, so don’t be afraid to recognize your feelings and discuss them openly.

If you like the neighborhood you currently live in, try consulting a senior move manager and asking them to help you find a smaller place in the same area. If, on the other hand, you wish to move somewhere else, you can always ask for help with the transfer to your new neighborhood. Downsizing and moving don’t have to be stressful and tiring. If organized properly, it can be a simple step towards a lifestyle transformation. Don’t hesitate to search for help, contact your movers today, and let them provide you with the best senior relocation services.

  1. Plan on time and organize in advance

If you feel like you have good organizational skills, you should try to create a system that will allow you to plan and organize the tasks that need to be completed prior to your move. If not, you can look for a move manager or senior moving specialist to help you organize the tasks at hand. Whichever route you choose to take, keep the following in mind:

  • It would be best if you didn’t rush sorting through your belongings. Go through your current home one room at a time and take breaks whenever you begin to feel overwhelmed.
  • Going through your belongings is going to be emotional. It is a good idea to start by going through the items you aren’t too emotionally attached to first. This will get your mind used to the idea of downsizing and will help when dealing with your more cherished belongings later on. You should recognize that you are downsizing and that you won’t have space for all of the items you currently possess.
  • Getting professional estate clearing services can help you if the going gets rough. However, knowing some of their estate clearing secrets can go a long way if you feel up to the task.
  • Pay special attention to the things in your current home that make your life easier and more pleasant. Write notes down to keep track of these things and remind you to create a similar setup in your new home after downsizing. This will help you adjust to your new home faster.
  • Professional home organizing services can help you organize your new home in a way that best suits you and your current needs. You can also use these services to reorganize your home if, at some point, your needs change.

 

  1. Consider getting help

Move management has been around for a while, but specialized senior move management is a relatively young industry. It is, however, a growing industry. This is because it offers an array of senior relocation services that many aging community members find very helpful. This is just one of the reasons why you should consider hiring a senior move manager and getting help with your downsizing and relocation.

movers and the moving expreience is greatly enhanced when you you use a move manager

  1. Consider your storage options

You will also need to think about storage. The fact that you are downsizing means that you won’t be able to take everything you own with you. There might be some items you don’t wish to get rid of, or you don’t use very often but still need them from time to time. You should consider your storage options for these items. The most common and most easily stored items are:

  • Oversized furniture and home items.
  • Documents and paperwork.
  • Items of emotional value.
  • Seasonal items.

Make sure to choose the right type of storage for your belongings. Some items might require special storage conditions.

using a public storage facility is great, but can be better with a move manager and organizing professional

  1. Pack light and pack right

When your moving day arrives, you will need to have access to your essential items as soon as you arrive at your new home. This means that you will need to pack in a way that enables you to get to the things you use most often, such as toiletries, cutlery, and such. You won’t be needing seventeen sets of dishes and cutlery on your first day. If you do pack that many, you will probably need to learn about de-cluttering your kitchen sooner rather than later. Make sure to pack light and pack right. Basically, what this means is that you need to pack a few boxes with just your essentials. These are the things you will need during the first few days of your move, such as a towel, your toothbrush, a few plates, a set of cutlery, and a good book or perhaps your favorite CD to help you relax the first few evenings. Label these boxes clearly and concisely and when loading them into the moving vehicle, try to pack these boxes last.

  1. Get to know your new home in advance

Getting to know your new home before you move into it can help you adjust to life after downsizing your home as a senior. Try to obtain a layout or floorplan of the place. Decide where you wish to put your furniture and try to imagine what it will look like. Try to find the best fit for your furniture and other belongings. Don’t be scared to rearrange your items several times. Also, getting to know your new neighborhood and the locations of grocery stores and doctors’ offices will make you feel more at ease once you move in.

having good checklists before starting a downsizing move

See the upside

A common mistake seniors make when downsizing is that they view it from the wrong perspective. Don’t think of downsizing as a loss of any freedom or space. Instead, think of it as optimizing your life. Why spend precious time cleaning square footage that you very rarely use? Why spend hard-earned money on heating and electricity for empty rooms? As a matter of fact, if, as a senior, you still plan on working from home, there are plenty of tips on how to upgrade your workspace for maximum productivity and happiness. With downsizing come savings, both in terms of financials and time. This means you will have more time and money to spend on more important things. These are the things that fill your life with joy and laughter.

Imagine yourself happy and relaxed in the near future, enjoying life to the fullest. Downsizing your home as a senior will help you achieve that.

Using a Checklist before downsizing will create an easier less stressful move

 

Used images:
https://pixabay.com/photos/building-plan-floor-plan-354233/
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https://pixabay.com/photos/senior-couple-bed-happy-4723737/

 

My Kids Don’t Want It- Now What?
Estate Settlement: Tangible Personal Property

By: Regina Lark, Sheri Samotin, Noelle Valentino

When downsizing, there are many precious items that need to be organized with great care

There are many challenges to dismantling an estate – from recovering important documents and hopefully avoiding probate, to deciding what to do with elegant (but worthless) tchotchkes and table linens. The size and scope of some projects can be daunting, even for the most dedicated of adult children, who likely have too much stuff in their own homes to tackle the clear-out of their parents’ household. There are so many moving parts, and often requires a team of experienced, dedicated professionals who work together to settle the estate and get the home ready for sale. An estate attorney, a realtor, and a good handyperson ought to be part of the team. 

Dealing with the contents of the property is a different matter. Three professionals: a private fiduciary, an appraiser/valuator of tangible personal property, and a company that specializes in de-cluttering and downsizing, walk us a through their process to dismantle an estate, and the considerations that must be made when helping a family going through this process. 

How to Get Started: Build Your Team

Sheri Samotin, Private Professional Fiduciary, LifeBridge Solutions

One of the most frequent comments I hear in my first conversation with a prospective client is, “I’m overwhelmed.” If the prospect is the family member indecluttering and organizing means that everything will be put into a proper place and can be easily found. charge of administering a trust or estate, they have many unfamiliar tasks to handle. Sometimes, I am my ownDocuments need to be organized professionally uasing a checklist to insure all are in place “client” if I am serving as a designated trustee or administrator. I must make the magic happen regarding clearing and distributing the personal property in accordance with the trust and/or will.

After I have reviewed the relevant documents, it’s time to lay out my strategy. Typically, the first step is to go through the home to locate any valuable items that could “grow feet” and disappear. Those items need to be secured. In addition, we search every nook and cranny for any papers that might be needed to support prior tax returns or to help us file a return. In one recent case, we

thought the decedent was a single man. In fact, when going through his papers, we learned that he had been briefly married as a young man and that the marriage was annulled. Sometimes we are looking for information related to the “family tree” to make sure everyone who is legally entitled to notice receives it. At the same time we are going through the paper, we make “shred” bags for documents that don’t need to be saved but require proper disposal.

Once the paper monster has been tamed, it is time to get an idea of the value of the personal property. 

Valuing Tangible Personal Property, Appraisal and Disposition at Auction

Noelle Valentino, Fine and decorative arts specialist; household contents appraiser, John Moran Auctioneers & Appraisals

More often than not, the bulk of the value of an estate’s tangible personal property can be found in just a handful of items. It is important to engage a specialist early in the process to identify the items of significance before they are claimed by relatives, given away, donated, or worse. A qualified tangible appraiser will produce an inventory of household contents, or a formal appraisal report, depending on the needs of the estate. The intended use of the document must be disclosed in the report: equitable distribution, charitable donation, estate tax filing, or something else. 

A Clear Path can coordinate the valuation and selling of collections as part of their organizing serviceFor IRS purposes, estates approaching the exemption limit will require a household contents appraisal. The IRS defines art broadly: jewelry, paintings, silver, rugs, decorative objects and more. Outside of tax regulation, there are often issues that arise due to family reasons and an estate appraisal may be recommended to avoid later conflict. For the purposes of distribution among beneficiaries, it is helpful to discuss a minimum value threshold with the appraiser. A fair market value of several hundred dollars is often a good starting point for an object’s inclusion in the report.

Appraisals are considered legal documents and can be relied upon by an attorney, the court, or the IRS. Selecting a personal property appraiser who is USPAP compliant, with membership in one of the three preeminent appraisal organizations, is imperative. Qualified appraisers in your area can be located on the websites of the Appraisers Association of America, International Society of Appraisers, or American Society of Appraisers.  

When considering the eventual disposition of assets from an estate, an auction house can also be helpful in identifying the items of greatest value in the home. With the intent to secure new consignments, they will provide free auction estimates. With that said, auction houses are likely to include only the items valued over $1,000 and appealing for bidders in today’s market. Note well that an auction estimate does not take the place of an appraisal. It is however, an advisable sale venue for estate property due to its the broad reach and rapid mode of sale, together ensuring fair market value has been achieved.

When the ‘good stuff’ is gone… Now what? 

Regina F. Lark, Ph.D., downsizing and organizational specialist, A Clear Path, LLC

The typical household contains thousands of pieces of tangible personal property. Every room has stuff – some rooms have more stuff than other rooms. Drawers and cupboard and closets are filled with flatware, dishes and clothes. Even if considerable downsizing had already happened, there’s no getting around this fact: we all have to deal with our clients’ stuff.  

To get the job done in an efficient and timely way, look for a professional organizing/downsizing company with access to a broad range of resources to complete the dismantling of an estate. Find out what they know, and who they know, when you ask these questions: 

  • What does your business liability cover? 
  • Do you have a project management fee? 
  • Are you able to ship items across, or out of, the country? 
  • Have you encountered a hoarding situation? If so, how do you handle the massive volume of ‘stuff?’
  • Do you have the ability to sell what the auction house doesn’t want? 

After the auction house reviews and removes what I call the “big ticket” items, the remainder of the household contents can be photographed (to attach to donation receipt), packed-up, and hauled to the nearest non-profit. If removal is all that’s required, a good downsizing company can have the estate cleared and ready for the realtor to put on the market.

Another option is working with a traditional estate sale company. They usually spend two weeks tagging everything in the house, around the yard, and in every kitchen drawer.  Many estate sale companies charge a percentage of the sale’s gross profits. For example, if the company charges 40% of gross profits and the sale yields $10,000 then you will owe the company $4,000. Be sure to ask about any additional services such as trash removal, post-sale clean-up, etc. If the estate is thick with clutter, does the estate sale company address that, too? 

Over the past couples of years, online estate sale auctions have become wildly popular, and MaxSold, a Canadian company with a robust platform, has generated a large footprint in the United States. The concept is simple – an organizing team catalogs every item in the house into what are known as “lots,” distinct groupings of one or more items sold at auction– creating lots of lots! The sale is live online for 7-10 days and every lot begins at $1 (yes, one dollar). The bidding is particularly fast and furious on the final day of bidding. The ultimate split is 70% to the estate and 30% to Max Sold. If a fiduciary hires a team of professionals to dismantle an estate, it will likely come close, break-even, or make money on the sale of the remaining tangible personal property, and quite often, offset the cost of their service.

Conclusion: 

Due diligence regarding the estate’s personal property is an important aspect of fiduciary duties. Sentiments tend to run high when it comes to the “stuff.” Suspend bias and remain objective with assets you are unfamiliar with, calling in experts where appropriate. Moreover, encouraging your clients to update their estate plans ahead of time, including a review of existing appraisals with personal property assets, as this can prevent later confusion. Proactive steps in identifying items of value and having a working plan for the disposition of tangible personal property can mitigate the risks and avoid family conflict, or a professional headache.

Using a Checklist before downsizing will create an easier less stressful move

7 Reasons you should Hire a Senior Move Manager

moving and using a sr. move manage makes the easier for all involved.Moving is always a stressful endeavor no matter how old you are, and it gets even tougher with years of memories and possessions accumulated in the home. Statistics from the National Council on Aging indicate that more than half of seniors say that the hassle of moving is the primary reason why they prefer to age in their current homes.

Senior moving management can help relieve this burden by helping the elderly downsize and transition smoothly to assisted living communities or other alternative housing programs. Whether your elderly parent has passed on or is experiencing a deterioration in mobility and cognitive ability that requires additional care in an assisted living facility, a senior moving manager can help you through this challenging transition.

Why Hire a Senior Move manager

For many seniors, the onset of mobility issues could be something sudden, such as a slip and fall, or a culmination of years of illness or self-neglect. In either case, your aging parent may not take care of their belongings, and the responsibility now falls to you.

And, since there is nothing much you can do to reverse the situation, you must focus on managing the family dynamics and emotions, especially from siblings, grandchildren, and other relatives. Dealing with this process often feels like a full-time job, and trying to handle it on your own can easily weigh you down.

Fortunately, a professional move manager can save you time and mental or emotional stress by handling this additional project on your behalf. So, here are the 7 reasons you should hire a senior move manager:

1. They Make Seniors Feel in Charge of Hard Transitions

It’s critical to involve seniors in the moving process, so they don’t feel pushed out of their homes. This may mean allowing them to organize books or clothing or sorting through a box of gift ornaments — it all depends on the physical and cognitive condition of the senior.

If your aging parent is able to make some decisions, they will more likely feel comfortable with the move. More often, the need to move homes for seniors is often triggered by a change in health or loss of a spouse. In such situations, they may not necessarily be in the right frame of mind to take total control.

An impartial third party can help you bring order to the moving process, reducing stress for you and your aging parent. As a result, you can focus on the more important physical and emotional needs of the senior.

2. Emotionally Prepare Seniors for Assisted Living

One of the biggest hindrances to seniors transitioning to assisted living facilities is the strong desire to age at home, surrounded with familiar possessions and memories. A senior move manager can listen to the concerns of your aging parent and offer acceptable solutions based on their experience.

Senior move managers can help reduce the fear of downsizing and make a seemingly overwhelming process less daunting. Once the senior accept the decision to move to assisted living, a move manager will handle the physical aspect of moving, ensuring that the process smooth and hassle-free.

3. Prevent Family Conflict

The stress associated with moving, coupled with conflicting personalities, can raise arguments among your siblings. A senior move manager will help de-escalate the situation by addressing the concerns of different family members to ensure that the move is smooth and free of family conflicts.

With their experience, move managers can provide an objective perspective and guide your family through the process of deciding which items to keep, donate, or sell.

NASMM A+ accreditation for demonstrating superior level of excellence in Sr. Move Management4. Experience and Certification

Professional senior move managers are required to carry general liability insurance, acquire training in ethics and safety, and provide a written contract to protect the family, their senior loved one, and the move manager. There is also a code of ethics and standard of practice that all move managers must follow.

Moreover, many move managers are professionals with backgrounds in nursing, psychology, and social work. Their combination of professional backgrounds, life experiences, and desire to connect with seniors uniquely prepares them for this unique role.

5. Help Seniors Downsize with Dignity

Many seniors have lived in one home for their entire adult life, and probably filled it with reminders of people and places they adore. A senior move manager has the training and experience to help seniors move with their possessions without taking along the memories.

More often, younger generations fail to understand the emotional difficulties of downsizing, a disconnect that can leave adult children frustrated by their aging parents’ reluctance to let go. Senior move managers experience such situations every time, and they can better empathize with seniors struggling with downsizing. They’re able to suggest creative solutions you may not have thought of.

6. Save Time and Money

If your family members live in different geographical regions, a move manager can save you considerable time and resources. Instead of all family members making multiple flights to organize possessions, move, and organize estate sales, the mover will manage many of these tasks.

With advancements in technology, most downsizing and selling tasks can be done virtually. Dependable move managers today use technology to manage inventory, sell possessions online, and locate proper storage for your senior’s remaining stuff.

Most managers also have valuable networks of real estate agents, appraisers, cleaning services, and staging experts to take care of every detail for your family.

7. Support a Senior’s Move Regardless of the Distance

Sometimes, a senior move manager will pack and ship hundreds of items to your preferred location. Other times, they’ll take care of the transportation and accompany your loved one across the country.

No matter how involved your move manager is, the process of downsizing and moving usually creates a personal relationship. Many established senior move managers continue speaking with their clients long after the move is completed to ensure they are comfortable in their new environment.

A Clear Path Can Help!

Are you planning to move your aging parent to an assisted living facility? A Clear Path can help you navigate the hurdles and make the transition smooth and comfortable for both of you. We take full responsibility for sorting, organizing, cleaning, disposing of, moving, and selling all the property in your parent’s home.

It’s a one-call process. Once you make a call to A Clear Path, our experienced team takes charge and can manage every step along the way. If you need to dispose of the old home, A Clear Plan offers services to address trash, e-waste, shredding, and even toxic waste. For more valuable items, we can organize an auction or an estate sale.

Thanks to our complete line of services, we can help alleviate the stress associated with this sensitive transition. In addition to the tactical help, we can also become an impartial third party to help you address family conflicts over every belonging. Contact us today for more information about senior move management and how we can help you keep your aging parent happy throughout the moving process.

Downsizing & Move documentss

6 key issues using a Senior Move Manager

If you’re moving out of your old home late in life, you’ll be overwhelmed by all that needs to be done. Some of the considerations you need to make include packing, packing and unpacking for boomers with a Sr. move managerdecluttering, scheduling movers, and selling the home. A senior move manager can help you with all aspects of moving you from professional packing, downsizing, to arranging furniture in a new space, so it feels like home. If you’re moving to a nursing home, the manager will also play a significant role. Here are some of the key issues of using a senior move manager.

1- Planning

The most important step in the moving process is planning. Senior move managers will liaise with your family members to agree on a timetable for the move. Senior moving services work depending on your pace and will walk you through all the steps of the move. One of the main aspects of planning is liquidating and downsizing.

A senior moving company will help you liquidate unnecessary assets. A senior move manager will help you sort the possessions you should keep and those you should discard. Move managers work with family members and seniors to determine which the fondest keepsakes are and what should be left to the new owner. Ultimately, a senior moving director will facilitate realistic decisions on the current items that should move and fit into your new home. Planning can be time-consuming. If you don’t know where to start your plan to move, consult a senior move manager.

2- Financial Exploitation

Hiring ordinary movers to handle your relocation may be a costly affair. Movers usually consider the tasks involved, such as sorting, packing, loading, and offloading, when setting their rates. Working with NASMM movers is different.

According to NASMM, senior movers have the experience of assisting in lifestyle transitions. These professionals also possess the emotional expertise to support you through the difficulties of moving at a late stage in their life. In this regard, NASMM movers don’t exploit their clients by charging exorbitant prices for their services.

3- Anticipate Challenges

There are some challenges you may overlook when moving. For example, you may have too much stuff that cannot fit in the new house, or the person you intend to leave your possessions when moving to a nursing home may not have enough room in their home. Hiring a senior move manager ensures that all these challenges are catered for.

Senior move managers are experienced in moving. This means they’ve seen it all. Therefore, the professional will not take anything to chance and will make sure they account for everything.

4- Prepare Adults For Assisted Living

Seniors are hesitant about moving to assisted living because they want to age at home where there are familiar possessions and memories. Sometimes adult children cannot convince their parents to move to assisted living homes. Many elderly parents think that when they go to a nursing home, they’re being sent away because they’re a burden. They’re afraid of isolation and loneliness.

A senior move manager will help the elderly understand the benefits of living in assisted living conditions. The move manager will mediate between the elderly and their adult children and try to address their concerns. The move manager will also recommend a nursing home that will best fit a senior based on their concerns.

5- Unpacking and Resettling

If a senior isn’t moving to a nursing home, the senior moving company will help them settle comfortably in their new home. Whether you want your new home to be like your old home or get rid of old memories, the manager will fulfill your wishes. This includes consulting you on aspects such as where furniture should be placed and what items should be stored in the garage or attic.

re organizing after a boomer move with a Sr. move managerA senior move manager is involved in unpacking your items. The manager will ensure all possessions are moved to the appropriate rooms and quickly unpack items you need immediately, such as crucial documents and medications. The manager will also arrange all items to optimize storage.

6- Support After The Move

A senior move manager’s role doesn’t end when you’ve settled in at your new home or the nursing home. Your manager will ensure all the possessions you left behind are donated or distributed to relatives. Your senior move manager will also be responsible for sprucing up your home before it’s sold.

The senior move manager will be involved with cleaning your old home, yard work, renovations, and repairs. The manager may also assign a real estate agent to undertake the sale of your home. The manger could also manage the estate sale and ensure the proceeds of the sale reach you or are distributed according to your wishes.

In Conclusion

Moving is quite a stressful experience, especially if you’re doing it late in life. With all the possessions you’ve accumulated over the years, you may have a difficult time downsizing. If you’re moving to a nursing home, you may want your possessions taken to your next of kin. If you’re moving to a new home, you may be worried about settling into your new home. A senior move manager can help alleviate your stress and facilitate a smooth transition to your new life.

Using a Checklist before downsizing will create an easier less stressful move

5 Rules for downsizing

Downsizing for seniors is a stressful and laborious task. Sorting through a household full of possessions and a lifetime of memories is quite a daunting task. It is even more challenging if you need to downsize unexpectedly because of health concerns or other emergencies. Many seniors find it difficult to part with items they do not need. Here are five rules for retirement downsizing with senior move managers.

1- Develop a Plan

A professional move manager will help your downsizing with helpful checklists.A good rule of thumb is to prepare for a move in advance and not wait until the 11th hour to start making plans to move. You should make plans before you list your home or at the first sign of failing health. It is advisable to consult a senior move manager to help you make an efficient plan.

Start with the three main rooms: the living room, kitchen, and family room. These are the most cluttered rooms because they are used daily and have a high emotional value. Separate all the items in four piles- things you are going to keep, items you are going to donate, items you are going to give to your family members, and items you will throw away. After you are finished with these rooms, work outwards to garages, attics, and shades.

It is also good to create a system of downsizing. Some of the standard systems are de-cluttering, donating, and documenting. A senior move manager can help you employ a method of downsizing that is best suited for you.

2- Consider the New Space

It does not matter if you are moving to an assisted living facility, a small apartment, or a family member. You need to develop a plan of where items will go according to the available space. First, determine the amenities that you are going to need. What security measures or physical needs will you require. You should plan your new space based on these accommodations.

It is also essential to consider size. If you are moving from a large house to a small apartment, you will have to do a significant downsizing. In this case, you should consider the most critical aspects of your lifestyle. For example, if you like writing, do not get rid of the desk. Make room for things that matter in your life. It would help if you considered hiring a storage unit for essential items that may not fit in your new space.

3- Eliminate Duplicates

This is very common in the kitchen where you may have several stockpots, different cookie sheets, a handful of spatulas, and so on and so forth. Since you are reducing clutter, you can do with one kind of everything. If you do not feel like donating kitchen pieces you feel are emotionally valuable to you, consider giving them to your child or grandchild.

4- Donate

The best way to make the most out of precious items is to donate them. Donating gives you a feeling of relief, knowing that you are giving back to society. Things like civil war memorabilia are best suited for a school or museum. You may even receive special recognition for legacy gifts in the form of plaque and tax deductions. Items that will Donatoins are a great way to help downsizing with a professional move managernot fetch much at a yard sale should also be donated where they will be more helpful, like at a children’s camp.

5- Make Some Extra Cash Through Sales

Nowadays, it is easy to sell things yourself through online sites such as eBay and Craigslist. There are also Smartphone apps that enable you to make quick sales. Yard sales are a fast way to sell items, but the prices are usually low. On the other hand, Craigslist has a broad audience, and you have a good chance of getting more for your items. Consider consignment for handbags, furniture, and unnecessary accessories. They have reasonable prices and you will be able to get rid of substantial items like furniture. If you are not handy with computers, you can request for the help of your children or grandchildren who may be more computer-savvy and will efficiently market your items through popular online platforms.

In Conclusion

Moving as a senior can be depressing if you are unprepared or cannot let go of your possessions. Many senior people struggle with sorting out what they do not need because they are fond of all their memorabilia and precious items. In such situations, it takes the expertise of a senior move manager to help with downsizing. Some of the rules of retirement downsizing may not be easy to agree with, but they are necessary and help to declutter your home before you transition into a new home. Make sure you consult a senior move manager in advance to help you adjust to the prospect of downsizing and moving to your new home.

 

Baby Boomers Are Downsizing: How to Cope with the Crisis

Baby Boomers are slowly downsizing, but a new crisis is arising in the housing industry since few Millennials want their homes, particularly big and outdated ones. According to a recent report, the housing demand from younger generations is inadequate to fill the void left by the crowd of departing older owners. Overall, seniors are projected to exit more than 21 million homes over the next two decades. As they exit their huge homes and downsize, there is going to be massive investment implications across the country. So, what can you do to cope with the challenges of baby boomer downsizing?

Aging in Place vs. Downsizing

Many baby boomers wish to retire by the age of 60 and settle closer to their children or grandchildren, but finding affordable houses to downsize to is a huge challenge. As a result, there is always a tug of war between staying put or downsizing. So, which is the better option?

According to a 2018 Survey of Home and Community Preferences, AARP revealed that 76 percent of Americans aged 50 and above prefer to remain in their current homes, and 77 percent would wish to live in their current neighborhood for as long as possible. On the contrary, just 59 percent of older Americans envision the possibility of staying in their community, either in a smaller home within the area (13 percent) or in their current home (46 percent).

Baby boomer downsizing is faced with several challenges as many boomers enter their golden years with substantial mortgage debt. Much of the mortgage borrowing is carried by households with no pension and below-median incomes and assets. This is perhaps the reason why many baby boomers opt to remain in their current homes. Other factors, such as living in familiar territories, retaining home equity, or a lack of affordable housing options, may also drive the decision to stay put.

Aging in place, on the other hand, can be harder to achieve if the home isn’t equipped to meet the future needs of the boomers. There is a close linkage between housing and health care, and making your house accessible for in-home health care is of paramount importance. However, this can be a big challenge in lower-density areas with limited transportation and accessibility to medical practitioners.Organizing and packing for a downsizing boomer

The Solution!

As a baby boomer stuck in this dilemma, there are multiple options you could explore to cope. They include:

1- Tapping Equity to Stay Put

Mobility and health issues are the biggest retardants for seniors looking to stay in their current homes. You may need amenities such as bathroom grip bars, wheelchair ramps, walk-in showers, and wider doorways and hallways. However, such home improvements can be costly. Fortunately, if you own your home outright or have adequate equity, you can borrow some cash against your home’s equity to help pay for the modifications. Some of the best options to consider include home equity loans, home equity lines of credit (HELOC), VA financing, and reverse mortgage.

2- Tapping Equity to Stay in your Community

The increasing shortage of affordable housing coupled with skyrocketing mortgage rates creates a significant barrier to baby boomer downsizing. However, higher rates create a huge mobility barrier to all cadres of the society, including the millennials. If you have significant equity in your current home, you have an upper hand in competing for smaller, less expensive houses, thanks to the inflated appreciation.

Instead of trying to relocate to more expensive neighborhoods to be closer to family, you can look for a smaller home within your community and tap into your current home’s equity to raise funding.

3- Thinking Outside the Conventional Housing Box

In many communities, the limited housing options complicates everything for baby boomer downsizing. Surprisingly, some older folks are devising more creative solutions that buck tradition. According to an AARP survey, adults aged 50 and above are today open to new housing alternatives. To be precise, 32 percent prefer home sharing, 31 percent are open to building an accessory dwelling unit, while 56 percent prefer living in villages that provide services that support aging.

Whether your aim is to gain companionship or attain economic viability, you can think outside the box and opt for unconventional housing solutions. The “Golden Girls” system of roommates is one example of shared-housing arrangements that are gaining steam. As the affordable housing crisis continues to brew, unconventional solutions are increasingly becoming less taboo and more accepted.

Another alternative is to build an accessory dwelling unit that suits your senior needs. An accessory dwelling unit is simply a smaller, secondary building that attaches to your primary home or situated on the same lot. Think of it as a mother-in-law suite or granny flat that offers a livable solution for seniors. It’s a great option if you wish to age in place while generating extra rental income from your main house. However, check with your local zoning or building authorities if it’s possible to get approval for an accessory dwelling unit in your region.

Final Thoughts

Whether your plan is to downsize or stay put, housing expenses will undoubtedly play a critical role in your overall retirement plan. It’s important to craft a financial plan for retirement. Talk with a financial advisor or a mortgage lender to figure out what options will help you live comfortably without jeopardizing your retirement income. Other than affordability and having a comfortable place to call home, baby boomer downsizing should be informed by accessibility to family, doctors, hospitals, transportation, and social amenities.

Smart Organizational Tips for Downsizing to an Apartment

Smart Organizational Tips for Downsizing to an Apartment

Downsizing to a smaller apartment can be overwhelming. But, if you plan ahead and take it one step at a time, you’ll find the entire experience not only enjoyable, but also cathartic as you begin the organizational process to simplify your life.  

Renting a smaller apartment comes with plenty of benefits, from lower utility bills and rent to less space to clean and keep organized. A smaller space can even be a simpler way of living, while also allowing you more time and money for yourself. 

But, before you get started, check out the tips below that will relieve some of the stress associated with downsizing and keep you on track for a smooth transition. 

Preparing Your Belongings

Downsizing is always about boxes, packing them and then unpacking them. Pack by room is the best.Start preparing for your move in advance, perhaps even months ahead of time. If you know you want to downsize, begin working on the following now. Doing so will help you tremendously when the time comes to start packing.

  • Keep Track of How Often You Use Things

You probably notice these things every day, but don’t give them much thought. When you’re deciding what to wear, what plate to eat on, what glasses to drink from, and other small decisions like these, you always lean toward certain things. So, start keeping track of the items you use every day and those that you only use once a week, once a month or not at all. Then, track these habits on a piece of paper to visualize the usefulness of your items. This will make it easier to discard some of them when it’s time to pack for a new place. 

  • Find a Use for it

Sometimes, you keep things just because. Although it’s important to have personal trinkets and items you treasure — even if they’re not particularly useful — be careful about becoming an emotional hoarder. That means being unable to get rid of things with which you are emotionally connected. In time, they’ll pile up and you’ll have boxes upon boxes of memories that you just can’t give up. If you have a hard time letting go, ask for help from professionals and check out our guides for coping with hoarding.

So, while it might be tough, try to find the purpose in all of your things. Does that picture make you feel something or is it filled with emotion? If so, then it’s probably something you want to keep. On the other hand, if it’s just something you’ve had forever that doesn’t really speak to you, then it’s probably time to let go

  • Discard Unused Items Regularly

Sometimes, we buy stuff we think we’ll use, but then we never do. These items often include kitchen tools that are too complicated or a hassle, or spur-of-the-moment purchases for that new hobby that we never actually begin. If it’s something you’re keeping just in case you’ll want to pick it up some day, you should probably discard it.

Preparing for the New Apartment

Now that you have a basis for your organization, you can start to prepare for your move.

  • Measure the Space 

Once you’ve decided on the apartment you want to rent, go for a visit before you begin packing. Check everything out, measure the space and write down the dimensions of all of your rooms. As you wander around the apartment, visualize your things in each room and how you will interact with them. You might even want to write down the main items you want in each room. At the very least, have a mental image before you start bringing in boxes. That way, you’ll know what to put where and unpacking will be much easier.

  • Pack by Room, not Item Type

Making lists for downsizing is highly recommended, particularly for boomers.Group your items by room, not by type. For instance, if you’ve visualized a small library in your living room, but you also have some books you like to keep close to your bed, then don’t be afraid to separate those. The same goes for everything else — from pillows to artwork. 

Note that you don’t have to keep the design from your previous home. This is crucial if you downsize. With fewer rooms in your new apartment, an exact transition might be difficult. So, when you pack, think of the new apartment, not of the old one. Having the list from the previous section will make the transition simpler. Additionally, remember to label your boxes and drop them off in the appropriate room.

  • Adapt for Your Lifestyle

Finally, know that there’s no such thing as the perfect recipe for downsizing. It all depends on your lifestyle and choices. Although guidance is sometimes necessary and welcome, no one can tell you exactly what to throw away, what to donate or what to sell, because you’re the only one who knows that. Try to detach for a bit and imagine your life with or without certain things. Then, see how that affects the way you live every day. It’s a process you have to be ready for, so make sure to prepare mentally, as well. 

Downsizing is not a burden. It’s a purge and a path to liberation. Embrace this change and remember that it’s not permanent. The choice will always be yours.

About the author: Mihaela Buzec is a passionate reader and writer with an affinity for language and linguistics, as well as the latest technological developments. She discovered her passion for real estate at RENTCafé, and you can read more of her articles on their blog.

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