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

3 Ways to Practice Self-Care During a Move

While moving to a new home can be an exciting event and an opportunity for a fresh start, it can also be extremely stressful. Packing, cleaning, unpacking, then cleaning again. It feels like a never ending process. This is especially true for seniors, who may not be able to do all the “heavy lifting,” when it comes to the end to end process of the move. The good news is, there are many ways in which you can combat and stress and get through the moving process with ease. 

Accredited Sr. move manage shoud always be used when when moving boomers and other seniors.Below, we’ve compiled a list of ideas to help the senior community navigate the relocation process. Keep reading for a few tips on how you can practice self-care during your next move. 

Hire Professionals 

Whether you’re moving to a new home and plan to take all of your belongings with you, or you’re downsizing to a smaller space and are only packing the essentials, hiring a professional moving company is a great way to take the stress off your shoulders as well as your families. When searching for the right moving company for you, you’ll want to consider the following: 

  • Price: Is this company within your budget? If so, what are they able to provide you for the price you want to pay? If not, are there specific items on your list you can omit in order for them to be more affordable? These are just a few of the questions you should ask yourself before making a final decision. Sure, price is quite important, but quality is key if you truly want to make this a stress-free experience.  
  • Customer Service: Before signing any type of contract, you want to do your research. Check into the company website and take a look at their reviews page. If they have received a lot of positive feedback based on their past work, you may feel more comfortable choosing them. On the other hand, if the reviews aren’t so great, or there’s none at all, consider keeping your search going and look into some other options. If you’re not super tech savvy, you can always check around with people you know and go with a company based on word of mouth recommendations. This is, afterall, the best form of advertising! Be mindful of the fact that seniors can be taken advantage of in situations like this and do not let your guard down. 
  • Licenses and Insurance: When hiring movers, it’s crucial you ensure they have their own insurance and licensing. Any reputable company will carry their own property damage and cargo policy which deems them liable should anything happen to any of your belongings during the move. Movers should also protect their employees by providing some type of workers compensation policy should they get hurt on the job. This also protects you from any liability should an accident happen.
  • Equipment: This is especially important if you’re planning to move heavier items such as televisions, washing machines, or any other items that need to be handled with extra care. Sure, a bunch of people may be able to lift these items, but how safe are they really being? The right equipment includes box carts, elastic moving strips and even a small forklift depending on the size of the items. In addition, you’ll want to consider what types of vehicles this company has to offer and if their size is conducive to your items.  

Embrace Convenience 

When you’re in the midst of a move, or even once you’ve settled into your new home, the last thing you want to do is worry about is an everyday task such as grocery shopping. If you don’t feel like heading out to a store, or simply don’t have time, utilize a grocery delivery service to stock your new space with your everyday essentials. You’d be shocked at just how many items are available for delivery. From bread and milk to cleaning supplies, and even vitamins and over the counter medications, the list goes on and on. Having everything delivered to you, and in a timely fashion, will lend you more free time to get settled in your new space. 

Another great way to embrace convenience during your move is hiring a person or a company that specializes in home organizing services. Regardless of whether it’s to help you with packing and unpacking or decluttering, you want to start out in your new space on the right foot from an organizational standpoint. After you’ve lived somewhere for so long, it’s normal to accumulate many items. Sometimes these items can hold sentimental value, making it more difficult to part with them. 

That said, it is important to recognize what items you should save and which items you should consider donating or recycling. If you’re curious as to what items can and cannot be recycled or donated, check out our list here. If you feel your problem with holding onto things is more serious, check out our page on chronic disorganization.    

Utilize Estate Clearing Services

Sometimes, the move we’re making isn’t always one we make by choice or we’re not able to be hands on in the moving process at all. This is the perfectProfessional in moving, packing and unpacking eases stress and quickens the entire process opportunity to utilize Estate Clearing Services. Our team provides compassionate and professional care during these critical circumstances and anyone should feel safe knowing we treat your belongings as if they are our own. Families of those who receive our estate clearing services can rest assured that we will handle all items with care and follow directions when it comes to heirlooms and anything else that carries out your desires to preserve your family legacy. 

The estate clearing team can assist in any cleaning and decluttering you’d like done as well. This will make the moving process much smoother as you’ll be able to identify the items you’d like to take along with you to your new home as well as those you’d like to sell or donate. To learn more about estate settlement, check out this article from our blog.  

Moving on to a new residence can drum up a number of emotions. At Clear Path, we know that moving can signify the beginning of one chapter and the end of another. We’d like to do everything we can to help you throughout this process. We also think it’s important to treat yourself kindly and embrace convenience as much as possible. If you’re a senior considering a move, don’t hesitate to contact us directly to learn more about the ways we can help you! 

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/
https://unsplash.com/photos/ZVkDLrXGMdw
https://unsplash.com/photos/OoiWpdFC0Rw
https://pixabay.com/photos/senior-couple-bed-happy-4723737/

 

Dual Success: How To Start A Business And Move Your Household At The Same Time

Many successful business ventures got their starts in garages, home offices or at kitchen tables. If you’re ready to launch your small business with a goal of operating primarily from a home-based location, it might be time to consider a move that provides both your business, and your family, room to grow. Let A Clear Path help, starting with the following tips:

Plans and Professionals

While launching a new business and moving to a new home simultaneously might feel like a daunting task, when done in a well thought-out manner and the right people on your team, it can pay both personal and professional dividends!

As HRchitect explains, pre-planning is key to a successful startup. Of course, this is all the more complex when you’re moving at the same time you’re getting your venture off the ground. For your enterprise’s purposes, a formal business plan can help you structure your goals and how to meet them. It will also come in handy if you apply for any loans or grants.

For assistance with finding and purchasing a new home and sorting out details related to your venture, partnering with a professional organizer can make a world of difference. From decluttering to arranging a professional mover to packing and unpacking, turn to a professional you can trust for solutions.

Moving and setting up a a new office is a job for a professional organizer. Setting Your Budget

As CNBC explains, you need to create a budget that takes into consideration all of the usual home-buying financial needs, such as down payment, closing costs and fees. You may want to look for a reputable lender with experience in home-based business ventures who can help you find the best loan products available for your situation. If your new home will require any type of retrofitting (like the addition of a separate business entrance), factor anticipated costs into the budgeting process.

Striking The Perfect Balance

Of course, you’ll want to take your family’s needs into consideration when situating both the household and the business in a new location. Give thought to how you will collectively use the property. Consider a home that has a mother-in-law’s quarters or a detached casita that can be used specifically for work purposes. If that’s not possible, look for a layout that can accommodate both work and home – for example, a design where office space is on one side of the house, and communal living space is on the other.

Getting Things Organized

Don’t allow the moving process to derail your business start-up efforts. Create a “go box” that has all of your most critical files, documents and essential materials, and keep it with you, rather than pack it into storage containers. This will ensure you have all relevant business info with you throughout the move. Encourage family members to do the same by packing their own essential items and keeping them at hand. This approach will reduce any “down time” around getting your business up and running.

Making Work From Home Work

According to the Hartford Co., working from home can have numerous rewards, including having more family and personal time,An organized office is best completed with the help of a professional organizer and operating on your own schedule. Running a successful business from home requires exceptional time management and organizational skills, as well as a commitment from the rest of the household to draw a firm boundary between work and personal life. 

Dedicated office space and equipment can help. For instance, buying modular furniture for your office space gives you the option of changing up your environment as your business grows; a new laptop, desktop, printer, scanner or other office essentials, such as filing cabinets, chairs, lighting and  phone systems, can ensure professional operations. You can shop online for the latest offers, discounts and specials to aid in this effort.

There are many upsides to starting a new business and operating it from home. In addition to taking advantage of Internal Revenue Service home office tax deductions, you may also have the ability to set your own work hours, and cultivate a fulfilling work-life balance. There’s also the added benefit of not paying rent for office space, which potentially means you can put more of your income toward housing. 

Having all of your personal and professional objectives top-of-mind before getting started will help ensure a smooth and successful venture. And remember to partner with A Clear Path, who can ease you through this challenging process.

Images: Unsplash.com

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

Moving Management During the Holidays

Buying a new home is a taxing enough journey on its own. Throw in a global pandemic along with general holiday stress and you’re sure to be looking at one chaotic move. There are many factors to consider when buying a home during the holidays. Organizing for the big day involves time management, financial planning, and finding properly trained relocation specialists. 

If you’re looking for advice on how to navigate such an exciting life event in these unpredictable times, you’ve come to the right place.

Moving Management

Working can be tedious and exhausting without help. Use a professional organizer to help ease the load.

When considering how you plan to actually move your belongings from one place to another, you may face more difficulty than usual finding any sort of help. Around this time of year, a lot of people are busy with prepping for the holidays and many are seemingly still, and rightfully so, hesitant to assist in any capacity due to the COVID-19 pandemic. On top of relying on your often preoccupied friends and family, you most likely do not have access to the appropriate equipment needed for a big move. Renting moving equipment like a rental truck or dolly can prove to be a time-consuming headache as well. 

In order to alleviate some of that pressure, we recommend our pack and unpack service where you will be working with our trained relocation specialists to help declutter your home and carefully pack away your boxes into our provided boxes and packaging. Having a relocation specialist take some of this burden can be a big help. Using our service will let you focus on some other aspects of the move as you can be as or as little involved as you wish.

Organization and Time Management

Having proper moving management goes hand in hand with organization and time management. It’s easy for some to toss aside any plan of action and dive headfirst into a project, but you will surely find yourself floundering without a proper plan in place. There are some often overlooked organizational tips that you will find helpful during your relocation. Here are some to prioritize throughout:

  • Make a To-Do List

Taking the time to sit down and write out the goals you wish to accomplish is a great way to stay on task. Not only that but referring to the list will help you remember things much easier during this busy time.

  • Set a Time Limit

With each goal you write on your to-do list, set a general time limit for each one. This gives you the ability to plan out the rest of your day and not spend too much time on one task. 

  • Give Yourself Space Between Tasks 

If you realize something is taking a bit longer than expected, give yourself some crucial small breaks in between tasks. Doing so will tremendously help you to succeed in completing tasks thoroughly while not eating up delegated time to other ones. The time in between will be a nice way to help you unwind as well.

  • Be Productive

Everyone’s organization and planning processes are different. For some, waking up early and starting the day off strong comes easy. For others, they become more productive as the day goes on. Finding which hours you are most productive and using that to your advantage will help you get more done throughout the day.

Knowing where everything with great organization is easily accomplished with a professional organizerIf you feel as though there’s too much on your plate to sufficiently plan out your time and organize your move properly, you can roll the fees for our pack and unpacking service into escrow and we will unpack and organize for you. As a financially viable option, it allows you to completely focus on prepping your home for the holidays while we take care of the move entirely. 

Financial Planning

Arguably one of the most important aspects of a move is the financial factor. Your funds may already be a little tight due to a loss of income because of the pandemic or you simply have budget restraints for the upcoming holiday season. Either way, a move can prove to be very pricey. What you individually factor into the price of your move will depend on your specific situation. Some finances to think about ahead of time include:

  • Furnishings for your new home
  • Repair, renovations, or maintenance
  • Upcoming bills
  • Cost of the move itself (gas, hotel stays, food, babysitter or pet sitter, etc.)

Try not to panic if you’ve already created your budget and you see some things you forgot to factor in. There are a handful of different financing options that may be available to you if you’re a bit strapped for cash. If you’re moving from one home to another you could have equity in your home in which case you may qualify for a home equity loan. This option can financially support you with starting a project in your new home, getting a larger or more convenient vehicle, or whatever else may reduce your stress during the move. 

If you are not moving from home to home or you have no equity in your home, you may also want to consider a personal loan from your local bank, credit union, or online lender. Getting a credit card or increasing your credit limit is always an option, but is usually not recommended as it is easy to find yourself racking up some solid debt with a high interest rate. 

During the holidays, everyone just wants to take that time to relax and unwind. Unfortunately, dealing with a move can drastically take away from that. But working smarter and not harder will give you the time back in your life to enjoy these moments with family and friends in a time when it is needed the most. 

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

How Move Management Promotes Minimalist Home Staging

NASMM A+ accreditation represents superior level of excellence in Sr. Move ManagementThe job of a realtor is much more than just finding homes and facilitating sales. Forward-thinking realtors offer their clients all the necessary connections to make the moving experience smoother. By working with a professional move management company, you can streamline the home buying and selling process for a better customer experience.

The expression ‘less is more’ may sound ridiculous when you think about trickling cheese on nachos. However, it holds absolutely true when it comes to prepping a home for sale. More often, minimalist home staging works wonders in creating a first impression and closing deals faster.

Unfortunately, many homes are often filled with personal memories and clutter, making them unsuitable for pictures or showings that would garner the price the client wants. Potential buyers don’t like to show up for an open view and feel like they’re creeping around someone else’s home.

Make your property appealing to potential buyers by moving away excess furniture and sentimental crap and letting the home speak for itself. To achieve that, move management can come in handy and help you declutter and sell your property quickly, and here is how:

Declutter the Home

Move management will help you get rid of all the clutter, including family photos, cliché quotes, and any personalized items in the home. By stripping the property of excess stuff and pieces that reflect the previous owner’s personality, you’ll be left with a simple, minimalist space that potential buyers can picture themselves in.

Professional movers also offer services to address trash, e-waste, shredding, and toxic waste. They can even organize an auction or an estate sale for more valuable possessions.

Make a Home Look Tidier

By sticking with the bare necessities, a room can appear tidy, chic, and even more spacious. That’s an art that furniture stores have mastered, and that’s why those tiny exhibition rooms in fancy furniture stores look dazzling.

When staging a home with unnecessary furniture and knickknacks for sale, it will simply look cluttered and closed-in. Move management can help you take away excess possessions and make the property more appealing.

Help Potential Buyers Imagine Themselves in the Home

When a home is filled to the brim with furniture and personal belongings, it’s difficult for potential buyers to picture themselves living in the home. For example, if a sensual nude portrait hangs on the bathroom wall, it may seem even harder for some people to imagine living in that home.

Move management allows you to take away any unnecessary stuff and stage each room with just the basics. This allows people to mentally move in with their own stuff and visualize how they’ll look in the new home.

Improve Customer Experience

When you collaborate with a reliable moving company, you will significantly improve service delivery to your clients. By connecting your clients with a trusted move manager, you’ll simply be demonstrating how much you care about their overall happiness and satisfaction. This will in turn earn your trust and attract more business.

Professional cleaners also have the experience and expertise to organize and clean properties quickly, which saves your client time, money, and the headache of rushing to do things at the last minute.

Using an NAPO organizer to organize your closets and drawers, puts everything in the right placeOrganize Cupboards and Drawers

Don’t assume that no one will see those personalized portraits just because you stashed them in the bedroom cupboard. Some potential buyers are a nosy bunch – they will likely open cupboard doors and drawers to see the storage space. Move management will help you organize drawers and cupboards and dispose of any junk you don’t need.

Arrange for Thorough Cleaning

After moving out excess furniture and other possessions, your move manager can organize with a reliable cleaning company to carry out a thorough cleaning of the home before you set it up for sale. This will help eliminate lurking dust-bunnies and make the home spotless.

Professional cleaners have the right machinery and expertise to clean floors, walls, and the ceilings – ensuring that every potential buyer who walks into the property falls in love with it.

A Clear Path Can Help!

At A Clear Path, we offer a one-call service to make any home picture-perfect and sale-ready. Our team of experienced professionals and organizers can transform any property from undesirable to “got to have it.” Through our move management services, you can meet or even surpass your quarterly and annual sales goals by listing and selling high-end real estate as quickly as possible.

By converting your property into a blank slate, you can realize better results from your staging experience. Moreover, we roll our fees into Escrow to aid in packing, organizing, and unpacking all your client’s valuables and take care of the whole moving process. Contact us today to learn more about our move management services and how we can help you stage your property for a quick sale while keeping your clients fulfilled throughout the moving process.

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

Realtors Sell Homes Quickly, using a Sr. Move Manager

selling a home is best completed with team work and a sr. move manger is essential for any complicated sale

Many realtors and real estate agents follow the same old patterns of buying magazine and newspaper ads, updating Zillow, hosting a weekend open house, and placing a sign in front of the property for sale. Although it still pays to use these tactics to sell homes, closing a deal is where most real estate agents fail.

So, if you’ve got a property that you wish to sell or rent out ASAP, you need to do things a little differently. Many potential home buyers are not biting because most of these properties are more often cluttered and unorganized, making it impractical to capture eye-catching pictures or videos that would garner the price the client wants.

Move Management Can Help You Close Deals Quickly

Both moving and realtor industries are closely intertwined – their common goal is to help people transition seamlessly to a new home. Both industries also get the majority of their clients through referrals. As a forward-thinking real estate agent, you need to work with a reputable Sr. move management company to help you quickly stage your property for sale.

Moreover, time is always limited for any real estate agent. You’re constantly faced with urgent situations such as showing a client a potential home, scheduling an inspection, or working with an appraiser. By having an experienced Sr. move management company when staging your property for sale, you’ll be always ready to respond to your clients or brokerage.

Here are a few ways a move management company can help you sell your property quickly:

Transform Your Property for Quick Listing

Moving service providers typically support real estate agents in the home staging process to help exceed clients’ expectations and get top dollars for their properties. If your client’s using s sr. move manager to help sell a house is useful to the transformation accomplished through proper staging.home is overstuffed and overflowing with household possessions, a moving company will help you declutter and ready it for staging.

Many of the homes you list often require decluttering to pave way for the staging process. Additionally, if your clients need hand-holding through the moving process and getting rid of the stuff they no longer require, move management services will come in handy.

Some of the steps taken during the move management process include:

  • Helping your clients liberate themselves from their “possessions”.
  • Assessing your organizing styles and preferences
  • Managing the physical moving
  • Offering compassionate guidance through the tough decisions of moving homes
  • Offering meticulous expertise in sorting through papers and organizing critical documents
  • Coordinate junk and donation pick-ups

Move management companies are a critical part of the team you typically use for your listing. More often, clients will want to work with someone who can help them throughout the home selling journey. By helping your clients through the process of moving to a new home, they’ll highly rate you and spread the word about your services, earning you more properties to stage.

Improving Customer Experience

By collaborating with a reliable mover, you will significantly improve service delivery to your clients. Demonstrating to your clients that you care about their overall happiness and satisfaction by connecting them with a trusted moving company, you will ultimately earn more trust and business.

Although some clients may suggest organizing and cleaning their properties on their own to save a few bucks, it’s almost certain that they won’t produce the same level of results as professional movers. If you’re looking to close deals faster, it’s important to walk the fine line of advising your clients to engage the services of a professional mover for top-notch results.

Meet Quarterly and Annual Sales Goals

Working with a reliable mover will help you meet or even surpass your quarterly and annual sales goals by listing and selling more high-end real estate as quickly as possible. Reputable moving companies understand the importance of keeping your clients happy throughout the selling journey and will provide the best moving experience possible.

Flexible Contracts and Payment processes

Today, many reputable moving companies understand the importance of building trust by creating transparent payment processes. In fact, you can sign a contract with a mover and settle the payment in escrow as soon as the service is satisfactorily rendered and the sale is concluded.

Bottom Line

Virtual staging and other marketing techniques are easy and cost-effective ways to get a home market-ready. However, for real estate agents, it’s not a free pass to complete a sale. By transforming your property into a blank slate, you can achieve the best results from your staging experience. At A Clear Path, we have several years of experience working with realtors and real estate agents to declutter their properties for quick staging. We typically roll our fees into Escrow to pack, organize, and unpack all your client’s valuables and manage the entire moving process. Contact us today for more information about move management and how we can help you sell your property quickly while keeping your clients happy throughout the moving process.

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