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The Complete Checklist for Moving Elderly Parents

Havana Dauncey
The Complete Checklist for Moving Elderly Parents

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Preparing your elderly parent for a big move can be quite stressful for both you and your parent. Whether they are moving to a new home, to a retirement estate, into assisted living or even in with you and your family, this period of change can come with a lot of admin, organising as well as complications.

But it doesn’t have to! With just a little extra planning, it can become a seamless experience. And with a trusty checklist of everything you need to do to move your elderly parent, you’re guaranteed to be ready for moving day with the excitement of the new adventure overtaking any stress you may have.

From 2 months before up until moving day, here’s your complete checklist for moving an elderly parent!

2 Months Before Moving Day

Pick a moving day.

Picking a date gives you a day to work towards. And the earlier you decide, the more time you have to plan and prepare to ensure a stressless move. It also allows you to pick a date that’s convenient for everyone so you know not to book up your calendar around that time.

Find a reliable moving service.

Research and compare moving services to find the perfect one that suits your needs and your budget. The best way to do this is with a moving company platform, like Wise Move, that connects you with top-rated and trusted local movers to help you find the most affordable option. Once you’ve found the perfect moving service, get a quote as soon as possible— this will give you time to save if needed.

Make a moving plan.

It’s time to start planning! Make an inventory of all of your parent’s belongings, make a list of everything you’ll need to do and decide on a timeline and schedule to guide the next 2 months of moving preparations. You can also start collecting moving boxes and packing materials.

Delegate responsibilities.

Remember that you don’t have to do this alone. Lean on your support system and your parent’s support system. Ask reliable family members or friends if they would be able to help and assign them tasks to complete in the following months, playing to their strengths.

Assess the floor plan.

If you can access it, get a copy of the floor plan of your parent’s new home. Then you can start planning where your parent’s belongings can go and how you might arrange their furniture. This will give you an idea of whether everything will fit if you need to downsize and if there’s anything new that you’ll need to get.

1 Month Before Moving Day

Identify special items.

Before you begin filling boxes, go through your parent’s home and identify special items, such as antiques, family heirlooms or fragile items. Make sure to put these aside so that they don’t accidentally get packed with everything else. You can also then ensure they’re packed properly and transported separately with you rather than with the bulk of their belongings.

Start packing.

You want to start with the least-used room. This will give you an idea of how long it will take to pack each room and can help you plan which rooms to pack when. Continue to pack up throughout the next few weeks.

Sort and downsize belongings.

Packing for a move is always a great excuse to do some spring cleaning. To make the move more efficient, go through all your parent’s belongings while packing and sell, donate or throw away any items they don’t need, don’t have space for or don’t want anymore.

Organise a storage facility if necessary.

If your parent’s belongings still don’t fit into their new space after some downsizing, now is the time to start looking for a storage facility nearby to hold the remainder of their things. Getting this stuff out of the way now also allows you to focus on the items you’ll be transporting on a moving day.

Change addresses and notify healthcare providers.

Start working through the paperwork required to change your parent’s permanent address, and don’t forget to make this change all important services, such as insurance providers, banks, etc. You also want to notify their healthcare providers of their move, and if necessary find new healthcare providers in their new area for a long-distance move. You can also transfer their prescriptions to a nearby pharmacy so that everything is sorted when your parent reaches their new home.

1 Week Before Moving Day

Finish packing non-essential items.

By this point, you should be finishing up packing everything except the essentials they use every day. You don’t want to have to worry about last-minute packing, so completing this with a week to go gives you time to finalise all the other important pre-move preparations.

Clean the house.

Once everything is packed up, you can start cleaning the house room by room or hire a cleaning service to do it for you. And if you have access to the new house, you can ensure it’s all clean and ready for your parent to move in so that you don’t have to worry about that with all the new furniture in the way.

Get your parent familiar with their new environment.

If your elderly parent is feeling a little nervous or unsettled by their move to a new environment and community, it might be a good idea to take them on a drive around their new neighbourhood if possible, visit local shops or cafes and maybe reach out to some people in the community so that they may know some friendly faces when finally move in.

Moving elderly parents tips and advice

2 Days Before Moving Day

Create a moving day schedule.

With the big day coming up, you can draft a loose moving day schedule based on when the moving service will arrive when you hope to take your parent to their new home, when you plan to arrive and when you hope to have the movers out of the house. This will help you and your parent set realistic expectations for the day and be ready on time. But remember to stay flexible, know that this is just a general idea and be okay when it doesn’t go completely to plan.

Confirm with the moving company.

Have one last check-in with your moving service to confirm what time they will be arriving, the plan of action and any last-minute details or changes you either need to know or share with them.

Start packing essential items.

You can start putting aside any essential items that your parent usually uses every day but may not need until after the move. This can reduce the amount of last-minute small packing you need to worry about on the day.

Moving day with Elderly Parents

Moving Day

Pack the final items.

After your parents are ready for the day, pack the last items like toiletries, clothes, etc. This can be put in a bag or small box that you can travel with you so that you can keep the essential items separated and easily accessible when you arrive at their new home.

Stay calm and relaxed.

Remembering to stay calm will help you keep a clear head and keep away your anxious and chaotic brain that’s more likely to forget things. It’ll also help your elderly parent remain calm, as they may be quite stressed by all the change happening around them.

Show movers where everything should go.

This is where your floorplan planning comes in handy. Once you, your parent and the movers get to the new home, make sure the movers put the furniture and boxes in the right rooms so that you don’t have to worry about moving anything heavy once the movers are gone.

Unpack essential items first.

Don’t worry about unpacking everything on the first day, as you and your elderly parent will probably be quite exhausted, but try to get the essentials out of the boxes and accessible to your parent. As you start unpacking in the following days, start with the most important items.

Spend some time with your parent.

This may not be essential, but it’s definitely recommended. Your elderly may feel a bit lonely or isolated in their new environment, having left their community behind. So make sure to pay them extra visits to help them settle into their new space, providing an extra pair of hands for any help they may need.

Looking For an Affordable and Reliable Moving Service?

When it comes to your parents, you want only the best, most trusted moving service that will treat their belongings with the utmost care and respect. That’s where Wise Move comes in!

With Wise Move’s moving company platform, you can find the most affordable moving service with the best reviews. Whether you need to move across the country or just down the road, Wise Move provides local moving services in every corner of South Africa and is a trusted service by thousands of South Africans. And with our easy-to-use, efficient platform, you’re guaranteed a seamless moving process from getting a quote and booking your move online to making the move with no hidden fees.

Get a quote today and get started on helping your elderly parent move to their new home and start their next adventure!

Get the Best Movers

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