United States: Consultants
Assist Seniors with Moving
March 01, 2007
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seniors would prefer to remain in their own homes as they age, sometimes
a move into a smaller place, a retirement community or a nursing
home is necessary for safety, health or other reasons. Moving can
be overwhelming, both physically and emotionally. Many older adults
have not moved in 30 or more years, finding the process especially
stressful. Luckily more and more seniors are discovering a new resource
called senior move managers or (SMMs)-moving consultants
that can help them through such transitions.
live far away from their children or have no surviving family. Adult
children may be divided between their careers or their own family
obligations. In some cases the family may already be emotionally
and physically drained from a death or illness precipitating the
move. By hiring an SMM, seniors can get help with the many organizational
and physical tasks associated with moving.
SMMs help seniors
by first developing an overall move plan. They help with organizing,
sorting and downsizing, including the difficulty of parting with
possessions. SMMs often arrange garage sales, help pack and hire
movers as well as help unpack and set up the new home.
President of Moving Solutions, a Senior Move Manager Company, says
the most rewarding aspect of her business is the clients. Most
often they will comment, I couldnt believe your staff
member took such pains to make my new home pretty (or safe).
Nothing is more important than that.
Parting with loved possessions can be especially difficult, Novak
explains. By using a SMM, seniors can donate their things to charitable
causes. Its much easier when you know its going to someone
who will really use and appreciate it, says Novak.
There are currently
close to 200 SMMs in the United States. The industry is rapidly
growing, particularly among baby boomers, most of them women with
backgrounds in gerontology, social work, health care or psychology.
Others have finished one career and are looking to start their own
business. SMMs even have their own trade group, the National Association
of Senior Move Managers (NASMM), claiming 110 members.
There are many
reasons that make hiring an SMM a good idea, says Donna Willman,
a founding member of NASMM, The most important is probably
peace of mind-for the senior and for their family. Moving is stressful
at any age, but when you add the decisions required for a downsizing
you add a ton of work plus the sense of loss to the mix. An
experienced and understanding SMM can be an objective third party
and help seniors and their families through the process, says Willman.
For many older adults facing a life transition, SMMs are the perfect
solution to a some-times difficult and stressful situation.
For more information, visit the NASMM website at: http://www.nasmm.com/.
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