Downsizing Tips for Seniors & Family MembersBrandermill Woods independent living angle

Downsizing Tips for Seniors & Family Members

Monday, July 3, 2023
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Downsizing can create a sense of freedom for the next step in your exciting journey into retirement! However, the process of downsizing for retirement can feel daunting, and many older adults feel a sense of sadness when letting go of personal belongings and their old ways of life. Parting with treasured items can bring up some emotions, so you may find talking to family members, friends, or another trusted person about your feelings helpful. Sometimes sharing stories or memories tied to belongings before letting them go can keep your spirits up and focused on exciting steps ahead. The Brandermill Woods team can also help you resolve any questions or worries as you transition to living in our community.

If you're supporting a loved one with downsizing, understand that this is an emotional process, so keeping a positive attitude will help your loved one immensely. . Offering practical assistance if you're able, and being a listening ear are great ways to provide support. Focusing on the positive aspects of living in a Continuing Care retirement community can also be beneficial. For example, the housekeeping and wellness services at Brandermill Woods can help promote a more comfortable lifestyle, and our amenities and activities calendar offer excellent leisure and social opportunities.

Start Early

To avoid feeling rushed or stressed, start early and outline a general plan for the process. One easy way to get started is to walk through all the rooms in your home and identify items both big and small that you no longer want or need. This initial sweep is a great jumping off point and provides a little momentum as you move onto more decisions. From there, consider working through one room of your home each week — or even just one drawer each day! You’ll feel like you’re making good progress when you can look around and check things off your list little by little.

Having everything ready ahead of time can also make moving day much more relaxing. Friends and family members can help by offering support with packing and helping sell or give away unneeded items.

Consider Your New Space

The key to creating a beautiful, uncluttered home is ensuring all your belongings have a designated space. Therefore, it's worth knowing the measurements of your new cottage or apartment to help you decide what will fit. If your existing furniture is too small for your new space, you may need to order new items. It's also wise to think carefully about how many belongings the furniture in your new residence can accommodate.

Many people find that visiting their new home can help them visualize how their possessions and furniture fit in. You can always contact the Brandermill Woods team to schedule a viewing of your property — visiting is also an excellent opportunity to explore our fitness center, leisure options, and other high-quality amenities.

Focus on Beautiful and Useful Belongings

Like most people, you've accumulated a lot of belongings over the years. Many people find that prioritizing items that are either beautiful or useful can help them sort their possessions with more clarity.

Beautiful items or things with sentimental value make your house feel like a home. Bringing artwork, soft furnishings, and beloved family photos to your new residence can immediately make it feel more familiar and comforting. Similarly, bringing all the items you use regularly can ensure you have everything you need on hand from the first day in your Independent Living community.

It can also be helpful to consider how many duplicate items you need. For instance, having enough mugs to entertain friends in your cottage or apartment is essential, but you probably don't need every mug in your collection. One way to approach this task is to prioritize favorites and items in good condition and get rid of things that are worn out or that you're not particularly fond of.

Gift Unwanted Items

Letting go of belongings can be easier if you know they're going to someone who can use and enjoy them. Donating clothes and other smaller items to charitable thrift stores means your possessions will have a second life in someone else's family.

Similarly, you can ensure the furniture you’ll no longer need goes to a good home by donating it to a nonprofit. Organizations like Good Will and Habitat for Humanity’s Restore provide people with limited means a way to furnish their homes. Friends and family can help make the process easier by finding charities requesting certain used goods.

Visit Our Community

Familiarity with your new home and surroundings can help relieve worries and make planning downsizing for retirement less stressful. At Brandermill Woods, our friendly team is always on hand to answer questions and show you around our community. Call us at (804) 744-1173 to schedule a tour and learn more about our Independent Living options.