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If you’re downsizing, you need a Senior Move Manager. Here are 5 questions to make sure you get the right one.

Why do downsizing seniors need a Senior Move Manager? 

Here’s why:  People who have lived in their homes for 30, 40 or 50 years have amassed a ton of stuff. They can’t just pack up and move. They have to sort through it, decide what to do with it, and then take care of letting it go. It’s too much to manage on their own, and their kids are too busy to help.

Senior Move Managers assist downsizers through the whole process, from clearing out their old house to settling into their new one. Here are some important questions to help you find the right Senior Move Manager:

1. How long have you been a Senior Move Manager — and what’s your previous background?
Every Senior Move Manager has a unique story. 

Senior Move Managers have a wide variety of professional backgrounds. Some have experience in health care, nursing or social work. Others come from corporate careers in project management, marketing or accounting. Look for someone whose background can help you, and who has enough Senior Move Management experience to make you feel confident they’ll handle your job with knowledge and ease.

2. Can you provide references?
Speaking with other people who have been through process will help you feel more comfortable.

Think about your most critical concerns.  Do you need help deciding what to keep? Figuring out what to do with everything? Determining how to distribute your possessions equitably between your kids? See if you can speak with people the Senior Move Manager has worked with who have faced issues similar to yours. (You’ll probably get the best information if you ask for clients she’s helped recently.)

3. Do you offer customized floor plans? 
When you can get a vision of your new home, it will be much easier to leave your old one.

When moving to a smaller place, it’s critical to think about what will fit in your space, not just what you’d like to keep. Having a customized floor plan for your new home makes it easy to see which pieces have to go and which can stay.

4.  Can you help me set up my new home? 
Choose someone who can help you through the whole process.

Moving begins when you start sorting through your things and ends when you’re settled in your new place. Unpacking and finding a place for everything in a new home can be exhausting. Make sure your Senior Move Manager offers move-in help, including managing movers, unpacking boxes, hanging pictures and setting up electronics.

5.  Are you a member of the National Association of Senior Move Mangers?
NASMM professionals have committed to a standard of ethics and a code of conduct.  

Senior Move Managers are professionals. And the best Senior Move Managers are certified by the National Association of Senior Move Mangers. When you hire someone with NASMM after their name, you know you’re hiring someone who has invested the time and energy to become the best she can be.

If you, or someone you know, need help downsizing or making their home comfortable to age-in-place, please let them know I would be happy to answer these and all questions about the process. I am an Interior Designer, proud member of NASMM, and a former project manager who has been helping seniors move for more than five years. I would love to help you!

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