Often getting older means downsizing…. But what do you choose to keep, and what do you get rid of, when you’ve lived in a home for 30 or 40 years? Beth Warren is an expert on serving the unique needs of senior citizens on the move. She says most older adults making this type of transition need to downsize considerably, and the organizational and physical tasks can be overwhelming. Here are her tips for helping a senior move:
- Recreate the home as much as possible, to help transition faster and with less stress.
- It may not be possible to get all furniture in the new place, but items can be located on the furniture in the same place.
- Take photos of items – for example a book case – and then place items in the same place after the move.
- Use floor and space planning to try to move as many items as possible.
- Tag and sort items. Don’t move more items than the space will hold.
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Organizing a pantry starts with sorting and grouping items, whether by product or by date. If you’ve chosen to organize your pantry because food is expiring before you can use it, then we suggest that you organize pantry food by date and then by limiting how much you purchase.
Start by checking the expiration date on all of your cans/packages. Using a black magic marker, either circle the expiration date or rewrite the expiration in larger letters. You might consider getting in the habit of circling expiration dates when you bring items home from the grocery store.
As you put items back on the shelves, remember to place your dated items together.
There are lots of little things you can do to help save your sanity during a move. Our favorite tip is to create a “Last In – First Out” Box. This means that the last box placed on the moving truck will be the first box to come off.
Here’s what you might think about putting in your “LIFO” Box.
- Are you a morning coffee junkie? Make sure you have your coffee, coffeepot, cups and whatever else you need to get the day going.
- Toiletries – we’re not talking about make-up! Don’t forget to have toilet tissue for each new bathroom, paper towels, hand soap, etc.
- Are you a clean freak? You’ll need to include sanitizing wipes, paper towels, plastic gloves, etc.
- Snacks – you may not be able to get to a store right away, so be sure to pack some non-perishable snacks that provide energy; think about nuts, dried fruit, and protein bars. If you’re not going far, have a couple of pieces of fresh fruit on hand. Last but not least, make sure you have some bottled water with you.
- Want to stay connected? Some electronics may not be vital on move day or shortly after, but most of us will want to keep our cell phones charged and have access to the internet. Pull out cell phone cords and any other necessary electronics so they are easy to find and access.
Organization plays a key role in reducing the stress of a move. One simple technique is to assign a color for each room in your new home.
Place these colored dots on the boxes to match the room they will be placed. When you get to the new home, have a large colored dot on each door/wall. The movers will quickly know what room to place each box.
Want more information on color coding for an organized move? Read our previous blog “An Organized Approach” to get a free color coding system download!
In today’s world of technology, the virtual clutter on our computers can create just as much havoc as the papers on our desk. To reduce your virtual clutter:
- Take the time to delete the emails that don’t require any further action.
- Create a folder on the hard drive for e-mails that are important to save and that you need to refer to.
- Set aside time to go through your computer files and delete them when they are no longer needed. This is the same practice as shredding old files from a file drawer.
Make sure you have a floorplan for your new residence and put it to scale if you can. Measure your furniture and then plan where each piece of furniture is going to be placed. It is so easy, the only tools you need are:
- 1/4 inch scale graph paper
- Tape measure
- Scratch paper
- Pencil (with an eraser!)
- Blank paper
If you’ve hired a moving company that charges by the hour, your move will cost less if they know exactly where that piece of furniture is going to be located. You can make this move go even faster if you number the floorplan pieces and then number the corresponding piece of furniture. This way you will know exactly where that piece of furniture will be placed. Want to simplify even more on move day? Tape a copy of the floorplan to each door in the house – then everyone will be able to see and there will be no worries about the copy being lost in the shuffle!
Want to know more about floor planning and for a step-by-step instruction on creating a hand drawn floor plan? Read our blog article How To Draw A Floorplan by Hand.
With the holidays and guest visits on the horizon, we all want our homes to appear in tip top shape. One very easy, cost-effective, and quick fix is to freshen and repair your old bathtub caulk. A little elbow grease can make your tub look like new!
1)Using a 3-in-1 tool or plastic razor, cut, and remove all caulking. You may have to use a putty knife to scrape away any remaining bits. Be careful with the amount of pressure, so you don’t scratch the paint on the bathtub or scrape the tiles.
2) Once the caulk has been removed, use a caulk remover to clean all surfaces (following manufacturer’s directions).
3) Apply new latex caulk that contains a mildewcide. Take your time and keep a steady hand and in no time – you’ll have a fresh, clean look.
4) Once the project is done, be sure to leave plenty of drying time!
How many times have you heard the expression “you only get one chance to make a first impression?” It’s no different when our house goes up for sale. Our home has become a product to be viewed. Today’s home buyers often believe that what they see on the outside of the house will be reflected on the inside of the house. Curb appeal is the buyer’s first glance to take a peek inside your home. Let’s invite them to come on in!
What can you do to make your home stand-out?
- Make sure your lawn and flower beds are well maintained. Mow your lawn, plant fresh flowers/plants, lay new mulch.
- Pressure-wash your home and clean your windows inside and out.
- Scrape and repaint cracked paint.
- Replace or remove old porch furniture.
- Repaint a worn-out front door.
- Clean your mailbox and mailbox post.
- Pull trashcans out of sight and remove all debris on the sides of your home.
- Place a new door mat and pot of fresh flowers by your front door.
Visit our website at www.redefinedliving.com and view one of our staged homes.
Want more information on staging your home?