Friday, March 20, 2020

When You Support Small Business, You are Supporting a Dream


The outbreak of the coronavirus COVID-19 has affected our lives in every way.  It is understandable that during times like this, we are all feeling varying levels of fear and anxiety as well as being overwhelmed by constantly changing media messages regarding the spread of the virus.  But, there is something we can do! The following article by Maurie Backman describes four ways we can help small businesses during these tough times. Being a small business ourselves, this hits pretty close to home!

4 Ways You Can Support Small Businesses (and Their Employees) Right Now
Small businesses are hurting. Here's what you can do to help.

As COVID-19 continues to wreak havoc across the U.S., and the globe, small business owners are growing increasingly concerned. Retail stores are seeing less foot traffic, and some are seeing none at all. And with restaurants in many cities being forced to shut down or limit their services, countless small business owners and employees are no doubt in for a financial shock -- one many will ultimately struggle to recover from.
So what can you do to support local businesses during these trying times? These moves on your part could really make a difference.

1. Buy gift cards
Maybe you're not looking to visit your favorite salon in the midst of a major health outbreak, since your haircut or manicure can clearly wait. But what you can do is buy a gift card to that salon and use it in the future, once things calm down. That way, the business gets some money in immediately that it can use to pay its vendors and bills, and you'll have the benefit of having pre-paid a service you know you'll need eventually, thereby carving out wiggle room in your budget later on.
2. Order takeout or delivery from restaurants
Many restaurants have been ordered to not offer dine-in service as the country grapples with COVID-19. And chances are, you'd rather not eat out at a restaurant anyway. But if your local go-to food establishments are still offering takeout and delivery service, you can support them by placing orders. If you're concerned about food safety, call and ask what measures are being taken to ensure that sick workers aren't handling food, and that surfaces and containers are being kept clean.
3. Help advertise
Many small businesses struggle to get the word out that they even exist, so now's the time to help drive more customers to them -- especially businesses that can move their models online temporarily to maintain cash flow. For example, if you have a local toy store that's shifting to delivery mode, tell people about it. Chances are, parents with bored kids stuck at home will bite.
4. Tip generously
The people who deliver your takeout meals? They may be waiters who are seeing their income slashed. The person who drops off goods at your door from a local shop? That could be a store clerk whose only option right now is to use his or her vehicle to make home deliveries in the hopes of still getting paid. These are trying times for the people who work for small businesses, and many risk future wage cuts if things continue this way much longer. You can help, therefore, by being a bit more generous on the tipping front.
Right now, millions of Americans are in a financially precarious spot as COVID-19 destroys all semblance of normality. If you're in a position where you're not losing your income during this madness, consider paying it forward to the best of your ability. The frustrating thing about the current situation is that we don't have much control over it, but one thing you can control is the way you step up and help others who may be in need.

Sunday, May 12, 2019



                                WE ARE SIX!
Happy Anniversary as we celebrate six years as Smooth Transitions of St. Louis! We look back and reflect on how blessed we have been to assist several hundred families transition to a new adventure. We have taught many lessons in right-sizing and have learned a lot more from our clients. There is no right or wrong on what MUST stay or go with you and your kids are a lot more interested in that small item that has more everyday memories than your complete set of china for twelve.  In celebration of six years as senior move managers, Smooth Transitions of St. Louis wants to share our LIST OF SIX and offer tips on everything from how to talk to your parents about downsizing to how to enjoy the new adventure!
We are here to help and can do “as little or as much” as you want us to do. Let us manage your family’s stress to the new address with a smooth transition!

1.     Start the transition conversation early before a crisis happens.
2.     Don’t start by telling them what to do.  They must take ownership.
3.     Offer to get involved in order to get a better picture of their finances and living conditions.
4.     Help with everyday tasks to open the door for conversations.
5.     Acknowledge their feelings about their home.
6.     Offer to take them on a tour of retirement communities.
TIP:  Nearly 70%of households 85 years and older live in homes that lack the essential features that allow them to live safely.  Bring in a senior move manager (third party) like Smooth Transitions. Your parents may be more open to hearing about options from someone who can provide expertise and objectivity.

1.     Your home outgrew you-it is too big!
2.     Your home has much needed and costly repairs.
3.     The family no longer lives at home.  The house is lonely-no one to talk to.
4.     Chance to reduce debt and shift investment.
5.     Mentally freeing
6.     You just don’t need it!
TIP:  Older adults have usually not moved for 30, 40 or 50 years and need to downsize considerably. They are struggling.  But, are hesitant to admit it.  Let a senior move manager (Smooth Transitions) guide you through the process to ease the emotional and physical stress associated with moving.

1.     Draft a design of your new place.  Focus on what furniture to take; not what to leave.
2.     Place green stickers on items going to the new location.  Sorting is the most challenging process.  Concentrate on items consistent with the design, functionality and treasures.
3.     If everything is a treasure; nothing is a treasure.  Do not overcrowd the new home.
4.     The low hanging fruit or downsizing opportunities exist in the kitchen, clothing, basement, and garages.  Remember, no storage at your new location, which means basement and garage stuff is out.
5.     Don’t forget the pictures.  They provide the finishing touch.
6.     Do not worry about your remaining valuables.  They can be gifted to the FAMILY, sold via ESTATE SALE, DONATED, and then finally DISPOSED.
TIP:  Pour a cup of tea or glass of wine and start sorting (green stickers) by confronting the smallest room.  Sort only or you will get bogged down.  Memories will abound! Enjoy the process.  Have fun.  Once you get the hang of it, graduate to a larger room.
1.     The residence should not be present during the move-in because of the potential hazard of moving furniture and too much stress.  This also sets up the “BIG REVEAL” at the end of the day.  Select a family member or rely on your senior move manager to coordinate activity in their absence.
2.     Furniture placement is key.  Have one family member become comfortable with the actual look of the apartment while the movers are still present.  The results should be consistent with the design and appealing to the residences’ wishes.
3.     Many food items at the old home are outdated and should not be included in the move.  As a result, it is appropriate to take canned goods, paper products, cleaning, laundry, etc. and then have a shopping day to fill in the voids.  Remember, the community serves many meals and it is not necessary to have an abundance of food inventory or cooking utensils.
4.     The television, phones and medications MUST be functional the day of the move-in.  The residence will need them for both enjoyment, security and health, respectively.
5.     Once furniture is placed, boxes unpacked, contents put away, and the final design has been implemented...then and only then, hang pictures.  The pictures are the icing on the cake.  However, they should not be placed until everything else is a go.
6.     Be kind to yourself- you did it! Now, enjoy your new home and manage the balance of the home transition (FAMILY, SELL, DONATIONS & DISPOSAL) from a position of strength.
TIP:  Senior Move Managers® minimize the chaos and stress associated with moving by addressing all aspects of the transitional process (Move, Family, Sell, Donations, Disposal). Consider using Smooth Transitions to customize your unique plan and make the transition easier.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Memories for sale:What is a household worth?

Memories for sale: what's a household worth?

Story by
Marni Jameson
It's so true: Some things in life you just can't put a price on. Until you have to. When it's up to you to liquidate your parents' treasure-filled home, you need to price the priceless.
How much for that baby grand piano Mom used to play? How much for the sideboard that served up every Thanksgiving dinner you can remember. How much for the porch swing Dad built?
When selling is both unthinkable and necessary, it's nice to have outside experts.
Such reason did not prevail last year when I cleared out my parents' home several months after they had moved into assisted living. I did not have experts. I had myself, my sister-in-law, one week and a learning curve that didn't curve but shot straight up like a flagpole.
Who else could do the job justice? I reasoned. Plus, I didn't want to give anyone a cut of the profits, which were going straight into my parents' long-term care fund.
But looking back, I see the value of experts.
They knew then what I know now, and wish I'd known. For starters, they know how emotional, irrational and deluded those of us selling our parents' belongings -- heck even our own stuff -- are when estimating value. But those were our baby bibs!
MaxSold founder Barry Gordon put it bluntly: "Things are worth what people will pay." A four-year-old Canadian company now in the United States, MaxSold ( clears out homes. The company sends in a team that organizes household items in batches or 'lots,' photographs them, then uses social media to sell them locally through online auctions.
"People think that when they put their price on items, they have control of the price. They don't," Gordon said. "The buying market will determine the value." Holding out for a price can leave you holding onto the item.
I know I turned down several offers for my parents' antique marble-topped nightstand, which I now have parked at a family friend's house across the country.
Clinging has its costs, especially if you need to ship an item, move it, or heaven forbid, put it in paid storage. (Dear readers, please, before you get a storage locker, call me. I will talk you off the ledge.)
Gordon cites this example. Say someone has a dining room set and would feel awful if they sold if for anything less than $2,000. A buyer offers $800, which the seller turns down. Then, because there's no room for it, the set goes in storage. Three years later, at $100 a month, the seller has paid $3,600 to hang onto it and finally sells it for $500.
Better to yank the Band-Aid off now, even if it hurts. And it will.
Although no two households are alike, in Gordon's experience, the contents of the average North American home, after the family has taken out what they want to keep and paid the liquidator, yields between $3,000 and $10,000. He's heard other liquidation professionals say the average house yields about $5,900.
"Our process is not designed to replace the important work," said Gordon, referring to the sifting, sorting and saving family members must do first.
But once the family decides what won't stay, if they're not up to selling items themselves, they need to step aside.
"Dealing with a family home paralyzes people," said Gordon. "It can takes the toughest, most organized, efficient people and slow them to an absolute standstill."
His advice: "Don't work yourself into a frenzy trying to control things you can't. What you can control is how much of your life you put into the process." Here's what else you can control:
  • Your options. When clearing out a home, many families, including mine, hold an estate sale, where individual items are tagged and the public is invited on a particular day. The sale can - and did -- create a chaotic environment, which is hard to control, especially if a lot of people show up. Others work with a bulk buyer, who pays one price to take everything away. What you lose in profit you gain in convenience. A liquidator, like MaxSold, is a hybrid. It batches and auctions off goods from the house and reports all sales to the client.
  • The location. More than 99 percent of household belongings sell nearby, said Gordon, whose company uses 35 social media avenues to promote auctions locally.
  • Timing. How long families take to clear a home ranges widely and is highly personal. "I've seen clients go through the process in light speed, burning through the sorting in a day, and others take several years, and still not make much progress," said Gordon. "A good healthy time frame is probably a couple of weeks."
  • Package deals. Bundling items is a tactic I wish I'd done more. Although I put items for the estate sale together - mom's two dozen dried flower arrangements, her 40-some flowerpots - I tagged each item rather than said $50 for all. You'll move more merchandise faster, and more efficiently, if you make groups: all figurines, all items in the cleaning closet, all pots and pans. "Buyers can't pick and choose," Gordon said. "They buy the lot."
  • Your reserves. In an auction, a reserve is a price below which a seller will not sell. "We don't allow that," said Gordon. "We ask sellers if they are done with the items. If they are, we sell." It's a trap to think that having a reserve ensures you get the price you want. Only place one if you're prepared to keep the item.
  • Your goal. If your goal is to clear the house, accept that you may not get top dollar, but that you will get what the market is paying. "Clients need to release themselves to the competitive market," Gordon said.
Syndicated columnist and speaker Marni Jameson is the author of "House of Havoc" and "The House Always Wins" (Da Capo Press). Contact her through

Friday, January 26, 2018

Senior Friendly Guide to Downsizing

I recently read a “downsizing” article from GoodCall®, a company whose mission is to give the reader the knowledge, tips and tools to make “good calls”. There are as many lists on" Tips to Downsize" as there are seniors looking to downsize!  Although most articles offer the same basic advice, I always find it interesting to read the different perspectives from which they are written.
The article acknowledges that most seniors know there will come a day when they’ll have to downsize, either to simplify their lifestyle, cut costs, be closer to children and grandchildren, or to address medical needs. Following are their tips to make downsizing easier.
Senior-Friendly Guide to Downsizing
1. Start early. Give yourself plenty of time for this process, because it will inevitably take longer than you expect. Take your time, and don’t try to sort through your entire house in one day or weekend. A couple of weeks to a month is a more realistic timeline. Take it one room at a time, and take breaks throughout.  
 “Go through each item one by one,” says Alison Kero, CEO of ACK Organizing in Brooklyn. “It’s important to give everything you own your attention for at least a second or two.  It will also help you develop a great decision making system because you’re learning how to focus and then choose, if even for a second or two.”  If you aren’t rushed, you’ll find downsizing to be much less stressful.
 2. Start small. You probably already have a couple of things in mind to toss out in the kitchen or garage, but avoid diving into such a big room at the very beginning. You have years and years of things to sort through. Start in an area with little emotional attachment. The laundry room or linen closet are good options. Understand your needs. If you’re moving into a two-bedroom house, four sets of sheets should be plenty. The rest can go.  
 “Garages/attics/basements are notorious for being the hardest rooms to tackle,” says Debra Blue, co-founder and CEO of Blue Moon Estate Sales. “These rooms tend to accumulate all the old hobbies, boxes, old holiday decorations, and clutter. They’re also known to be rather uncomfortable spaces. In the summer it’s too hot, winter it’s too cold, and in the springtime it can be too humid.”
 3. Eliminate rooms you won’t have in your new home. If you’re moving to an apartment or townhome, you might not have a garage or office space. Nearly everything in those spaces will need to be sold, donated, tossed, or relocated to other rooms. These areas might also be good items for consignment or Craigslist sales; nice office furniture and outdoor tools are more valuable than old sofas or mattresses.  “Organize backwards,” suggests Jamie Novak, author of ‘Keep This Toss That.’ “A common suggestion is to pick out the stuff you don’t want and pack the rest. Try the opposite – pack the keepers. What’s left can be looked at and most can be shared or donated.”
 4. Get rid of duplicates. You’ll find this is especially true in your kitchen. You have two or three spatulas and ladles; a couple of oversized stock pots; four different sized cookie sheets; a blender, a food processor, a coffee grinder, and a nut chopper. Now’s the time to reduce the clutter. If you’re feeling wary of handing off that second roasting pan because you use it every Christmas (but at no other time during the year), consider giving it to a child or grandchild who can bring it over for the holiday and take it home when they leave.
 5. Only make Yes or No piles – no Maybes. When you’re going through years of belongings, some things are going to tug at your heartstrings, and you’ll be tempted to make a third pile of things to keep if you have space. Don’t fall for it. You’ll end up with a Maybe pile that’s bigger than either of the other two, and you haven’t really made any progress in sorting, just moved it across the room. Take a hard look at every item you pick up. If you use it regularly or expect to in your new home, keep it. If it’s been sitting in a closet or on a shelf for a year or more, it’s time to let it go.
 “If you already weren’t using it, or didn’t like it, why on earth would you want to pack it up and schlep it to your next house?” says Hazel Thornton, of New Mexico-based Organized for Life. “I know it sounds silly, but people do it all the time. Moving isn’t cheap, either; do you really want to pay extra to move stuff you don’t even want? Don’t delude yourself by telling yourself you’ll deal with it at your next destination. No, you won’t.”
 6. Reduce collections creatively. It can be hard to let go of a lifetime collection of porcelain dolls or snow globes from all your vacations, but they will eat up a lot of space or else end up stored in a box where you’ll never see them. Instead, pick a couple to keep and take high-resolution photos of the rest, then have them made into a photo book that can sit on your coffee table or mantle. You and guests will be able to enjoy them without the clutter. There are also tech tools or websites such as that will convert those boxes of photo negatives to digital. 
“This is a great way to thin out big collections and focus on the one that really brings joy. When it comes to the rest of your collections or newer ephemera, take pictures with your smartphone! You’ll enjoy it more when it comes up in your digital photos than it being stashed in a drawer or box. The memories will continue to live on through photos and conversations with loved ones.”
 7. Don’t be afraid to sell things yourself. With Craigslist, Ebay, numerous smartphone apps, yard sales, and an abundance of consignment shops, selling your belongings has never been easier. You probably won’t make a ton of money on most items, so consider how much time you want to invest. Yard sales are usually faster, but items won’t sell for as much. Craigslist has its drawbacks, but you’ll have a much wider audience and can probably get more for your stuff. Consignment is a good option for high-end furniture, handbags and other accessories; prices are reasonable, and they’ll sometimes pick up heavy furniture for you. If you aren’t handy with a computer, your grandchildren can probably help. But if that all sounds like more than you care to deal with, hiring a firm to run an estate sale might be your best bet.
 8. Consider legacy gifts early. Is there an antique clock in your foyer that you plan to one day leave to your son? Maybe a china collection your granddaughter adores? If there are certain heirlooms or pieces you plan to leave to your family in your will, consider instead giving those gifts now. This has two benefits: you’ll get the items out of our way, and you’ll be able to enjoy the feeling of giving those items to your loved ones now. While you’re at it, find out if there are any items your children want that you don’t know about – you might find an easy way to make them happy and lighten your load. 
9. Allow some time to reminisce. While you’re cleaning and sorting, there will be some days when you want to stop emptying the kids’ bedrooms and just look through the kindergarten drawings, soccer trophies, and once-prized stuffed animals. It’s OK to pause and let the nostalgia take over for a bit. Cry if you need to, or move on to another room and come back. This is why you started early – just don’t let it prevent you from eventually getting the job done.
 “I always ask my clients how the item at hand makes them feel,” says Morgan Ovens, of Haven Home in Los Angeles. “If it brings up any negative feelings, let it go. If it brings happiness of course it stays! The idea here is to only be surrounded by things you absolutely love. Isn’t that a great goal?”
 10. Use this as a chance to bond. Invite the kids and grandkids over for the weekend. Talk to the young ones about where you bought your favorite trinkets. Tell them about your family’s heirlooms. Let them help pack, ask questions, and spend time with you. Get help posting items for sale online. It can be one more moment your family shares together in the house you’ve loved – before you start making those memories together in your next home. Remember that it’s your family that’s important for the memories you cherish, not the stuff around you.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

There is an App for that!

THERE IS AN APP FOR THAT!  How many times have you heard that phrase and by the way, who creates all these apps?  My theory is it is some very creative people with a lot of time on their hands!  But, they can be very entertaining!  I collected a few I thought were quite unusual!

1.) NOTHING- this app does absolutely nothing; there is also a Pro version for $.99 that does more nothing
2.) S.M.T.H.-Send me to Heaven; this app is a game where you throw your phone upwards and it calculates the height of the throw
3.) IShaver PRO- is a virtual shaver; to start shaving, just hold on the button and virtual hair will start falling.
4.) MILK THE COW- Download the app and fill the bucket with milk in the shortest time possible.
5.) HOLD ON-See how long you can hold a button on your phone without lifting your finger up.
6.) BINKY- there’s an endless stream of random stuff you can scroll through. You can like and comment on various random 
7.) BLOWER-The app basically uses sound frequencies to blow air out of your smartphone’s speakers.

I was talking to one of our Smooth Transition team members the other day who is also a realtor; she was telling me about a new app used by real estate professionals to predict when you are going to move out of your home! The app uses information collected about you such as how long you have lived in your home, your age, the age of your children, etc. to determine statistically when you will sell your home. This app knows what you are going to do before you do!
Nevertheless, we all better start cleaning out our homes sooner than later! You never know when someone has used the app and knocks on your door to announce that you have lived in your home long enough and it is time to move, which is exactly what happened to us when we sold our home! We had thought about “someday in the future” because our kids were grown and on their own and we were reaching an age that the home was just too big to handle. We met all the criteria of the realtor “magic ball”.  The knock on the door came and the rest is history!
With this in mind, I have a timely article from U.S. News and World Report on “6 Steps to Declutter your Home.” We all need to be ready when that knock on the door comes! Enjoy!

                      6 Steps to Declutter Your Home
                                                           By Tom Sightings

You’re retiring. The kids have moved out. Sometime within the next few years you’re probably going to relocate – whether it’s from a four-bedroom suburban house to a two-bedroom condo, or a two-bedroom condo to an independent living facility. So you no longer need all that stuff crowding your living room, filling up your basement and spilling out of your closets.
Besides, after you’re gone, you don’t want to leave a legacy to your children of a house full of junk, and the long, hard, emotionally taxing job of cleaning out what you should have taken care of years ago.
Decluttering is a move to take control of your life. It allows you to control your physical environment, of course, but also your future. But it’s a big job. So take it one step at a time. One rule of thumb suggests you budget one full day of decluttering for each year that you’ve lived in your house. So if it’s your family home where you raised your kids and lived for 30 years, be prepared to spend an entire month cleaning out, paring down and straightening up.
But you don’t have to do it all at once. Some experts suggest taking a year or two to complete the process. That gives you plenty of time to plan, reconsider and notify your loved ones of your new commitment to an organized life. Here are six steps to help you get on with the job:
1. Warn your children. Invite them, well ahead of time, to range through your house and take what they want. But also insist that they remove any and all of their own materials, including the boxes of old schoolwork, trophies, souvenirs, stuffed animals and textbooks. These things belong to them now, not to you.
2. Tackle one space at a time. It’s easy to get bogged down if you do a little of this and a little of that. So start small. Clean out a closet. Then organize a bathroom, or one of the kid’s bedrooms. The hardest jobs will be your own bedroom, the basement and the kitchen, unless you’re moving into an assisted living facility where all your meals are provided, in which case the kitchen clean up should be easy because all of it goes.
3. Touch something once, make a decision. As you go through your old clothes, books and furniture, decide whether you should get rid of an item or need to keep it. But the key to making progress is to make the decision right away. If you need one suit, then decide which one to keep and dispose of the others. Try not to hem and haw, change your mind or postpone the decision, or that one day of decluttering per year could turn out to be two or three days per year. If you hesitate on too many items the decluttering may never get done.
4. Make four piles. Decide what you want to keep and put that in the keep pile. Then decide right away what to do with everything else, and make a give pile, a sell pile and a trash pile. Once you've decided to dispose of an item, don’t waste a lot of time or emotional energy deciding on which pile, just choose one. If you make a mistake and put something in the trash pile instead of the sell pile, what's the harm? Be realistic. If you tried to sell it, you probably wouldn’t have sold it for much anyway.
5. Take photographs. The hardest decisions are the emotional ones. If you can’t bear to get rid of something you really don't need, then take a picture of it. Put on that special dress, take a picture and then give the dress away. When faced with giving up old license plates, a shelf of trophies and a wonderful old oriental rug that will never fit into your new place, take a picture and keep the photo with you always. Then make sure to send copies of the photos to your kids.
6. Hire a professional. For most people, decluttering is a do-it-yourself project, perhaps with some help from the kids or a friend, and we would have it no other way. But sometimes the job might seem too daunting. There are professionals who will help you, for a fee, ranging from $35 to $100 a hour. Contact the National Association of Senior Move Managers or the National Association of Professional Organizers for referrals to local professionals.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Ten Tips to Downsizing and “De-Stressing” Your Move

 The first question many clients ask during the consultation with a senior move manager references the cost of completing the project.  The good faith estimate is principally based on the services you request and the amount of “stuff” that is involved.  Ultimately, price is based on the senior move manager’s time.

Many clients require full service because they in fact have a lot of “stuff” and have no desire or ability to complete the move themselves.  This approach eliminates most of the physical and mental stress.  But, it also costs the most money.  For the individuals that want to manage cost by getting involved and managing some of the move themselves, NASMM (National Association of Senior Move Managers) has develop ten tips for downsizing.  Following all or part of the these suggestions will minimize the scope of your project and as a result, better manage your cost of completing the move.

1).  Start Early – End Happy:  It’s never too early to begin the downsizing process.  Begin by focusing on typical problem areas such as the attic, basement, garage, closets, or file cabinets.
2).  Get Generous:  Since you can’t take everything to your new home, now is the time to make arrangements to “gift” some of your treasures to special people in your life including, and especially family, helpful neighbors, friends, favorite organizations, or church/synagogue.
3).  Save your memories:  You may have boxes of old photographs from every holiday, vacation, and birthday party attended.  What do you do with them?  Consider the following ways to preserve family photos and stories:  a customized process of audio and video recording called Life-Storying.  Copy your special photos on to CDs, or try your hand at scape booking.  Also, services now exist that will take all your photo, slides, and videos and do it for you.
4).  New Looks for Books:  If you own large quantities of books, you need to spend time downsizing your collections.  Books occupy lots of space and are heavy to move.  Consider donations to libraries or senior centers, or sales to used bookstores.  Call on a book dealer for older books with potential value.
5).  Use it Up…Don’t move it out:  Take an inventory of your canned goods, frozen foods, and paper products.  Plan to use as many of these products as you can before moving.  If you simply have too many items, thinking about passing them on to a local food pantry.  Check to see if the Senior Move Manager you hire participates in the NASMM Move for Hunger Initiative.
6).  Recycle the Toxins:  Take time to put together a box or two of household, yard, and automotive cleaning products, as well as paint products that are considered hazardous.  Visit for more information on hazardous collection in your area.
7).  Don’t Lose Touch:  Create a list of people, places, and utilities/services that need to be notified of your upcoming change in address.
8).  Space Plan Ahead:  Most Senior Move Managers can provide you with a customized floor plan of your new residence.  A floor plan will help you determine the pieces of furniture that will fit in your new home, and the best location of each.  Knowing which pieces will fit in your new space will help you in your rightsizing process.

9).  Pack a Survival Bag:  Put together a survival bag for move day.  It might include personal needs (medications, eyeglasses, toiletries, change of clothes, important papers, etc.); kitchen needs (snacks, drinks, folding chair, disposable cups/plates); basic tools (hammer, screwdriver, flashlight, tape, etc.); cleaning supplies (sponge, paper towels, soap, etc.); and payment for mover – be sure you know which form of payment they accept.

10).  Ask for Help:  Don’t be too proud or independent to ask for help.  Moving is not easy and you shouldn’t do it all yourself.  But, don’t wait until the last minute to ask for assistance. 

Some of these downsizing tips require months to accomplish.  The best place to find help is through the National Association of Senior Move Managers ( or Smooth Transitions ( if you are located in the St. Louis area.    

Friday, July 29, 2016

Helping the Elderly Downsize: A Must Read

Helping the Elderly Downsize

New York Times

Kaya Laterman

July 22, 2016

During the last several years, I have attempted to educate readers and clients about the features and benefits of senior move managers as they work to downsize their homes.  Listed below is a link to an excellent article that appeared in the New York Times that summarizes the challenges to downsizing and the benefits of using a senior move manager.  Enjoy…