There are a few reasons why you may be in the position where you are moving an elderly parent. Perhaps they are going into an assisted living home or downsizing into an apartment because that old house is just too much upkeep now. Maybe they live out of town, but due to their health, you think it is a good idea for them to move closer. Whatever the case is, this checklist will ensure a smooth experience.

2 Months Prior to Moving

  • Begin sorting through the belongings of elderly parents to determine what can be sold, donated, or handed down. In most cases, this will be a big project, especially if they are going into a place where they won’t need their furniture or décor. Be patient. It will likely be hard for them to let go of things they have had for so many years, especially if these items are attached to fond memories. The first day will be the hardest. Only do one room. Let them have some time to process it. This is when it usually hits them that they are making such a big change.
  • Start reading moving reviews. This is already a stressful event for everyone. There is no need to add to this stress by having movers that will make the experience a disaster. You don’t want to make the decision solely on price. Moving reviews should play a leading role in your decision.
  • Collect packing supplies. You can pick up free moving boxes in a few places. Then, you’ll just need tape and labels. You probably have enough towels and linens to wrap breakables with.
  • Start acquiring insurance, financial, legal, and medical records. If they have a pet, vet records can be added to this, too.

1 Month Prior to Moving

  • Get moving quotes from the companies that had moving reviews you were impressed with. If you know the exact day or week the move is to take place, you can actually do this step even earlier. This should be finalized by the one-month mark though.
  • Start packing items that are not being used, such as seasonal clothing, books, etc.
  • Have a yard sale or donate all those items the two of you decided wouldn’t be needed.

2 Weeks Prior to Moving

  • Cancel or transfer newspaper and magazine subscriptions.
  • Contact utility companies to schedule service hook up, transfer, or disconnect.

1 Week Prior to Moving

  • Confirm the movers. Even professionals with the best moving reviews can have a scheduling mishap.
  • Pack an essentials box with everything they will need for at least 24 hours.
  • Make sure any medications they are taking get refilled and/or transferred to a closer pharmacy.

Moving Day

  • Have payment ready for the movers.
  • Drop parent at a friend or relative’s house, if the process will be too much for them to handle.
  • Fill out a move-in checklist at the new place with the landlord, if applicable.
  • Unpack essentials to make them comfortable. You can come back the next day or during the week to finish. Alternately, you can hire packers to do this.

The week after it is a good idea to take them for a drive around the area, so they know where the closest grocery store, gas station, hospital, library, etc., is. Maybe even go for a walk and note landmarks, so your elderly parent is comfortable exploring.