Tools to help you downsize in retirement

Once you’ve made the decision to make the move to a retirement community, the process of downsizing and physically making the move begins. If it all feels bigger than you can handle on your own, you’re in luck — there are professionals whose job it is to help pave the way for the next phase of your retirement.

Here are some resources you can turn to make managing your move, well, more manageable.

On-site community assistance

Retirement communities often have existing relationships with local move management companies, or a list of those that come highly recommended by other residents. They may even have a move-in coordinator on staff.

In addition to these resources and a wide range of expertise, Vi and many other communities also offer new residents access to floor-plan consultants who can help you determine how much you’ll need to pare down your belongings to live comfortably in your new space. 

Before moving from Sarasota, Fla., into their villa at Vi at The Glen, residents Ray and Joan Racelis spoke with a floor-plan consultant and hired a move manager to take care of all the details, making their cross-country journey a breeze.

And remember, in a retirement community, your living space includes more than just your personal residence. The entire community is your home, from restaurants and bars to theaters, art studios, swimming pools and fitness centers.

Learn about how the Racelises downsized before moving into Vi at The Glen
Ray and Joan Racelis smile in their villa.
Senior move managers

If you’re in the process of selling your existing home, ask your real-estate agent if they have any contacts with move managers who could step in to assist with downsizing and other logistics of your move post-sale.

You might also look to an organization like the National Association of Senior Move Managers, which offers a searchable database of vetted professionals that can assist in your move from start to finish, including disposing of unwanted items, unpacking and setting up your new home.

Beyond the tactical stress move managers can alleviate, these professionals also have the benefit of being a third party beyond your family. All their guidance comes from a practical, objective place, with your best interests at heart.

Charitable organizations

You may be able to offset the cost of a local move management company through a charitable donation during your move. Move managers can work with their clients to determine which items can be donated to families in need, resulting in a tax deduction.

A woman sits on a small pile of moving boxes.

While Vi at Palo Alto residents Steve and Beverly Docter were waiting for their apartment to become available, they slowly moved through the downsizing process — including making donations to Goodwill, Habitat for Humanity and their local library.

Decluttering your home to prepare for the next stage of your life doesn’t have to strike fear in your heart. We've even got room-by-room downsizing tips to help you. And the end result — a clearer home, and maybe even a clearer mind — may actually bring you joy.

The sooner you start, the sooner you can begin to focus on living life your way. Ask any Vi resident!

Questions? Start here.

Vi communities offer hands-on help to their new residents, from local recommendations for help with downsizing and preparations to on-site move-in coordination and more.

Want to know more about how Vi can make your transition to senior living simpler and less stressful?