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Senior Moving Services Aim to Make Downsizing Less Stressful

For seniors, moving to a new home – perhaps downsizing to a 55+ apartment, retirement community, or assisted living facility – carries unique challenges. A senior move can be particularly stressful and emotional if someone is leaving behind a family home with decades of memories. That’s where a relatively new profession – senior moving services – can help.

movers with boxes, to illustrate article on senior moving services

Who Are Senior Move Managers?

“Senior Move Managers” is a trademark of the National Association of Senior Move Managers or NASMM. The organization formed in 2002 and has grown from 16 member companies to more than 900. So, keep in mind that a company that provides senior moving services might not be an official Senior Move Manager.

Why hire an official Senior Move Manager? NASMM members must meet specific criteria, including having liability insurance, passing educational courses, and signing and abiding by a code of ethics.

What Do Senior Moving Services Do?

downsizing checklist, to illustrate article on senior moving services

Senior moving companies are more than just movers. They may not even be an actual moving company. In such a case, they will work with a moving company to handle the physical move.

What sets senior moving companies apart is compassion for the emotional aspects of downsizing and moving for older adults. The National Association of Senior Move Managers notes that its membership includes people with backgrounds in gerontology, social work, and nursing.

Think of a senior moving company as the person or people who handle all the planning, organizing, and executing of a move – but with sensitivity to the unique stresses and logistics involved in a senior move.

Senior moving companies’ services vary, but according to the NASMM, senior movers might do the following:

  • Plan a move
  • Organize and sort
  • Arrange estate sales, donations, consignment, or auctions
  • Interview, schedule and oversee movers and packers
  • Arrange shipping and storage
  • Unpack and set up the new home
  • Help pick a real estate agent and prepare the old home for sale

How Much Do Senior Moving Services Cost?

The cost of senior moving services depends on a variety of factors. For example, transitioning from a five-bedroom house to assisted living will involve more work than transitioning from a two-bedroom house to an independent-living apartment.

Another factor in the cost is the degree of family involvement – that is, how much family members are able or willing to help. You can hire a senior moving specialist to handle just some parts of the move.

Furthermore, senior moving companies charge in different ways. Some charge by the hour while others charge per-project. A Wisconsin-based senior moving company on its website says that, nationally, rates range from $40-$125 an hour, and that typical jobs cost from $1,000-$5,000. This company says its jobs usually cost between $1,500 and $3,000.

So, as you can see, the cost of senior move management can vary greatly. Shop around if you can. The NASMM says its members will always give you a written estimate first. Ask for that before you agree to pay anybody!

Where Do You Find Senior Moving Services?

senior couple moving, to illustrate article on senior moving services

Senior moving companies are available across the country. The easiest way to find one is by visiting the NASMM website, which lets you search by ZIP code or state. On Google or another search engine, try searching with terms such as “senior move managers,” “senior moving services,” or “senior moving companies,” along with the name of your city or state.

Moving may not be easy at an older age, but it doesn’t have to be an insurmountable struggle either. Contact senior moving companies in your area to find out more about how they can help.

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  • Mark Edelen

    About :

    Welcome to the Retirement Living Blog. I direct and edit the blog for the best senior-housing and senior-living insight and advice, while also conducting search-engine optimization for the site as a whole. Follow me on Twitter @MarkEdelen.


    1. Donna Farley says:

      Mark, I love this blog you created. I am 60 now, and looking to go to a 55 community and downsizing in the near future. I will be following! Thanks!

    2. Great info Mark! It’s an overwhelming task for sure! It definitely doesn’t have to be a deterrent! This list by zip code and your article is very helpful!

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