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Should I Sell My Parents’ Home Before or After They Move to Senior Living?

Should I Sell My Parents’ Home Before or After They Move to Senior Living?

December 19, 2023

Being both a real estate professional and a senior resource specialist at LivWell Seniors, I often interact with families from diverse backgrounds, each facing unique circumstances. A common concern I encounter is the emotional challenge families face when contemplating selling a home filled with a lifetime of memories. For most seniors, leaving a home they’ve lived in for over 25 years is a heart-wrenching decision. So, how should one navigate this?

Understanding the Emotional Undertone

First and foremost, approach this transition with compassion. Understand that this shift is deeply emotional. Seniors might fear the unknown or the act of letting go. If selling their home isn’t necessary for funding their care, I usually advise moving them to the senior community first. This makes the transition smoother. Once it’s clear they won’t return home, you can proceed with the sale. This phased approach allows for a more organized move, prioritizing essentials and treasured belongings. Once the home is vacant, sorting items for donation, sale, or disposal becomes simpler. But always remember to handle their possessions with care and discretion; they might not want to hear about items being discarded.

Moreover, selling the house after they’ve settled in a senior living community is typically less stressful. This way, you can prepare the home for sale without constantly shifting your parents for property showings.

When Immediate Sale Is Necessary

If the home needs to be sold to support their care, it’s best to list it promptly. This ensures you understand the funds you have at your disposal when selecting a senior living community. Begin decluttering and preparing the house for sale early. And again, always approach conversations and actions around the sale sensitively when your parents are present.

Steps Before Listing

Reach out to LivWell Seniors. As a complimentary referral service, they can guide you in finding the best senior living community. They can also assist in procuring a professional moving company and realtor.

Plan Ahead. Set a target listing date and allot specific days for decluttering and any necessary home improvements.

Engage a Reliable Realtor. A trusted real estate professional can make the selling process smoother, allowing you to focus on your parents’ transition.

Local professionals are an asset. While they manage the technicalities, your primary role should be to support and comfort your parents through this significant change.

Cammie is a licensed Realtor in both Iowa and Illinois.

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