Your parents’ home is cluttered and becoming a mess. You’re worried about them tripping over the piles of books stacked in the hallway. You don’t like that they keep their shoes tucked on the side of their stairs.
You want to help them declutter, but they’ve talked about the house being too much for them. How do you know if it’s best for them to downsize now or declutter and get them help?
Talk to Them
Talk to your parents about their wishes. They may prefer staying in their home and having help. They may be ready to move to something smaller that doesn’t have stairs. You need to let them guide the conversation and feel free to state their preference.
Older adults often like being in their home as the neighborhood and town are familiar. They don’t have to meet new people, find the best stores and restaurants, or find new doctors. There are no guarantees that you could find a single-story home in their price range without them moving to a new town.
They should go over the pros and cons of moving vs. not moving. They may find their neighborhood is too young for them now. It could be that neighbors are too noisy or they feel too isolated. If that’s the case, a move to an area where more older adults are located might be ideal. They may not like the idea of moving, and that’s fine. Companionship services can make sure they don’t feel isolated or lonely.
Look at Where They Have Struggles
See where your parents need help. If they no longer drive, they may be fine by themselves and just need someone to take them to appointments and stores. If they can’t cook meals, meal preparation services and menu planning may be better.
Housekeeping and laundry are other services that help your parents stay in their home without giving up their independence. If they need help with more personal tasks like oral care, bathing, and toileting, those are other services that may help out.
Discuss the Benefits of Home Care
Once they’ve decided if they want to move or stay put, talk to them about arranging home care services. They can have caregivers come by when they need to do the housework, cook meals, take them shopping, or provide companionship. It’s an easy way for them to stay in their home and avoid a costly, time-consuming move.