Helping a senior move involves much more than it does, for example, a young family, relocating executive, 1st time home buyer or a move up buyer needing a larger home. Senior homeowners have a special set of circumstances and needs.
One of the areas I focus on is senior citizens. This is because of what I witnessed early in my career. It affected me tremendously and to this day I wince when I think about it.
A Horrible Experience
I had an offer on a house in Westwood, NJ. Back then offers were always presented to the seller and listing agent at the house. The listing agent was waiting for me on the front porch.
She told me to give her 20 minutes because she wanted to “soften up this old lady” to take an offer at XYZ dollars. This was so shocking to me that I was stunned. I didn’t know how to react for a moment.
Because my offer was higher, I called up my buyers and we lowered our offer. While I did the right job for my buyers, this has always bothered me.
Bad Apples Good Apples and Weichert Realtors
I know that real estate agents have a bad reputation. Agents like that one are the reason why. Real estate is like everything else. There are bad apples in that barrel along with good apples. The problem with real estate is that those bad apples can devastate you.
Here’s a shameless promotion of my company to explain why I’m a Weichert agent. Weichert Realtors emphasizes customer service like no other company I’ve found. This is because we are a family owned business. I bet that surprises you because Weichert is a successful multi billion dollar corporation. There isn’t any other family owned business around that’s this big and still family owned. As a result, we think differently. Customer service is our focus. We believe that success comes from taking care of people the right way.
The Needs of a Senior Move
Whenever a senior moves from their home, it’s more than a physical move. This is a watershed moment in their lives. They know that they are moving to either the last chapter of their life or on the way there.
That little old lady alone in her house sees her children playing in the living room, herself gardening in the yard, her husband coming home from work and sitting down at the kitchen table for a cup of coffee with her. That house represents her life and all the memories tied up in it.
Clearing out the house is traumatic. Every item from a coffee cup to an old chair is a memory. Adult children coming home to “help Mom throw things out” are often surprised to see what she’s saved. I’m one of those moms myself. I actually have the salad fork and spoon I made for my Grandmother in the 2nd grade. Imagine what my son will think when I’m that little old lady moving out. It’s so much more than a move.
Additionally my seniors need every piece of paper explained to them patiently and repeatedly. I create letters and schedules with step by step descriptions of what’s going to happen, when and why. I do my best to make it all understandable. Often I have to do the same with a family member.
The Right Professional
It’s impossible for me to do the best job for my senior clients without the right support. Organizing and throwing out all of that “stuff” with the patience and sensitivity required is not easy. You need a very special professional for this and I’ve found the ideal company. Organize With Lisa is a fabulous company that just did an amazing job for an East Hill Englewood seller.
This was a monumental project with 50 years of business files plus personal items saved. The degree of caring and patience in how this was handled was more than I could have hoped for. Lisa and her staff were amazing. The seller, at the end, was ecstatic with the job done. Even if you’re not a senior, Organize With Lisa is an outstanding choice.
Because seniors need more help, the choice of attorney is very important. Not only do you need a highly capable real estate attorney, you also need one who is compassionate. Jill Horton-Miller is one of the best real estate lawyers I know. Jill is, as are all successful attorneys, quite busy but she spent more time than usual with my senior seller. She not only explained everything but she also reassured her.
Helping A Senior Move
Helping a senior move does involve considerably more time and effort. However it is, for me, a labor of love. Seniors can be trying at times but they’re also a lot of fun. Filled with a lifetime of experience, we can learn a lot from them. With the right support from people like Lisa and Jill, we can make their move a positive, new chapter in their lives.