Moving Checklist

8 Steps for Moving Into a New Senior Living Community

There is plenty of advice out there about choosing the right senior community. But once you’ve made your choice, how do you go about settling in? We’ve prepared a post-move-in checklist to help you get acquainted with your new home.

  • Update your contact information

Make sure everyone who matters can still find you – share your new address with families, friends, and medical contacts. Your community may even have pre-made change-of-address post cards you can send. Complete a change-of-address form with the US Postal Service. Gather contact numbers for key staff who can help others find you in case of an emergency.

  • Get to know the staff

Learn the names of the staff and determine if you share any hobbies or interests. They will become like new neighbors you’ll see every day.

  • Make some friends

Two Senior Women Having Teas

Experiment with sitting at different tables during meal time to find some new friends in your fellow residents. Your community may have a buddy system in place to encourage new friendships.

  • Attend an event

Get a copy of the social calendar and attend an event that sounds interesting. Join any and all clubs that spark your interest at all – you’ll get to meet lots of people quickly and can slowly drop out of the groups you’re not so excited about over the next few months. The key is to get involved in as many arenas as possible and you will discover all kinds of new folks and interests.

  • Introduce your family

Invite your family to come for events or join you for a meal if possible. Introduce them to staff and residents. Ask if your community will host a private luncheon to celebrate your new home, or if they may host a party for all the new residents that month – be sure to invite your closest friends, too!

  • Take it easy

Everyone adjusts to a new environment differently. Be patient and give yourself time to adjust. Contact the staff if you need something – this is not the time to be shy about asking for assistance.

  • Familiarize yourself with your new surroundings

Determine where the nearest pharmacy, grocery store, and bank are located. Get a copy of the transportation schedule. Discover new ways to get to know the broader community – find the senior center, local parks, and theaters and see what events they offer. Learn the community procedures for meal time, laundry, maintenance requests, quiet hours, smoking areas, billing, and using the call button.

  • Spread the word!

Write a review on SeniorAdvisor.com – take a few minutes to share your experience and guidance for others who are now going through the same search you did. If you love your new community, tell others what makes it so special!

We hope you find these tips helpful. Do you have any other best practices for moving into a retirement community in Atlanta, Denver, or anywhere else? Let us know in the comments!

Based in Austin, TX, Amelia is the Content Marketing Manager for SeniorAdvisor.com. When she’s not writing about online reputation management, online reviews, and social media in the senior living space, she enjoys yoga and running with her dog Rockefeller. She graduated from Wellesley College cum laude with a dual degree in English and Medieval/Renaissance Studies.

2 Comments

  1. Warren & Barbara Drye March 9, 2014 Reply

    Dec.31st 2012 ,we sold empty rental property just 1&1/2 miles from our small farm to an “Assisted Living Co,” Their facilities are scheduled for completion sometime in March 2014. My ist wife of 64 yrs. 24th of March is in Rehab Center now that is quarenteened with a Virous. Barbara has; Parkinson’s, legally blind (wet MD), rt knee replaced,, heart attack with stent, cancer five times, turned 81 2-12-14 (looks 55-60 and as beautiful as ever). Had to call 911 about a month ago1:AM and put in hosp. with intestinal blockage, Fortunately cleared up three days later with no operation. Due to Parkinson’s, the Rehab is necessary to reteach walking, etc. I am 84 and extreme back problems(other problems but manageable) with treatment, Plans are: to try to manage when she gets out and first, see what new Center has to offer since so close to home now and keep this place as I have many hobbies and animals I don’t want to get rid of. We are open to suggestions!!!!

    • Author
      Amelia Willson March 10, 2014 Reply

      Hi Warren, thank you for sharing your story. If you are interested in a free, personalized senior care recommendation for you and your wife, please call (866) 333-7320 to talk to a local advisor who will work with you to find options based on your specific needs and budget.

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