What to bring when moving to a retirement community?

Updated on December 8, 2020

Moving into a retirement community can be a massive decision of your life, regardless of the type of care it provides. You can find the initial moving process a bit tiring and stressful due to your age. You would have to think about downsizing your belongings, selling off your house, and many other things you did not do earlier. And since all these are tough choices, you can struggle a bit. Still, you don’t have to burden yourself with what to do and how to proceed. Downsizing has become a popular practice ever since seniors have started simplifying their living conditions to enjoy a retired life ahead.

You would be leaving your longtime home to live in a smaller and easy to manage space in one of the best retirement communities. So you would have to sort all the things you accumulated over the years to carry with yourself to your new place of living. Here are a few tips to help you get started with this.

Things to carry with you to your new retirement living place


You would need to pack clothing items, for sure. So you can begin with your wardrobe. Choose your jewelry and clothes that you can pack and store in your new home. These include sweaters, pajamas, yoga dress, casual clothes, robes, bathing suits, formal attire for social gatherings at community, shoes, slippers, etc. Other unnecessary items you can donate to a charity or give away.

Favorite belongings and keepsake

Some memories are for a lifetime. You may have a few items like collectibles, photo albums, scrapbooks, books, movies, and others that remind you of the special moments of your life. They can make you feel like you are at your home. Since these don’t need much room, you can bring them quickly. Some retirement communities tend to be pet-friendly. That means you can have your dog or cat there. Nevertheless, please learn about their pet policies beforehand.

Pieces of furniture

Senior living spaces may not come fully furnished. So you can see it as an opportunity to add your personal touch to it to create a home-like ambiance. If you know your new living place’s size and format, you can consider bringing your small sofa/ armchair, end tables, coffee table, dresser, and nightstand. A small kitchen table and bed can also feature in the list.

Home décor

You can be a little sad and anxious as you leave your cocoon of comfort. It can be painful to move away from a place where you weaved thousands of memories. However, it would be best to look at this transition as the beginning of a more relaxed and carefree time of your life. Still, you don’t have to miss your home. You can give your new home a touch of the last house by incorporating a few favorite household and décor items. They should be an extension of your personality and make you feel comfortable. When you talk about this, consider the choice of throw pillows, lamps, potted plants, flower vases, blankets, artwork, photo frames, and so on.

Once done with this, you would gain more clarity about what to do next. You can quickly pack or leave other things that don’t make much sense. However, just one thing is there – while you may have checked the location, amenities, and levels of care of the retirement community, did you also confirm if it matches your faith? Finding a faith-based community can make your living place even more suitable and inviting for your needs. For example, if you are a catholic, you can move to any catholic retirement communities.

One of the immediate benefits of this can be finding solace amidst the time of transition and uncertainty. You can be nervous and skeptical about your new life in the retirement facility. But you can turn to your faith to overcome fears and apprehension. Another thing is the sense of connection and familiarity. Most seniors hesitate to move to a retirement community because they don’t want to leave their familiar surroundings. However, faith-based retirement houses allow them to fill this gap when they meet others from the same background and traditions. It gives them an instant opportunity to mingle and feel a part of the vibrant environment where everyone is ready to connect and share.

In essence, make sure the retirement community meets all your personal and personality needs. Once you find out the right place, it would not seem like a hassle to step into the new retired life that is more sorted, easy-going, and smooth. And as for what you should carry, you already have a fair idea of specific things you can pack and move with yourself. Also, if you have a pet, know the policies around it to avoid any last-minute inconvenience. It would be so great to have your little friend around, even in a new place.

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