I was recently speaking with a friend of mine who is tasked with assisting her parents with a downsizing move from the family home. Her parents, who are now in their 80’s, live on an acreage about 90 miles from her. Because her mother’s dementia has begun to progress, her father is uncertain about his ability to care for her for the longterm and is looking for senior living options that will allow the them to live together while getting the additional care his wife will need.
This is a familiar conversation that I have had dozens of times with families just like my friend. Sometimes it involves siblings who are pooling their collective resources and knowledge, while other times it is an only child who lives miles away and is dividing time between eldercare and childcare. Regardless of the family makeup, this task is never an easy one.
Not only are adult children managing the logistics of travel, work, and family dynamics, they are also struggling with all to familiar questions like:
Am I doing the right thing?
How much do I push?
Are my parents able to make good decisions?
How do I guide without taking control?
Where is the best place for them to live?
There are many variations to all of these questions, but the deeper question that ultimately lies beneath all of them is, “Will I have regrets later?”
With few exceptions, we all want what is best for our parents in their last years and the last thing we want is to make a decision or do something that we will regret and not have the opportunity to make right.
Certified Senior Housing Professionals understand these questions and the consequences that go along with being the support system for aging parents. They take the time to not only help senior adult with making empowered choices, but they also appreciate and address the concerns of caregivers who are intricately involved in the process as well.
While many real estate agents are skilled contract negotiators, CSHPs are also masterful at negotiating the many emotions involved in a late in life move. They see their role not only as an agent, but also as an advocate.
Over the years, we have received dozens of client letters following the completion of a sale and late in life transition and I would like to share one of my favorites.
The one below comes from the son of a couple in their 80’s who were in the process of moving into a senior living community when the husband passed away. Both their children lived out of state and traveled back and forth multiple times to handle the arrangements and assist their mom with the subsequent move. It is a great reminder to me just how important our role as a CSHP is from the very beginning.
I suspect you are a treasure! I loved your joke...it brought a well-needed laugh, which is exactly the way our family deals with stress and adversity.
I want to thank you for the incredibly caring way you do business. You and your staff allowed my sister and me to go back to our homes secure in the knowledge that Mom was in the best hands...and with people who were looking out for her best interest, comfort and security.
You should be proud of the service you perform. We certainly are!
Thank you again, in advance, for easing Mom's transition.
If you are an skilled real estate professional who has a passion for seniors and want to make a positive difference in the lives of seniors and their families, we invite you to join the Seniors Real Estate Institute community and become a Certified Senior Housing Professional today.
|Nikki Buckelew is the Founder and CEO of the Seniors Real Estate Institute and administrator for the Certified Senior Housing Professional® (CSHP) designation. A veteran REALTOR® of over two decades, she holds a bachelor’s degree in gerontology and a master’s degree in counseling psychology. As a professional speaker, coach, and trainer, Nikki is committed to empowering, equipping, and educating real estate sales and senior housing professionals seeking to better serve the mature market segment.