As baby boomers age and enter a new stage of life, many are choosing to move to warmer climates or smaller homes. Iris Bartkowski, 62, is one such boomer, and has recently packed up her possessions in the home she has lived in for 53 years, according The Times Union.
Bartkowski had lived in the home since she was nine, with her mother, grandmother and two uncles. Now, however, she decided that it was time to move on.
Her mother, 83-year-old Rose Fagle, is also choosing to move from the residence. The women will be moving to different destinations, but have plans to regularly keep in touch.
"It was hard to leave," Fagle told the news provider. "But we thought about it. We each went our own way."
Many boomers appear to be doing the same thing as empty-nesters look for smaller residences or the economy forces others to sell their homes. The U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey estimated that around 232,000 boomers had moved from properties in the region around Albany, New York, in 2009.
One of the most difficult parts of the move is clearing out personal possessions. "It looked like a consignment shop. I had five rooms of stuff," Bartkowski told the news source.
She hired Helen Volk, of Beyond Clutter, to help her with the process. Volk has aided hundreds of families as they transition from one home to the next. She helped Fable and Bartkowski organize and plan for the packing and also helped host a garage sale that sold around $3,000 worth of belongings.
Volk suggests that those who are making decisions between what to keep and what to give away can be difficult, which is why it's important to separate the memories from the actual items. Bartkowksi was attached to a red wagon, but ended up taking a picture of the cherished item instead of keeping it.
In the end, when all of her belongings were cleared out and her mother had already moved, Bartkowski claimed that the move became easier because it was no longer her house and the memories were already packed up.
Those who are making the difficult transition from one residence to the next may also want to ensure that the new home is safe. Seniors may be unfamiliar with the layout of the building and investing in a medical alert system can help ensure that an older adult can immediately send a personal emergency response message if they require assistance.