Tips for moving elderly parents closer to adult children.

Tips for Moving Parents Closer to Adult Children

Senior Living
CPond tips for moving seniors hero

Posted: February 22, 2024

If you have elderly parents but do not live in the same town they do, you might be wondering about the necessity and logistics of seniors moving closer to family. Perhaps you moved away from your hometown after college. Or maybe your parents relocated to a warmer client when they retired. But as they age, they might need to move closer to family.

Cpond moving seniorsWhen older loved ones begin to struggle with the responsibilities of day-to-day living, it can be a challenge to determine what might be best for everyone. Ultimately, the decision to move closer to family is a personal one, and seniors should consider their own priorities, preferences, and goals for this stage of their life.

Plan Ahead Before Speaking With Your Senior Parents

Moving closer to family may require long-term planning, including legal and financial considerations such as estate planning, healthcare directives, and power of attorney arrangements.

Before you sit down to speak with your parents, make sure you have done your homework. Even if parents don’t live hundreds of miles away, if a relative cannot easily see them at least once a week to ensure their safety, it might as well be a million miles away. This is especially true if your family member is living with dementia.

Be sure to investigate the following areas when considering seniors moving closer to family:

  • Make a list of your concerns about why you don’t believe their current environment is safe and healthy.
  • Educate yourself on living arrangements. Investigate care options near you, depending on the needed care level. If moving your parents in with you is a possibility, this may also be worth exploring.
  • Learn about how important healthy living is for seniors so you can discuss this with your loved ones. A positive environment around friends and family can add years to a senior’s longevity.
  • Emphasize to your parents how important it is for them to be close by so you can monitor their health. Being around familiar people, such as family, is also vital as they age.

This is a challenging conversation. It’s essential to respect and honor your parents and invite their collaboration. Having these conversations over a period of time will give them a sense of control and peace of mind about their future.

The Right Time for Moving Seniors Closer to Family

respite care seniorDeciding when to move senior parents closer to family is a significant decision that involves careful consideration of various factors. The conversation itself is not only tough, but so is knowing when to have it.

The first thing to do is assess your parents’ current health status and any ongoing medical needs. If they require frequent medical attention or assistance with daily activities, being closer to family who can provide support may be beneficial. The concept of ADLs (activities of daily living) developed by Dr. Sidney Katz are indicators that show a human’s ability to live independently. They include the following:


  • Bathing
  • Eating
  • Getting dressed
  • Going to the bathroom
  • Controlling when you go to the bathroom
  • Getting out of bed

Scoring is either zero points if the activity can’t be performed or one point if it can. The higher the score, the more likely the person can live independently.

Other key points to consider include the following:

  • Consider the level of social support your parents have in their current location. Moving closer to family can provide them with emotional support and companionship, which is crucial for their well-being.
  • Evaluate the quality of life your parents have in their current location compared to what they could have closer to family. Factors such as access to healthcare, recreational activities, and community engagement should be taken into account.
  • Assess the safety and security of your parents’ current living situation. Moving closer to family may provide them with a greater sense of security, especially if they are living alone.
  • Consider the practicalities of the move, such as finding suitable housing, coordinating transportation, and arranging for the transfer of medical records and other essential documents.

Ultimately, involve your parents in decision-making and consider their wishes and preferences. While moving closer to family may seem logical, it’s essential to respect your parents’ autonomy and consider what will make them happiest.

Considering Level of Care and Financial Situation

Moving can be expensive, so it’s essential to consider the financial implications of relocating your parents closer to family. Evaluate the cost of living in both locations and determine if the benefits of moving outweigh the expenses. 

You must also determine the level of care that is needed. Costs vary by the level of care, such as Assisted Living, Memory Support, and Independent Living. Inclusions and amenities will also impact costs. Typically, there is a base rate, which includes some meals, activities, programming, and utilities. There may be charges for additional support services, such as additional nursing care.

residents on computer

Talk with a geriatric care manager or social worker as you consider your options and what you can and cannot do for your parents. For example, you’ll need to consider whether they are taking their medications properly and whether they are eating properly. Has their mobility decreased? Is their overall health worsening? Are they becoming lonely or reclusive? All of these will help you in determining the level of care they’ll need.


Other items to think about include the following:

  • Consider which activities of daily living your parents can do independently, such as eating, bathing, and using the bathroom.
  • Evaluate the level of care your parents will need in terms of constant supervision or assistance.
  • Examine your physical health and desire and ability to provide care for your parents in your own home.
  • Explore services that are available in your community, such as adult day services and meal delivery.

Investigate senior living communities that can provide the level of care your parents need, visiting in person or virtually, as needed. Be sure to include them as part of the decision-making process.

Making the Move

Since many seniors will move from a home to a smaller place, downsizing is crucial. At Casey’s Pond, we have a wide array of floor plans to choose from. Talk to your parents as early as possible about developing a plan for downsizing and be sure to treat them like adults. Treat their possessions with respect. Even items that don’t have a lot of monetary value may be difficult for them to let go of because of emotional ties. Many families use the services of senior move managers.

Cpond tips moving seniors 2Once the move is planned, set up a packing schedule but be prepared to move slowly. Putting pressure on your parents to let go of items will likely be counterproductive. Get as much of the family involved as possible and find a home for items with sentimental value whenever possible.

For seniors moving new to spaces, recreating the feel of the home they left behind can ease the transition. Help them decorate with cherished items. Consider digitizing photos on an electronic device that doesn’t take up much space but keeps these heirlooms accessible. If possible, spend time with them in their new place.

Read more about the lifestyle at Casey’s Pond, and what residents have to say about their experiences in our welcoming, inclusive continuing care community. We’re here to answer your questions! Contact us to learn more or to schedule a tour.

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Casey's Pond Senior Living Community is managed by Cappella Living Solutions and is a non-profit organization. We offer Independent Living, Assisted Living, as well as Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation. Casey's Pond Senior Living Community is located in Steamboat Springs, Colorado and services the areas in and around Milner, Hayden, Walden, Craig, Pagoda, Oak Creek, Phippsburg, Bear Mountain, Coalmont, and Elk Mountain. We also are an ideal senior community for those in the zip codes 80487, 80477, 80488, 80480, 81639, 80428, 80469, 80467, 80459, 80480, and 80434.

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