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You have made the decision to move into an assisted living residence, yet you still have many questions. Do I really need the help? Will I make new friends? Will I receive help when I need it? Will I continue to see my family and friends? While all these questions are common, the answer to all of them is the same: Yes! You can make new friends, you can receive the personal assistance you need, and you can continue to see your family and friends. Change can be challenging. The time it takes to transition is different for everyone. The keys to success are preparation, a positive attitude, a supportive network of family and friends and patience and understanding—all will prepare you for a smooth transition.

What To Bring To Your New Home

Soon after selecting a retirement community, residents say to begin planning for your move, including deciding which personal items such as furniture, keepsakes and photographs to take with you.

Based upon their personal experiences, many residents suggest you see the actual apartment or suite that you will move into and take measurements. Ask the administrator or director what furniture, if any, the residence will provide. Some residences may provide minimal furniture, such as a bed or a chair upon request; other residences encourage you to bring whatever furnishings will make you feel comfortable in your new home. Experience indicates that making choices about personal possessions is difficult during the transition period; however, one resident said, “It’s not as hard as you think . . . Remain positive and have family and friends help you.”

Residents suggest that you might want to leave large pieces of furniture at home since your apartment will probably be smaller than your current home. They also suggest that you bring smaller prized possessions to create that “at-home” feeling in your new assisted living apartment. And, for those possessions that you can’t part with but aren’t sure you should bring with you, consider putting those items in a storage unit or asking family to temporarily store the items for you. This way you will have time to determine which items are important to have with you at your new home.

Moving Day Helpers

You should start packing well in advance of the actual move. Sort through your clothes and decide what you will need and how much your new closets will hold. Residents advise you to look at available closet and storage space to avoid bringing more than the closets can hold. Avoid bringing too many of one thing such as coats.

When moving day arrives and you are ready to set up your new home, ask family and friends to help arrange and organize your apartment. You will want to find out what assistance the community offers before you arrive on moving day. Although staff, family members, and friends are there to help you, it is important that you decide how your apartment is arranged. Remember that arranging your apartment to suit your preferences will make your adjustment easier.

Additional Tips For New Residents:

  • Read all the materials about the your new community before you move in.
  • Try and meet the administrator or director and staff before moving day.
  • Review and complete paperwork and sign your resident contract before your moving day so that your questions can be answered in advance, and you can concentrate on arranging your suite and meeting new friends the day you move.
  • Pack wisely. Don’t bring everything.
  • Label your clothing to avoid confusion with laundry.
  • Read the activity schedule and choose two or three programs to attend early on to meet your neighbors and other residents.

Everyone copes differently with change based on his or her own personality, life experiences and circumstances. Patience, support and understanding are key themes that residents say helped them, their families and friends with transitioning into assisted living. Rest assured that the Pickersgill staff is experienced, ready and willing to assist you with your move. Don’t be shy about asking questions or seeking assistance. It is our goal that your move is a positive experience for you.

For additional information on Assisted Living at Pickersgill Retirement Community please call Janice Harris at 410-842-0408.