Housing: Making your move

To move or not to move?

Moving house can bring positive benefits, such as lowered home maintenance concerns, surroundings that make daily activities easier, and bringing friends, family and other support closer to hand.

However moving can be stressful. Moving away from a family home or familiar neighbourhood can be especially challenging when it means moving away from a life history of experiences and long established networks and support systems.

The move may be traumatic where it is due to changing health or financial circumstances, or when it follows the death of a spouse or life companion.

Things to consider when planning a move:

Your level of health or disability in relation to access, stairs, maintenance, repairs, household facilities and amenities, etc
Access to services and recreation
Level of support from family, carers
Size and space for family members to visit, or caregivers to stay
Cultural differences and requirements
Economic issues, including rent, mortgage, repairs, rates, maintenance.

Moving in with family

Multi-generational households can be a good option; living with family members can provide support and companionship for both old and young. However, unclear or informal arrangements can lead to family dissent and even elder abuse.

Checklist before moving in:

Talk frankly about the issues and assumptions involved. Does everyone share common expectations about finances, personal spaces,     personal possessions, food, cooking, caregiving, transport, noise and friends?
If you are looking at merging your financial interests, for example by selling your house, get independent legal advice and record     expectations and agreements in writing.
Consider if your move is reversible, should the situation change. 

Resources

Accredited Visiting Service
Accredited volunteer visitors are available for people who want more company.
 
Maintaining your home
Some local Age Concerns provide advice and contacts for additional services such as home maintenance, lawn-mowing and gardening, or contacts for reliable and accredited tradespeople, you can also read more about home repairs and maintenance here. 

Find your nearest Age Concern