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10 Proactive Tips for Seniors Planning to Sell Their Home

10 Proactive Tips for Seniors Planning to Sell Their Home
Jason Neufeld
July 1, 2019

While our firm specializes in Elder Law and Medicaid Planning, we try to add content that impacts the Florida senior community even if it doesn't directly relate to a specific legal matter that we handle.

For seniors, selling a home they spent many years living in can be more of an emotional experience, as opposed to fun and exciting. This may especially be the case if they are moving into an assisted living facility or moving in with family members for extra care. If you have a senior family member that is getting ready to sell their home, take extra care with them and also keep these tips in mind when helping them get their home ready to sell.

Explore Different Financing Options

Whether you are moving in with a family member, downsizing to a smaller residence, or moving into a senior living facility, make sure you are financially ready to make that move. If you are relying on the money you will be making on your home, keep in mind that you may not receive that money as soon as you are expecting and need to plan accordingly.

This may also be the right time to explore Medicaid planning to help pay for long-term care costs.

Upgrade Dated Furniture

You may notice that some furniture is a little dated or worn. When it is time to sell your or your loved one’s home, you want to make sure that the home is putting its best foot forward with clean and welcoming furniture. You may want to invest in purchasing new furniture for the home, or consider getting rid of, or storing, older furniture and hiring a company to stage the home.

Clean Out and Move Storage

Now is the perfect time to go through old storage to get rid of any clutter and then put the rest of your goods in a storage facility.

Ideally, you will have plenty of time to go through your items and get rid of everything you don’t want and then store your keepsakes in a safe place. If you are pressed for time, however, try and find a quality air-conditioned storage facility to hold your items until you have time to go through them.

Start Packing What You Can Early

Packing up your home will prove to be a trying task. Get a head start while you can and pack items you don’t need early. Do a few boxes a day, so then when you really need to start packing the bigger items, you have already taken care of a good portion of the work.

There are services that can assist with packing and moving as well.

Jump Start Home Maintenance

If you’ve been living in the same home for years, there are probably several things that need to be taken care of. Get a head start while you can, and especially focus on items that will pop up in your home inspection. Consider investing in a repair service plan a year or two before you plan on downsizing so that you can get repairs taken care of in an affordable way. This can also increase the eventual sales price!

Manicure the Landscaping

Speaking of increasing the home sale price - curb appeal is so important when it comes to real estate, so make sure you invest some time in making sure your landscaping is in great shape. Whether you simply mow the lawn and make sure all the shrubbery is nice and trimmed, or you hire a company to add in some nice foliage, make sure that the first thing potential home-buyers see is a nice clean landscape.

Highlight Unique Features

If you have an older home that has some beautiful unique features to it, make sure those are highlighted as much as possible. This can include original flooring and windows, or even special wainscoting that adds character. If you think that your home may be sold to another senior couple, consider highlighting age-in-place features like curbless showers or a laundry unit that is on the ground floor.

Find a Trustworthy Real Estate Agent

Having a great real estate agent will make a world of difference when it comes to selling your home. They will be well-versed in the current market and know the trends to focus on when prepping your home for a sale.

Create a Realistic Timeline

If you are planning on selling your home, make sure you create a realistic timeline that fits well with everything that needs to be done. This includes prepping your home for the sale, finding a residence for yourself, and giving your real estate agent enough time to sell your home by the time you need it to be sold.

Plan as Far Ahead as Possible

The further out you plan to sell your home,the better. This will give you plenty of time to make any updates you need to make, as well as find a new residence and give your real estate agent plenty of time to find the right buyer for your home.

This post was written by a guest author: Amanda Turner.

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Jason Neufeld

Jason Neufeld is the Founder and Managing Partner of Elder Needs Law, a Florida estate planning and elder law firm he created in 2017. With more than 15 years of experience practicing law, he represents clients in a wide range of legal matters, including Medicaid planning, estate planning, elder law, probate, Medicare, and life insurance.

Jason received his Juris Doctor from the University of Miami — School of Law and is a member of the Florida Bar and the Broward County Bar Association. He has received numerous accolades for his work, including being named a Rising Star and Super Lawyer by Super Lawyers and among the Florida Legal Elite by Florida Trend in 2024.

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