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When you think of moving, you undoubtedly recognize it as a big project. In this sense, you can think of move management services as project management. If you have ever moved, you also know that moving is a process, so move management services include process management. A move manager’s role is to streamline the moving process and provide guidance and support along the way. The goal is to reduce both the emotional and physical stress that can accompany a move.

So, what is senior move management?

Senior move management is simply move management services which cater to the more mature mover. Senior move managers are used to dealing with the complexities inherent in moves to retirement communities and 55+ apartment complexes. Among other things, they are also typically better trained at helping with the more emotional or sentimental aspects that can accompany moving from a longtime family residence or those that follow a death in the family. The more experienced move managers also have the training to work with those dealing with memory loss, dementia, or other physical or mental health challenges.

Furthermore, regardless of training, not all move management companies or move managers are the same – some are more task-oriented, operating more like movers, while others are relationship-oriented, organizing the move process around both the physical and emotional needs of the client.  Exceptional move managers are excellent at balancing both the client’s personal needs and goals with the physical tasks required for a successful and hassle-free move.


Listed below are some of the various services move management companies offer:
Initial consultation

Goal setting and establishing a timeline is the first step in the process. A move manager will talk with you about your overall expectations and what you would like to accomplish. You will show your move manager around your home so he or she can assess the space you have now and compare it with the space to which you will be moving. This is the perfect time to ask questions about the overall process.


Pre-move household preparations

Every move and every client is unique, but regardless of the home size or length of residency, there is always a sorting, organizing, thinning, and packing process that must take place in preparation for a move. A move manager can personally assist you in this process including:

    • Determining the “must-have” items, personal effects, and furnishings that you intend to move
    • Sorting through closets, cupboards, and other hiding places to determine what to keep, donate, sell, repurpose, or give away
    • Labeling, listing, and staging items to be packed and moved
    • Space planning for your new residence
    • Coordinating donation pickups and deliveries as needed

This process can take a few hours, several days, or even a couple of months to complete. No matter the size or complexity of your move, it culminates with a final pre-move meeting usually taking place one or two days prior to the move. Throughout the process, a move manager will be with you every step of the way — sometimes by phone, email or text, but mostly you will be working together in person.


Coordination of professional packing and moving services

A move manager will arrange for estimates from reputable vendors and assist you in securing these services. The move cost is typically not included in the move management fee, but a move manager will be able to pass along any discounts they may have negotiated with certain vendors.

Move day oversight and unpacking

Your move manager will meet the movers and oversee the loading and unloading process. Upon arrival at your new residence, essential items will be unpacked and put away according to your instructions. Bed(s) will be made, bathrooms will be equipped, and your coffee or teapot readily available for use. Furniture will be positioned according to your preferences and empty boxes will be removed and discarded.



Following your move, the move manager will assist you with becoming settled into your new residence. This may mean emptying remaining boxes and putting items away, hanging pictures, arranging for utilities, and assisting with organizing various services offered at your new community. The resettling process may take one day or it could take two or more depending on the size of your new residence.

Liquidation of extra personal items

When downsizing, you will not likely be moving everything from your current home to your new place. A move manager will explain the sale and donation options and help you determine which option best suits your goals. A move manager can also meet with vendors and assist with liquidation oversight.


Professional referrals

A move manager can connect you with other service providers such as Realtors, house cleaners, handymen, contractors, decorators, organizers, etc.


Some move managers charge by the hour and others may offer project rates. This will depend on the overall goals of the client and may depend on whether the move is local or out of area. Hourly rates in the Oklahoma City area usually range from $40-$75 per hour and may depend on how many people are needed to complete the move process. Project fees associated with a local move might range from $1000 to $3500 (plus the mover’s fee). Some or all of the fees may be reimbursed by the senior living community where you are moving.

Nikki Buckelew

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