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A Closer Look at the Move-In Process

A Closer Look at the Move-In Process

Aging & Caregiving

steps for moving inIf and when it comes time to make a move to a senior living community, knowing what to expect can make the process a bit easier. So before you pack the boxes and put the house on the market, read through our 10 steps to moving in and share them with your loved one and other family members.

Not ready to make the move just yet? These 10 steps may answer a few questions you have about the transition….check them out for future reference!

10 Steps to Moving In:

1. Deposit & Application – The first step! The deposit reserves an apartment or a spot on our waiting list. At this point, the deposit is 100% refundable if your loved one changes his/her mind. The application tells us a little bit about your loved one; it also includes some financial tools to evaluate resources.

2. Physician’s Form –The physician’s form is completed by your loved one’s primary care physician who signs off that his/her needs can be met in an assisted living community. Once it is sent back to us, our Wellness Team will schedule the Nursing Assessment.

3. Assessment – The assessment is typically the last step before walking through the doors to become a resident and is done here at the community. It can also be done on location, such as a rehab facility, if needed. Assessment includes: brief cognitive evaluation, strength/balance/mobility checks, and general health and wellness questions.

4. Lease Signing – The lease document seals the deal and opens the door to your loved one’s new home. Apartment rental, security deposit, and any community fees are typically due at the lease signing. A witness is required for some documents. Signing is usually done at the community with a family member and a staff member.

5. Financial Move-In/ Physical Move-In – Financial Move-In signifies the date your loved one can take possession of the apartment and begin moving in (bringing in furniture, etc.). Physical Move-In is the day your loved one actually moves in and becomes a resident (having meals, sleeping at the community, etc.). This can be the same day or different days.

6. Moving Day – The day your loved one is welcomed into the community! Many families help their loved one move things in together and other families choose to use a moving service. (We can recommend a mover.) Some move a little in at a time and others move everything in all at once. Staff is available to check in and help out when needed. (In general, we’ve found that a physical move-in between Mon. - Thurs. works best for managing the transition.)

7. Welcome and Introductions – Staff and residents are ready and available to welcome your loved one and introduce them to new friends and neighbors. New residents are encouraged to join in with daily events and activities, choosing to be as busy or as private as they’d like. Resident ambassadors are often assigned to new residents to walk them through the daily routine and support them through the transition.

8. Resident Orientation – Staff from every department (activities, dining services, housekeeping, etc.) will meet with your loved one at some point to discuss his/her preferences and the details of their role in the community. Orientation is usually informal and spread out across several days to avoid overwhelming your loved one. A “meet and greet” event of some kind also helps to welcome and direct new residents.

9. Family Follow-up – Staff will connect with family members shortly after move-in to inquire about the experience and check in to see how everyone is managing the transition. Family members are encouraged to share feedback with staff at any time. Staff members from every department of the community are committed to your loved one’s successful transition and will work to put together collaborative solutions to any issues that may arise.

10. Community Correspondence – Your loved one is now officially a resident and your family has become part of our family! You will begin to receive regular communication about our activities, events, menus, and other community highlights, and are encouraged to join us for anything and everything! Family members are invited to offer feedback to other families through support groups and other caregiving events. Rely on us as your resource for all things related to aging and caregiving.


About Marissa Salvesen

My journey into the world of senior living began when I started working for United Methodist Homes in 2010. Starting as an Activities Director at one of our-winning assisted and independent living communities and then transitioning to Marketing and Promotions Manager for UMH, I now work as the Manager of Mission Development, fostering the Mission and Values of our organization. I love sharing stories about the many ways we build meaningful relationships and enrich the lives of those we serve, and am proud to be part of building UMH’s 140-year legacy of caring. Wondering what makes our communities such special places to live and work? Connect with me and find out!

Our Blog is a 2016 Platinum Generations Award Winner! The Generations Award is an annual international competition for excellence in senior marketing recognizing professionals who have communicated to the 50+ Mature Markets.