If your parents have reached a time in life where they need a little extra care, having them move in with you an be a cost-effective option with many other benefits. There are also potential downsides. If you’ve weighed up the pros and cons of having a parent move in with you, and have made the decision to go this route, these tips will help you make the move as smooth as possible for both you and your parents.
Many people make the mistake of interpreting the fact that their parents need care as evidence that they are not capable of making decisions for themselves, or of understanding the consequences of the choices they make. If you believe this move is necessary, take the time to talk with your parents and fully explain your reasoning. There may be some pushback, so be prepared to outline exactly what you imagine the new living situation will be like. Managing your parents’ expectations is a good way to prepare them for life in a new space with different routines. Give them a chance to voice their anxieties, and try not to present everything as a foregone conclusion. Even if the tables have turned and now your parents are living under your roof, the key to living well together is a sense of shared ownership over the decision.
Call in the Pros
Getting your parents out of the family home and settled in with you is going to require a lot of your time and attention. When you start playing musical homes, it’s sensible to delegate the larger and more responsible jobs to professionals, leaving you time to arrange the finer touches that will mean the world to your parents. If you’re thinking of expanding your living space to accommodate your parents, calling in granny flat builders will save you lots of time and effort. And when it comes to selling your parents’ house, hiring a real estate agent you can trust will give your parents tremendous peace of mind if they’ve been out of the property bubble for many years and are overwhelmed by the prospect of selling.
You may also want to consider the benefits of senior home health care. These services are especially effective if your elderly parents have specific needs that you are not qualified to provide or know you will be too busy to give them your full attention. In-home carers can come and go whenever they are needed and can provide the top-quality care required to keep your elderly parents happy and healthy while also providing support for you and company for your parents if you are out of the house all day.
Even if for the young and optimistic, moving house can be a traumatic and overwhelming experience. Multiply this stress by a hundred to understand what moving is like for older people, who have grown attached to their space and comforts, not to mention the memories they have made over the years in the family home. The move is almost guaranteed to spark painful emotions and trigger defensive or hopeless responses. You’ll might need to deal with some unpleasant behaviour.
The best you can do in the face of this is respond with patience and kindness, reassuring them whenever possible about the positive choice they are making.
Whether it’s a prospect you relish, or it’s a last resort, having your parents move in with you can be a challenging time for everyone involved. Emotions will run high as your parents relinquish their independence, and you may have to renegotiate the habits and patterns of daily life. These tips will help you ease the process as much as possible.