by Jim Henderson
President of William C. Huff Companies and
national speaker for estate downsizing and lifestyle transitions
From the early 90’s through the early 2000’s, baby boomers and their growing families made up a majority of the ‘up-sizing’ movement within our country. Upwardly mobile boomers moved on average every six years as their careers led them to new locations and opportunities. Now a decade later as the generation of post-WWII babies enter retirement age, we can’t help but notice the new trend in moving is to ‘downsize’!
Often moves are from one large central home to two smaller homes, one in the Southern US and the other closer to family in the Northeast or Midwest. In theory, we’d like to think that these moves would be smaller, simpler and more positive due to the size of the move versus the ones we were making years ago.
But regardless of size, statistics tell us that moving is one of the most stressful life events we have to go through.
Some moves are not as easy as others and can be filled with stress, anxiety and emotion; these may be a result of an illness which forces sudden changes in the lifestyle of the homeowners.
As our society continues to age at an alarming rate, so do related illnesses such as: Alzheimer’s, dementia, cancer, and a number of other debilitating illnesses. Stress associated with decisions surrounding a move during these times can be overwhelming.
It’s important that families who are dealing with this type of stress consult with a company who can assist them in making smarter decisions regarding their relocation logistics. Having owned William C. Huff Companies for over 27 years, I do consider myself and our staff to be experts in assisting families with these sometimes difficult decisions.
Recently, I was asked to give a quote for a move from Naples to Michigan for an older couple who had been dealing with a crippling illness for the past two years. The time had come for them to move closer to family. The move needed to be done quickly and could have gone terribly wrong if not thought out precisely in the best interest of the elderly couple. Through a referral, the family contacted me first. I then met with them to see what their most important needs were. After an in-depth conversation, my team orchestrated a step-by-step plan that would minimize their stress based specifically on their health limitations to get them back with family as soon as possible.
Because our focus was on meeting their unique needs and not on profiting from the situation, they were able to get advice that they didn’t even know they needed. Another company just focusing on business profit might not have taken the time to design a plan that put the family’s needs first.
Due to illness or age, many of us will face a day when we will be forced to choose a move we don’t want to make or that is stressful. I’m relieved to know that when I face that day, I’ve already helped many families make that transition just a little easier. I hope I’ve paved the way for my own transition to not be a burden on my family and friends. Attention to details and planning are what makes William C. Huff Companies the best in the business of moving and logistics. Bottom line – we care!
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