Most Seniors Downsize

Posted on: April 30th, 2013 by Melinda Anderson | No Comments


Calling in a pro can help keep emotions out of deciding what to do with all that “stuff”

Downsizing a lifetime of possessions

— Downsizing can be a tough process for anyone, but especially for seniors who find themselves with large homes no longer full of children. More and more are tackling the huge job of downsizing their living spaces. In fact, about six percent of Americans between the ages of 55 and 64 move each year, according to the Over-50 Council of the National Association of Home Builders.

As seniors reach the time to downsize belongings and move into smaller, more manageable homes, many have a hard time figuring out what to do with all of the “stuff ” they’ve accumulated over the years. Local professional organizer Melinda Anderson, member of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO®), specializes in downsizing and organizing seniors’ living spaces.

“A major reason seniors have a hard time downsizing is they feel they are the ‘keepers’ of family heirlooms and so they have a hard time getting rid of items which they don’t really have room for anymore,” said Anderson.

Anderson offers the following tips for seniors taking the plunge into a more simplified lifestyle:

  • Start looking for other family members who would like to have heirloom pieces now, especially if they are not being used on a regular basis. There are many organizations that accept donations of valuable heirlooms in support of a worthy cause. Professional organizers can help seniors sort through household items to strategically figure out what will work in their new space. They also can help seniors identify which organizations to turn to that are best at finding new homes for family heirlooms.
  • Find movers specializing in making the transition easier for seniors. Professional organizers can help find the perfect “mover match” for a client, and can help pare down items before the move making the process easier at moving time.
  • Have a professional organizer reassess every five to ten years or as needed to make sure the senior’s home is still working for them. Sometimes seniors don’t realize that everyday activities and household chores can be made easier just by adjusting the setup in their homes. Professional organizers are great resources to help identify easy ways seniors can simplify to improve their overall quality of life.

“We are not trying to tell them what stays and what goes, but we ask the tough questions to help them decide for themselves,” Anderson says. “Sometimes just getting started is the hardest part, and having a professional with an outside point of view to assist is the perfect way to move forward.”

NAPO® members serve both corporate and residential clients specialize in a wide range of services, such as corporate or residential organizing, and many have specialties in niche areas like garages, moving/downsizing, or even helping businesses with time and data management. Melinda Anderson and Southern Home Organizers specialize in downsizing the client’s current home, plus unpacking and organizing in the new home. Additionally, NAPO® offers members education on the most cutting-edge techniques and products.

AFTER Downsizing
AFTER Downsizing

For Further Information:

Melinda Anderson, CPO

Southern Home Organizers


About NAPO® (

The premier national association dedicated to the field of organizing, the National Association of Professional Organizers® (NAPO®) is The Organizing Authority. Formed in 1985 as a not-for-profit professional educational association, NAPO® is dedicated to serving its thousands of members through education, networking, industry resources, and promoting the profession to the public. NAPO’s mission is to develop, lead, and promote professional organizers and the organizing industry. The association is affiliated with the National Association of Senior Move Managers (NASMM), the National Study Group on Chronic Disorganization (NSGCD), and Professional Organizers in Canada (POC).

As the oldest and largest professional educational association for professional organizers, NAPO® supported the launch of the Board of Certified Professional Organizers® (BCPO®) and the Certified Professional Organizer® (CPO®) exam, a separate independent certification program for the entire organizing industry.

ATLANTA, Georgia. (November 2, 2011)

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