Grandparents and grandkids looking at a book together

Senior Living Move-In Checklist: How to Prepare to Move into a Senior Living Community

By the year 2030, 1 in 6 people will be aging seniors. While aging is a natural thing, it is not easy to deal with for many. Your loved ones are of utmost importance in this regard. When the time comes for a loved one to move into a senior living home, you want to be as prepared as possible. The more prep work you do, the smoother the transition. If you have a loved one that is getting up there in age, you have options. One of those options is senior living. A senior living community takes some of the stress off of the family and the one moving can feel some solace. In this guide, we’ll discuss a senior living move-in checklist so you and your family are more than prepared. Keep reading to learn exactly what you’ll need.


Finding the perfect senior living situation starts with proper research. When you start scoping out homes for your loved ones, you’ll find some with assisted living and memory care, and some with independent living.

Assisted living is when you’ll need staff to assist with bathing, dressing, medication, etc. Independent living is where a senior living apartment is available with amenities like dining, fitness, and social activities. Memory care supports residents and their families in managing memory loss, etc.

Be sure to take the necessary time to weigh all options. Your loved one will have preferences, needs, and wants. Take into account things like cost, location, reputation, and services available.

Make a senior living move-in checklist so you don’t miss anything.


To make the moving process for seniors as thorough as possible, you’ll want to plan a visit (even multiple times). You want to make your loved one as comfortable as possible beforehand.

Being able to see the senior living space in person will do a world of good in terms of organizing and deciding what belongings to bring.

Once your loved one has settled in, you’ll want to make them feel as peaceful as possible. This means visiting regularly so they will feel loved and supported throughout their transition.


Senior living can be a big financial decision for many. This is why we encourage you to set a budget and stick to it.

There will be plenty of financial arrangements and payment options to decide such as a monthly fee, entrance fee, etc. Weigh the common moving costs and see what works best for you and your family.


The moving process for seniors can be difficult due to the memories attached. It’s best to think of the positives and cut out the non-essential.

For your senior, it can be a good way to start fresh and downsize. Make three piles to decide what to keep, donate, and sell. Host a garage sale to keep up the positive spirit.

Focus on the practicality of the senior living situation and go from there. Be sure to put labels on boxes so that when you get to the senior living community, it’ll be easier to unpack.

Medical and Support Services

One of the most comforting parts of senior living community amenities is the medical and support services. This includes on-site healthcare services, medication management, and physical therapy.

Aside from these perks, you may need to plan accordingly for things like therapy, transportation to appointments, and specialized medical treatments.

Speak with your family and primary care physician about the best course of action to take.


Communication with your family is of utmost importance during this time. You want to ensure everyone is on the same page.

It can be an emotional and trying time but do your best to communicate your feelings openly and honestly with your family. This will make the transition to senior living for your loved one less stressful.


If your loved one is feeling too emotional on move-in day, a distraction is one way to help. You can have a meal with them or escort them to an event or activity.

It doesn’t need to be complicated. Be sure to give them warmth and love throughout the process. A little bit can go a long way.

If it is too much for you to handle, the staff can help assist you too. This isn’t an easy transition for anyone. Let any emotion that may arise pass through you naturally.

Make them feel as welcome as possible and assure them that the family is there for them whenever they need it.

Set Up New Home

Now it’s time to set up a new living arrangement for the senior in your life. Be sure to assist in setting up their senior living apartment so that it is to their liking.

You’ll want to organize their belongings and make them feel cozy at home. Ask the senior living staff to help facilitate the process, too.

Once everything is settled, explore the community and get to know the surroundings. Talk to fellow neighbors and residents to get them acquainted.

A Smooth Senior Living Transition

We hope our guide has alleviated some worries concerning senior living. Aging is a normal thing in life that every family goes through. A senior living community can make this process a lot simpler.

Once you get all your ducks in a row, you’ll want to find a community that feels right to you. Be sure to explore our communities at Inspired Living to find the perfect match. Contact us to have a helping hand every step of the way.