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Help Seniors Transition to a New Life

Moving from a family home can be traumatic. This business idea helps seniors downsize into a new, smaller living facility.
November 17, 2006

Even though many seniors want to live in their own homes as long as they can, others need or want to move on to one of the many residential options ahead. That transition is often a daunting one, though, leaving many seniors and their families reeling from the challenges. "There are often difficult family dynamics," says Steven Weisman, a Cambridge, Massachusetts, elder law attorney and author of Boomer or Bust. "Sometimes the children have competing interests. Sometimes they're half a continent away and need someone on location to help meet their parents' needs. This is a chance for entrepreneurs to do well in this area while doing good."

After working as an assisted living administrator, Bryan Neal, 34, saw so many problems with seniors on the move that he started Assisted Moving LLC in Plymouth, Michigan. "There are often 50 years of accumulated possessions in [their] homes," says Neal, whose 3-year-old company projects 2006 sales of $225,000. "Families call and ask if I'll be the villain, because Mom and Dad don't understand why everything can't go into the new place." Neal's company has a systematic downsizing plan complete with software showing the dimensions of the new home. Once the seniors see what will really fit, Assisted Moving helps them decide what to pass on, holds estate sales to sell other items, discards unwanted items and moves what the seniors keep into their new homes.

Getting Started
Before starting your own transition services business, consider the following: