Making the most out of your new home.

Moving to a new home is never easy, but moving to a retirement home can be especially stressful. Whether you are making the move yourself, thinking of making the move or you just moved a loved one, there are a few things that can be done within the first 60 days to ensure success. 

You went for a tour, poured over brochures, and weighed your options, now you have chosen the retirement home that will best fit your needs. You are paying for not only your rent now but also for services and meals. This is your new home and you want to make the most of it.

It is important for the senior moving and the family members to help with the move to set expectations, not to assume everything will go smoothly and that all services will be in place immediately. 

The good news is that there are several steps that can be taken to ensure a smoother transition. Here are some tips for what to do during your first 60 days of living at a Retirement Home. 

You just made a big change, most likely have downsized, are surrounded by a lot more people and now have more assistance with daily living. 

1- Hire a professional downsizer- do not try to do it all on your own. It can be extremely overwhelming moving from a large house to a small one-bedroom or studio apartment. Professional downsizers can help you sort through your belongings and help you decide what to keep or sell what you do not want or need. 

2- Set up your space to best fit your current needs– like most people having to downsize, you are now living in a lot smaller space. Try to avoid having bulky furniture, store everyday items inaccessible places and make use of the common areas, these are your personal spaces as well. 

3- For resistant seniors consider bringing in a move in companion. Solva can refer you to companions who will spend dedicated one-on-one time with the senior and help make them feel more comfortable in their new environment.

4- Schedule a care conference with all the management staff after the first 30 days. Do not expect them to schedule it.  You will need to ask for it. This conference can help to answer any questions or concerns that are brewing. 

5 – Get to know your neighbors– your neighbors can be a great asset, they can be your new social support and provide helpful insider information about your new accommodations. 

6- Get to know the activity director and try something new– don’t knock it until you try it. Getting out and participating in activities around the community can help you meet new people and avoid boredom from sitting in your room. The activity staff can be helpful in recommending activities that you might enjoy. 

7- Attend an exercise class– exercise has so many benefits including feeling more energized, stronger muscles and it can be fun! The best part is that you do not even have to go outside to participate. 

8- Don’t eat dessert with every meal– unlike at home you are now having all your meals prepared for you. Most people tend to gain weight once they enter a retirement home. Although it is important to get proper nutrition, eating dessert with every meal does not support a healthy weight.

9- Get your hair done in the first week– everyone feels better with a haircut and most retirement homes have a hairdresser on-site and they are usually cheaper than a salon.

10- Don’t be shy, ask questions- you are not expected to know where everything is at all times. The staff is more than happy to answer your questions and help make day to day life more comfortable. 

Change is never easy, it will take time to adjust to the new environment and to get settled in. Working with a Senior Living Advisor can help ensure that you find a retirement community that will fit your needs and allows you to explore all your options. Solva Senior Living Advisors have all worked at retirement homes and seen and helped with the transition. Advisors can advocate on your behalf to help set you up for success at your new home. 

How does this all work?

Call us at 613-421-6073 or email

We provide the following free services:

1- Rapid Resources & Referrals

2 – In-Person Visits

3 – Arrange and Escort on Tours

4 – Advocacy during the selection and move in process.

5 – Resources for additional services


Written by Rachel Borzecki, 

Client Coordinator and Senior Living Advisor