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REAL ESTATE MOVING ON


current economy and real estate market, and overwhelmed by all the logistical details of moving from their home. One of the major hurdles that face older


adults in transition is the sale of their biggest asset – their home. “So many people are frozen and uterly certain that they can’t sell their house or are going to be forced to sell it at such a loss so they don’t want to do it,” says Senior Real Estate Specialist Kathy Bryant. A down housing market is certainly reason


for concern, but as Bryant points out, it doesn’t need to be a deterrent to geting on with your life. “It’s not just about the dollar amount that


people get from the sale of their home,” Bryant says, “it’s about their quality of life.” In many ways, the selling process is no


different for a senior than it would be for anyone else. As Bryant points out, the one big difference is the amount of stress. “If they’ve been in their home for 40 or 50 years, everything is amplified,” she says. “An older person may feel more vulnerable, more concerned and not as likely to be able to make decisions as easily.” Te first step, Bryant says, is find out the value


of your home from a professional appraiser. It’s also a good idea to do your homework and research the various retirement communities in which you might want to live – pay them a visit, chat with other residents and get a feel for the lifestyle there. Tis is also the time when you’ll want to determine if there is any repair work that needs to be done to your home.


“By planning in advance,” Bryant says, “you


gain control over your personal living situation.” Now that the decision to sell has been made,


the next question is: who wants to buy? When a potential buyer walks through the


front door they need to feel like this is the place they want to live. Many times, when homeowners have lived in the same place for many years, the furnishing, while nice, may be outdated. Not too inviting to a younger buyer; and that’s where a home stager goes to work. “Te three things that sell a house are


condition, price and presentation. My goal is to accent what is going on in the room and have that be the star,” says Angela Hardiman, owner of Designology Home Staging. “I want my houses to look beautifully decorated with a great atmosphere so that it will reach the target demographic that is going to be buying that house. What we don’t want is for people to walk in the door and think, ‘Oh, this house has been staged.’ I want the home to look real.” But don’t think all your furnishings have to


go. Te idea, Hardiman says, is to strive for the sophisticated yet casual “Potery Barn look.” “It’s so much easier to convert a home from the ‘60 and ‘70s than it is with one from the ‘80s when there was all this Southwest style with pastel colors,” Hardiman says. “If you can take a litle bit of modern and through in a litle antique and contemporary, you’re doing really well.” With a lifetime of possessions and memories packed into their home, many older adults feel


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