Moving is never easy for senior citizens. It often represents a loss of independence and letting go of a home that has meant a lot to them over the years. To ensure your parents don't undergo any more stress than necessary at this time (and simultaneously protect your own sanity, too), follow these tips as you help your senior parents move.

Communicate about feelings.

It's easy to just roll your eyes and ignore your parents when they protest against moving, or seem unwilling to budge on aspects of moving. But remember that this is an emotional time for them. If you take a few minutes to listen to their feelings and worries regarding the move, you may find that they become easier to work with. Like anyone else, your parents will feel better about their worries and problems after voicing them to someone.

Help them plan their new home before the move.

Part of your parents' fear may be moving into a space that's unknown and does not seem as comfortable or friendly as the home they're leaving. Helping your parent plan out the layout of their home before the actual move can help them get over this fear. Talk about where you'll put certain pieces of meaningful furniture, where you can display certain photos, and where there will be room for hobby items like quilting supplies or card games. In planning these aspects, your parents will realize that they're not leaving behind as much as they thought.

Hire professional movers.

Working with your parents to pack everything up is often the most stressful part of moving. They'll come across things they have not seen in years, and suddenly you'll have spent hours on the living room floor chatting about an old friend rather than packing. Hire local movers to pack items so you can avoid this stressful task. There will be more time to go through items and reminisce about them once your parents are safely moved in to their new home. 

Rent a storage unit.

If your parents are downsizing, there may not be room in the new home for everything. Parting with certain items can be hard, but renting a storage unit can make it easier. Your parents will likely have an easier time deciding to put an unneeded item in storage than getting rid of it entirely. A few months after the move, when things have calmed down, you can go back to the storage unit and get rid of items that aren't needed.