After Losing A Spouse, A Senior Should Downsize

Losing your husband or wife was more difficult than words can convey. There is no way to describe the sudden loss you experienced, and living in the old house you two shared can make the healing process even more difficult. Not only does the place remind you of your spouse, it’s now too big for you. There are too many rooms to clean, and you have space that’s going unused.

That’s why it can make sense to downsize after losing a spouse. By moving into a smaller home, you can save money and move forward. You can also use this as a time to declutter by only keeping what you really need.

Why Seniors Should Downsize In This Case

When it comes to downsizing your home, there are two main reasons why you should: finances and moving forward. shows why making a move to a smaller home can be a great financial decision for seniors. Take a big house that costs $250,000. By moving into one that costs $150,000, you can end up saving over $6,000 each year. When you’re a senior in retirement, the savings can really make life better for you.

When you have recently lost your spouse, there’s another consideration. Staying in that old home can be a constant reminder of who you lost. This can delay or stop your grieving process and prevent you from moving past the mourning. When dealing with such a loss, moving forward is more important than ever. Remember that you’re not trying to forget the spouse — you’re only trying to move past the pain.

Tips To Help Seniors Move More Easily

After some thought and exploring your options, you’ve decided that downsizing has enough benefits to warrant trying it. You teamed up with a realtor and found the right home. It’s smaller, cheaper, and a great place to build new memories. Now you just have to pack.


Before you begin, you need to sort through your belongings. After all, you’re moving into a smaller place. You can’t bring everything with you.


When it comes to deciding what to pack and what to give away, an important key is to start early. Going through all your possessions takes time. Not only will you spend time reminiscing, you likely have many objects that you don’t need anymore. Donating these items can help you fit into your new space — and make moving easier. has some great tips on how seniors can pack for a move:

  • Break packing into smaller jobs. This way, you don’t feel overwhelmed with having to box up everything in your kitchen at one time.
  • Ask friends and family for help. Not only does this help make packing easier on you, it takes less time this way. This can be very helpful when trying to go through the possessions of your late spouse.
  • Create an “Open First” box. Include all the things you’ll need immediately in your new home, such as medication, reading glasses, documents, and toiletries.

The Problem With Alzheimer’s

Deciding to downsize and sorting through your belongings are both daunting tasks, especially after the death of your spouse. But if you have problems with Alzheimer’s or dementia, these can become especially stressful. Change is not a friend of Alzheimer’s.


To help make this transition successful, the Mayo Clinic says to place familiar objects and photos around your new home. This can help remind you that you’re home if you get confused, and it also helps you feel at home.

You Can Make This Move

Moving to a new home is stressful. When you’ve lost a spouse, it can also lead to feeling bitter or afraid. But there are solid benefits for seniors who downsize their home. After you’ve decluttered your possessions, you can live more simply — and you can move forward with your life.