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When we lose a loved one, we’re left with all the memories of our lives with them in it. It can be difficult to move on and feel happy when those memories are all around you. Every room, every doorway, and every inch can carry so much baggage. Sometimes, moving on requires moving into a new home or maybe even a new city. If you’ve decided a move may be what you need for a fresh start, here are some things to consider. 

Making the Right Choice for You 

Moving to a new home can be beneficial for those in mourning. When you are constantly surrounded by triggers for your grief, it can be impossible to truly move through your loss. This can be especially true when the life lost is that of someone close, such as a spouse. Losing a spouse can feel like losing a part of your own life, and staying in the same home can sometimes make that feeling worse. The death of a spouse can also leave you struggling to keep up with daily household maintenance. Whatever your motives, be sure to weigh your reasons for making a move and then start looking into options that will help you move forward.      

Finding the Right Fit in Your New Home   

The initial step in buying or selling a home, no matter the reasons, should be to reach out to the right real estate professional. You may need a buyer’s agent to help you look for your new home and a listing agent to help you sell your old one. The latter can help market your property so that it sells faster, so you can focus on finding your new one. In terms of a buyer’s agent, be sure to discuss your needs before starting to view homes. You may need to downsize to avoid maintaining a larger home, or perhaps you’d like something closer to your family. Be sure to start your home search with a realtor and by researching homes in your area that are within your price range. For example, homes in Chicago, Illinois, have sold an average of $298,000 in the last month, but your price may be different depending on your home needs.  woman in new home move away from grief

 

Going Through Your Memories  

If your grief is still fresh, packing can feel more like a burden than a simple task. Going through your belongings feels more like going through your memories, which makes it difficult to declutter and create a fresh start. Have a close friend or family member help you, and try to be as objective as possible when deciding what needs to stay and what you should let go. Hold onto photos and important mementos from your life together. For other everyday items that hold sentimental value, like a favorite T-shirt or bouquet of flowers, consider some more creative ways to make keepsakes without cluttering up your new home.  

 Getting Moved Into Your New Home   

When you are dealing with mourning and a move, it can be difficult to take care of all of the tasks involved with getting your belongings from one home to another. It may be in your best interest to look into hiring professional movers to assist you. Professional movers will know how to pack your memories and belongings so that they arrive in your new home without breaks or damage. Movers will also be able to more easily lift and transport boxes, as well as heavy items into their truck, and can even help you get your furniture in just the right place. If you cannot hire movers, think about asking family and friends help you with all the tasks it takes to start your new life and get settled in your new home.


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 Moving can be a positive way to deal with grief, especially when you lose a loved one you live with. Use the tips above to help navigate the process of finding your new home and beginning a fresh, new chapter in your life.  

Written by Lucille Rosetti. Lucille created TheBereaved.org as a means of sharing tools to help people through the grief process. Having lost some of the people closest to her, she understands what it’s like, and how it can be an emotional roller coaster that doesn’t always seem to make sense.