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How Moves for Seniors Can Help Communities Manage Emergency Moves

Whether a pipe has burst, fire suppression sprinklers have been accidentally triggered, or a natural disaster is approaching, emergencies happen, and that means you may have to relocate residents quickly. 

Highlight: Holiday Freeze 

Thanks to unusually cold weather and numerous burst pipes, emergency relocations were the theme of December 2022 and January 2023. Moves for Seniors was the on-call logistics problem solver for more than 20 communities across 15 states over the holiday season. With broken pipes flooding units and common areas, these communities reached out to Moves For Seniors for urgent help to temporarily relocate dozens of residents. Some Communities needed residents moved across the hall, some to other wings, and some to other locations entirely. Some needed help moving must-have belongings, and some needed help moving all belongings and furniture. Kim Tapscott, Moves for Seniors’ Internal Moves Specialist, worked throughout the holidays (including Christmas Eve and New Year’s Day) to mobilize labor and moving teams and get solutions in place as quickly as possible. 

Tapscott says, “It was a crazy time! The extent of the cold front meant many communities in many regions were impacted at the same time, and it was horrible timing in terms of disrupting residents’ holidays. I’ve worked with some of the communities before, so we had a good plan in place, but others were dealing with these situations for the first time. 

My contacts are usually Executive Directors or Maintenance Directors, and there is so much for them to handle. They are so happy to pass all the logistics of resident relocation off to me. I just take that on and get things moved as quickly and painlessly as possible. That lets my partners handle all the other pieces of the situation – communication with residents and families, repairs, insurance claims, and so on. I keep them updated on scheduling for teams of movers or laborers so they don’t need to worry about the details. Once all the damage is addressed, I can jump back in to reverse the process and get residents’ belongings back to their units.”

No matter the circumstance, emergency moves require quick decision-making—sometimes without the usual requisite paperwork. They often involve last-minute adjustments as the full impact of the emergency is discovered, and they may even require that residents be moved to multiple temporary locations. Coordinating all of these logistics would be challenging at the best of times, let alone under the high-pressure circumstances of an emergency. 

With a decade of expertise and a nationwide network of labor, moving, storage, and organizing experts at our disposal, Moves For Seniors can help you navigate emergency situations with ease. You and your staff can focus on keeping residents safe and comfortable while overseeing repairs, remediation, and insurance claims, and we’ll handle the logistics necessitated by any emergency circumstance, such as:

  • Burst pipes
  • Flooding caused by fire suppression systems or overflowing plumbing fixtures
  • Natural disasters such as hurricanes or wildfires
  • Environmental clean up/renovation

Note: Our services also come in handy for planned relocations due to events such as:

  • Community closings
  • Community renovation projects

Read more about how we can help with planned relocations.

Let’s take a closer look at the comprehensive services Moves for Seniors can provide for senior living community emergencies that require temporary resident relocation, including:

  • Who you can expect to work with from Moves for Seniors
  • How Moves for Seniors simplifies emergency relocations
  • Keys to successful resident logistics during an emergency relocation

Who manages emergency moves/relocations for Moves for Seniors? 

By offloading the work of relocating resident belongings, your community managers and staff can focus on the rest of the matters at hand—keeping residents comfortable, managing any repairs or renovations, and keeping life as normal as possible. You can expect to work with some or all of the following Moves for Seniors pros:

  • A project manager: The dedicated point of contact for your staff. This person will work with you from the very beginning to understand the scope of the emergency or project, timelines, level of impact, objectives, and more. They will put together the rest of the team accordingly and oversee the process throughout. Project managers are critical to managing larger projects like renovations or community closings.
  • The operations manager (Internal Move Specialist): This person is typically your first point of contact and will run the project through completion. They will assign the workers and set the schedule for your emergency move. 
  • On-the-ground senior move facilitators: Typically professional organizers, this group will sort and pack belongings, photograph and document the original unit set up if needed, understand the needs of individual residents and establish trust, note special circumstances, and set up both the temporary unit and refinished unit to match the original as best as possible. Facilitators are typically involved in larger planned projects with multiple residents relocating
  • Movers and laborers: This team is on the ground handling the heavy lifting. They move items from one unit to another, to another facility, or to storage. They also prepare the furniture to keep it safe during transport. The number of people needed will vary based on the scope of the emergency move. We have teams available across the US and can coordinate moving teams of any size. 

6 Ways MFS Simplifies Emergency Relocations

From start to finish, the Moves for Seniors project team is ready to help you plan and manage the emergency residential relocation process. The services included in your emergency moving plan will depend on the exact nature and urgency of the situation. Here are six common ways Moves for Seniors will help:

  1. Hiring and coordinating with local moving and labor teams on-site to relocate belongings
  2. Transport of emergency supplies such as cots to temporary locations
  3. Moving resident items back to their unit once the situation is resolved
  4. Relocation of common area furniture and large/heavy items
  5. Partnership on adjustments to standard billing practices to ensure quick response
  6. If/when needed, utilization of local organizers to set up the temporary or original unit

3 keys to a successful emergency relocation 

Moves for Seniors offers consistent and efficient organizational support, reduces risk and liability costs for your community managers and staff, and eases the stress of transitioning residents during emergency situations. We believe there are three keys to a successful temporary relocation:

  • Safety: Our team will clear away any clutter, tidy up loose cables, and generally make sure there are no tripping or other hazardous items. 
  • Logistical organization: We will make all the necessary plans to make sure there’s a place for all belongings. We’ll work with your team to define the parameters of what each resident can bring with them and which needs to be placed in storage, and we’ll also arrange for storage and transport to and from all locations.
  • Stress relief: Moves For Seniors’ support frees up your team to focus on remediation, repairs, and resident concerns.

Wrapping Up

Both moves and emergency situations are stressful experiences. Being uprooted from a senior living community during an emergency situation can be even more stressful for seniors than usual, and the process of temporarily relocating residents while you’re dealing with the emergency can also be daunting for community managers and staff. Moves for Seniors understands, and we’re here to help.

Our emergency relocation team can help your community managers and staff streamline the entire process from start to finish by helping with everything from securing movers and labor, to planning, scheduling, packing and unpacking, and setting up units. 

Ready to learn more about MFS’s emergency relocation services for your portfolio of communities? Contact us today (Bob Burg @ [email protected]) —it’s much better to have your plan in place early.