Moving is one of the most stressful life events at any age—and for older adults who have spent decades in their homes, the transition is daunting and can even feel impossible. But, with Turnkey Transitions, late-in-life moving is made accessible, efficient and stress-free.
Cyndi Cummings is the founder of several nonprofits supporting the needs of older adults. She is also a REALTOR®, broker associate and president of The Cummings Home Team, and has seen firsthand that older individuals in Central Texas are an underserved and overlooked population.
With a passion for the senior community and dedication to making seniors’ lives easier and happier, she founded Turnkey Transitions in 2017 to alleviate the woes of moving. With Cummings’ help, difficult moves are simplified into an easy-to-follow, five-step strategy requiring little involvement from clients and their families.
1. Clients sit down with Cummings for a pre-move consultation
Every move is different, and outside factors can put pressure on senior adults to make decisions that may differ from their actual needs and desires. Cummings aims to be a third-party communicator who gets to the root of a client’s goal for their move.
“I think for many older adults, it’s nice to just ask them what they want and not tell them what they need,” Cummings said. “I really sit down and say, ‘How do you want this move to go?’”
During the pre-move consultation, Cummings helps set goals for the move and determines a timeline for putting a home on the market. She also explains Turnkey Transitions’ menu of services and the associated fees, as well as answers any questions a client may have about the upcoming events.
Even if a client is not quite ready to sell their home or move to a new location, it is never too early to call or sit down with Cummings to start discussing options. Equipped with a National Association of Senior Move Managers designation, Cummings is a one-stop resource for gentle and expert guidance regarding downsizing, rightsizing or simplifying one’s lifestyle.
2. Turnkey Transitions sorts, declutters and coordinates the sale or donation of unwanted items
For long-term residency moves, deciding what items to keep and which ones to let go of can be one of the most challenging tasks. Cummings said her empathetic nature and years of experience allow her to work with respect to a clients’ belongings while also being productive and skillful.
Cummings also desires to make clients’ donations as meaningful as possible by giving unwanted or unused items to people in the community who need it most and keeping them out of landfills. This may mean giving art supplies to a local school, clothes to charities, appliances to those without or gifting items to younger family members.
“We try to have people give away items that they’re going to give as a gift to family now so that they can enjoy their loved one using it,” Cummings said. “So instead of bringing the china with you to the senior living community that’s just going to sit on a top shelf, maybe now is the time to give it to a grandchild.”
3. Turnkey Transitions coordinates the moving and listing coordination
A fundamental advantage of choosing Turnkey Transitions is that every aspect of the process is completely worry-free for the client, including the actual moving of items and listing of a clients’ home.
“Literally, if you call us it is like just turning one key—but we’re turning 500 knobs behind you,” Cummings said.
Cummings has a network of reputable companies that she will hire, coordinate timelines for and see through until the end result is an attractive, sellable home. From movers to window washers, Cummings never misses one small detail—while clients sit back and relax without a care.
“No matter who we partner with, we are the project manager,” Cummings said. “So for our clients, that means there’s just one phone number to call ... The most important part is it’s seamless for our clients.”
4. Turnkey Transitions oversees the moving and unpacking process from start to finish
Upon a clients’ arrival to their new destination, boxes are already unpacked and all furniture and additional items are placed according to their preferences. The new property is livable and feels like home by the time they arrive.
“You can do it like the TV show. You can go away for the day, go get your nails done, go to lunch, and then come back in the afternoon and we’ll have your new home set up,” Cummings said.
5. Turnkey Transitions stages and sells your home
Lastly, Cummings is an expert on staging and selling homes. She has a storage unit filled with contemporary furnishings that she will bring in and use to stage a clients’ home, whether the home is vacant or needs a few extra pieces to spruce up the space.
“Statistically, staged homes sell faster and for more money,” Cummings said. “It’s just one more way that I’m helping get more money in [a client’s] pocket.”
Throughout the years, Cummings has spent endless hours training, networking and talking to other Realtors across the country to find best practices and solutions for late-in-life moves. She said her favorite part is giving confidence to clients who feel like they cannot do it on their own.
“I tell [clients], I’ve done this many times before,” Cummings said. “I’ve shown them that I can do it and I give them confidence that together, we can do it. The client often then feels like they can make the move. ‘I don’t have to be isolated and live in this home all by myself. I can do this.’”
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