Happy Senior Couple

Supporting Seniors Who Live at Home

The 4 stages of aging in place:

1. Fully Independent at Home
2. Declining Mobility
3. Difficulty with Personal Care
4. Increasing Healthcare Concerns

Cognitive decline, deteriorating health, and limited mobility are just a few of the issues that come with aging, and that can make it harder for seniors to live independently.  However, with proper preparation, appropriate home care services, and a strong network of support, seniors can thrive at home.

To help aging adults and their families navigate this option, HomeCare.org developed a resource that covers the programs, services, payment options, and providers for senior residents that are available in Wisconsin.  You can review their helpful guides here:

  • Home Care Wisconsin
    • The guide reviews the types of care available in the state and the programs available to help residents afford their care.
  • Does Medicare Cover In-Home Care?
    • In many cases, the first place seniors turn is Medicare.  While Medicare covers in-home care services in some circumstances, it doesn’t offer assistance for everyone and all types of home care.  If you’re unsure if Medicare will cover in-home care for yourself or a loved one, this guide is for you.
  • How Much Does 24/7 In-Home Care Cost?
    • In this guide, it’s explained how much 24/7 in-home care costs, as well as the costs of other types of senior care.  Also provided is some information on financial assistance programs so you can make the best choice for your loved one and budget.
  • Sleep & Bedroom Safety for Seniors
    • One of the most common rooms in the home for seniors to fall in is the bedroom.  In this guide to bedroom safety, information is provided about the risks seniors face in their own bedrooms, how to improve your safety and resources that may be available to help you make your bedroom safer – especially if you’re aging in place and have limited mobility and resources for home improvements.
  • Exercise Guide for Seniors Aging in Place
    • This guide has helpful tips for seniors aging in place who need exercise ideas.  It goes over how to put together a productive wellness program, what kind of exercises work best for seniors at home and things to look for when you’re working out to avoid injuries and keep on track.
  • How to Become a Home Healthcare Nurse
    • If you are interested in this career path and want to learn more, this guide is for you.  Read on to find in-depth information on what services home healthcare nurses provide, education and training requirements, how to find a job, and more.
  • Mental Health & Older Adults
    • HomeCare.org partnered with YouGov to survey 1,000 American adults who have parents over the age of 60.  Respondents were asked questions about their parents based on in-person or virtual meetings and conversations.  You can learn more about the Household Pulse Survey here, and you can find out more about the specifics of what and how the survey questions were asked.
Warming Feet by Fireplace

Firewood Type Matters

By Guest Writer: Gary Zagar

If you haven’t done so, it is time to stock up on firewood for the cold winter ahead!

Living room with wood burning fireplaceWhat constitutes good firewood?  Well, the first thing is to make sure it is dry and kept in a dry location.  If firewood is wet, it can cause soot or lung irritants like moss and mold which would not be good for the family.

The best wood type in my opinion is Hickory.  Black Locust is probably the ultimate firewood, but it is rare to find.  Hickory is a great plentiful hardwood that burns long and has a terrific aroma to it.  Hickory also burns very hot, so it has the trifecta as far as firewood is concerned.


The following is a list of wood types that would do well in your wood-burning fireplace:

  • Hickory – All types, it has a low spark potential and gives off great heat per cord.
  • White Oak – This oak is dense and burns hot
  • Red Oak – Not as dense as the White Oak but it smells great and burns medium
  • White Ash – Few sparks and pops, burns about as well as Red Oak.  Although good luck finding this as the Ash Borer is diminishing the supply of this wood.
  • Hard Maple – Another good wood, if there is a little moisture it will give a little snap, crackle and pop
  • Sycamore – Has a low snap potential but it is a softer tree, so it doesn’t burn as hot
  • American Elm – Elm is a hair softer than Sycamore and burns about the same and burns medium


Firewood in back of pickup truckBe sure to question your firewood supplier about the wood type!

Softwoods such as the Silver Maples, Southern Pines, Cottonwoods and Willows will really soot up your chimney.  They also can be dangerous as the snap, crackle and pop potential is high which can lead to a fire or burn you.


Here’s wishing you a chilly season full of warm cozy nights curled up by your fireplace.

Gary Zagar has been an expert in the turf industry since 1986.  His experience includes positions as a Director of Golf Course Maintenance, Director of Maintenance and a Landscaping Specialist in charge of 120 commercial properties.

How to Avoid Real Estate Cyber Scams

Here are a few tips from the Wisconsin REALTORS® Association to help home buyers and sellers recognize and avoid real estate scams:

The post How to Avoid Real Estate Cyber Scams appeared first on Randy Lenz | Real Estate.

Celebrating Homeownership

As Homeownership Month continues, RASCW hopes to facilitate a conversation – engaging current and future homeowners – to highlight the importance and critical benefits of homeownership in America.

The post Celebrating Homeownership appeared first on Randy Lenz | Real Estate.

putting tape on box

Steps for a Low-Stress Senior Move

A Guide to Moving for Seniors

PART 5  |  Steps for a Low-Stress Senior Move

Over the past two decades, increasing attention has been paid to relocation stress syndrome (RSS), which is also known as transfer trauma. RSS is a formal nursing diagnosis characterized by a combination of physio-logic and psycho-logic disturbances that occur as a result of transferring a person from one environment to another.

Symptoms of relocation stress syndrome include exhaustion, sleep disturbances, anxiety, grief and loss, depression and disorientation. In seniors, these symptoms are exacerbated by dementia, mild cognitive impairment, poor physical health, frailty, lack of a support system, and sensory impairment. For these seniors in particular, the resulting confusion, depression and agitation have led to increased falls, undesirable weight loss and self-care deficits.

Continue reading


21 Tips for Seniors to Declutter & Get Rid of Junk

A Guide to Moving for Seniors

PART 4  |  21 Tips to Declutter & Get Rid of Junk

For many of us, belongings that once brought us pleasure now seem like a burden, extra weight we would rather not have. But sorting through a lifetime of accumulations and deciding to part with them is hard.

Think of downsizing from a home of decades like losing 100 pounds. You didn’t gain the weight overnight, and you can’t lose it overnight, either. Your belongings are like those pounds. It took years to accumulate them, and sorting through them will take time. Just as each pound, taken individually, doesn’t appear to make a difference, there may not seem to be a lot of improvement from each sorting session. But losing 100 pounds is accomplished by losing one pound one hundred times, and with planning, patience and perseverance, you can get ready to move and maximize your home’s marketability, one bag at a time.

Here are some proven tips and techniques that you can begin implementing today, even if your move is years away. Remember that the key to losing 100 pounds is not losing the 100th pound; it’s losing the first one. The key to downsizing is not finishing the process; it’s starting it.

Continue reading

dad & daughter talking

What to Consider Before Moving an Aging Loved One into Your Home

A Guide to Moving for Seniors

PART 3  |  What to Consider Before Moving an Aging Loved One into Your Home

If you decide to move an elderly parent or other aging relative in with you, you won’t be alone: One out of every four caregivers lives with the elderly or disabled loved one he or she cares for.

This arrangement can have many positives. If your parent or other loved one is still relatively healthy, they may be able to babysit or otherwise help around the house, contribute financially, and get to know your children in a way that would never be possible with only occasional visits.

But it’s not right for everyone. It may be cheaper than putting the person in a nursing home (which costs about $80,000 per year on average) or an assisted living facility (about $43,000 per year on average), but you could pay a heavy price in terms of time, stress, fatigue, and strained relations.

Take the time to consider the following nine questions when deciding whether to have someone live with you.

Continue reading

Wheelchair Handicapped Access Ramp

Preparing a New Home for Seniors

A Guide to Moving for Seniors

PART 2  |  Preparing a New Home

Once you’ve made the decision to downsize, you should consider many factors in choosing a new place to live, including safety features, convenience and whether your health might deteriorate.

But no matter what amount of space you downsize to, the feel is what’s most important, says Rob Krohn, the franchise marketing manager at Epcon Communities, a builder of 55-plus communities. He cautions against settling for a property that doesn’t feel comfortable.

“You want your new, downsized space to feel like home, even if it’s smaller than what you’ve be used to for years,” he says.

Continue reading

Senior couple moving

Signs It’s Time to Downsize Your Home

A Guide to Moving for Seniors

PART 1  |  Signs It’s Time to Downsize Your Home

Over the years, you’ve probably felt like your home’s footprint just wasn’t big enough. Whether the closets were too small or the number of cabinets too few, you may have dreamed of relocating to a larger space.

But as a senior, that once-too-small abode might be more space than you need or want.

At the same time, the sentiment of moving away from the home where you raised your family or enjoyed gardening for decades pulls at your heartstrings, leaving you unsure about whether or not downsizing is the right decision.

Anytime safety or physical limitations like the inability to live alone or use stairs exist, it’s time to consider relocating. But there are a few other less obvious indicators for seniors to downsize, too.

Continue reading

interior storage

Max Out Your Tiny Living Space

Between micro-apartments, tiny homes, and even van life, the real estate industry is taking the saying “less is more” to previously unknown levels. And while we can all get behind the idea of streamlining your life and shedding possessions that no longer meet your needs, you only need to watch (maybe) half an episode of Tiny House Hunters to realize that collectively, our desire to live in a smaller space is being eclipsed by all our possessions. (“I just wish there was more storage space!”)

Continue reading

8 Eye-Opening Things Home Inspectors CAN’T Tell You

What’s included in a home inspection may not be as important as what isn’t.

Oh sure, a seasoned inspector will know if a home is a safe bet or full of red flags. But they’re actually bound by a set of rules that limit what they can tell you.

Here’s what they can’t say:

What a Home Inspector Won't Tell You

Why Madison is a Great Option for Retirees!

By Barbara Thompson Senior Care Advocate SeniorHomes.com Thinking about where you’d like to settle for your golden years?  Choosing a new city for your retirement is an exciting time.  You can base your decision on the things that make you happy rather than focusing on being close to work or considering where to raise a […]

The post Why Madison is a Great Option for Retirees! appeared first on Randy Lenz | Real Estate.

Madison a Retirement Hotspot

Why Madison is a Great Option for Retirees!

By Barbara Thompson
Senior Care Advocate

Thinking about where you’d like to settle for your golden years?  Choosing a new city for your retirement is an exciting time.  You can base your decision on the things that make you happy rather than focusing on being close to work or considering where to raise a family.  If Madison, Wisconsin isn’t already on your shortlist, it certainly needs to be added.

Continue reading

We Need Homes!

Don’t let the fear of not finding a home to move in to stop you from moving on with your life.  Let’s get together to discuss ways to set expectations with potential buyers from the start.

First-time homebuyers are flocking to the real estate market by the thousands to find their dream homes in order to make their dreams of homeownership a reality.  Unfortunately for many, the inventory of starter and trade-up homes has struggled to keep up with demand!

According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the inventory of homes for sale dropped 7.1% year-over-year to a 4.3-month supply and is down for the 25thconsecutive month!

Some homeowners may be hesitant to list their homes for sale because they are worried that they will also have a problem finding a home to buy and move in to.  This is a legitimate concern; no one wants to sell their home quickly and not have anywhere to live.

But there is good news!  If you’re thinking of moving up to a luxury or premium home, there is more inventory available in these markets and you may even get a great deal on a home that has been on the market for a while.

If you’re the owner of a starter home and you’re looking to move into a trade-up home or if you’re just looking to relocate to a new area in a home of the same size, hope remains!

In many markets, homeowners are building contingency plans into their contracts.  This means that the homeowner builds in extra time before they close in order to find their dream home and they are upfront about the contingency with any buyers who come to see the house.

Your home is an oasis to buyers who are searching for homes in today’s market.  The right buyers will most likely sympathize and wait for you and your family to find your next home.

price impacts visibility

Why Your Home Hasn’t Sold Yet

keys to your houseHave you received little, if any, offers on your home that’s listed for sale?

You might want to review the asking price!  If your home has been on the market for a while, even just a month and you haven’t received any offers or even a nibble — yes, it’s probably the price!  Consider the market value, if it’s priced at even 10% above its value that could seriously narrow the number of prospective buyers interested in viewing your house!

Continue reading

Spring Homebuying

How the Spring Housing Market Can Benefit You

Today, many real estate conversations center on the lack of inventory for home buyers.  Don’t let this deter you from your home search!  This spring can be the optimum time for you to benefit as a home buyer!  That’s right … if you’ve been dabbling with the idea, NextHome Metro Group can help!  Let’s meet and discuss your options — don’t let this great opportunity slide by.  There’s no obligation, no pressure, when sitting down with a NHMG real estate professional for spring housing market insight and advice.

Here are the 4 top reasons to consider BUYING a home today:

Continue reading

Increasing mortgage rates affect home value.

The Impact of Mortgage Rates on Home Values

Property Value Impacted by Mortgage Rates

Many real estate experts have noted the possible effect that rising rates will have now and in the near future on the value of homes.  Low mortgage rates were a major factor in the market’s recovery the past several years.

The Mortgage Bankers Association, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the National Association of Realtors (NAR) all project 2017 mortgage interest rates will rise. Increasing interest rates will definitely impact purchasers and may stifle demand.  The fed has already indicated they will most likely raise rates soon, possibly in March.

Continue reading

Multi-Generation Family

Empty Nest to Full House —The Multi-Generational Family

Multi-generational households typically occur when adult children (over the age of 25) either choose to, or need to, remain living in their parent’s home, and then have children of their own.  These households also occur when grandparents join their adult children and grandchildren in their home.

Continue reading