Moving into your care home | Ben Care
Help and advice

Moving into your care home

Moving into a care home is a significant event, emotionally and physically, both for the person moving and the family or friends who are organising the move. It’s important to acknowledge that moving to a care home is a big transition for everyone. Taking some time to plan, talk and think through the practical aspects will help make the move-in process as smooth as possible. Here are some top tips for moving into a care home:


Talk (and listen)

On the emotional side of things, it’s important to talk about the process so you can deal with any questions and concerns. Encourage the person moving in to talk to family and friends about how they’re feeling. Talk to the care home if you have any questions at all, even if it seems like a small thing: can they keep food in the fridge? Can they bring their own pillows? What’s on the menu the week they move in? The staff at your care home are there to help you, it’s their whole job, so don’t be afraid to ask for help and support.

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What are the things they can take with them that will bring them comfort? Photographs, pictures or keepsakes that are special might be on that list. Ask your care home what furniture they can bring; a favourite chair or dressing table could help make their new room feel more like home. Bring their mobile phone, laptop or iPad and chargers so they can keep in touch with friends and family, listen to music or watch films.

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Some care homes like to create a life history book so they can learn about their new resident’s life, so it might be an idea to find some photos and keepsakes from throughout their life to share with their carers. You should also ask to see the care plan so you can discuss it and make sure all the details are accurate, especially when it comes to medication and any special dietary requirements.

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Pack enough clothes for two weeks, suitable for the time of year. Make sure all clothes are labelled with your loved one’s name so that they can be laundered and returned easily. Pack toiletries and take some books or games that they enjoy. Talk to your care home about what else they might need. For example, if there is a hydrotherapy pool they’ll need a swimming costume.

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Visit before moving day

If possible, arrange for your loved one to visit the care home for a morning or an afternoon to take a tour and meet their care teams and other residents. It’s nice to see familiar faces on move-in day and it makes the whole process much less stressful. Ask your care home what activities are happening that day so your loved one can join in with something fun straightaway.

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On moving day

If possible, once they are settled and you’ve sorted out their room, unpacked and been introduced them to their care team, you should gently leave saying you’ll pop back to see them tomorrow. You will probably have been there for some time dealing with paperwork and sorting out the room but once they are settled, it’s time to them to leave them to it so they can start to settle in.

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Give it time

Moving to a care home is hard, so your loved should expect to feel a little out of sorts for a week or two. Adjusting to new surroundings, new routines and new people can be very tiring so encourage them to rest, eat well and give themselves some time to get used to things. Most people settle in and find they enjoy living in a care home because they are being well looked after, they have company when they want it, they don’t have to worry about cooking, cleaning and laundry and there is help at hand whenever they need it.


Good luck with your care home move and if you have any questions about moving to a Ben care home, please call us and ask!