• All threads and posts regarding Coronavirus COVID-19 can now be found in our new area specifically for Coronavirus COVID-19 discussion.

    You can directly access this area >here<.

Clearing Mum's home

Normaleila

Registered User
Jun 4, 2016
734
Thank you - I remember waking up a couple of days afterwards and thinking I have to live the rest of my life with this awful sadness - and I have done, we can do remarkable things sometimes can't we?
You're certainly remarkable x
 

Peppie

Registered User
Jul 9, 2017
48
Today I have to continue the process of emptying Mum's home so it can be sold as she's moved into a care home. I cleared Dad's things in the summer after he died and that wasn't too difficult but with Mum's it's different . There's little room in the CH for ornaments and we've already got some in there. I don't seem to be able to give things away without heart break even to the local charity shop. What if i give something away and she remembers and asks for it ? My house is now full of boxes to be kept until later ! We will have to tell Mum today that it has to be sold. They lived there 42 years and it's all being put into boxes and given away . So sad . On top of everything else it's so draining .
 

Peppie

Registered User
Jul 9, 2017
48
Hi I also had to do the same in August it's difficult and heartbreaking It took me a month day after day I really feel for you but once it's done you feel better about it but I also didn't tell my dad I still haven't the first few weeks he asked me about his house but it got less and less now he never mentions it I couldn't bear the thought of upsetting him by telling him and I'm so glad I didn't he didn't need to know it's hard enough for us who are left to deal with it but we do deal with it because we have to but our loved ones with dementia don't need to have that upset I hope it all goes well and it's over soon for you take care.
 

Susan11

Registered User
Nov 18, 2018
2,101
Thanks to everyone for their helpfully comments. I now have the house tidy so I'm going to put it up for sale soon. At present I go to visit Mum every other weekend spending about £50 on petrol each trip. I take food up with me for breakfast and an evening meal...usually just pasta and cook it in Mum's house. When the house is sold we will have to stay in a hotel and eat out and I think it will cost about £260 a month to visit Mum. That's a lot of money. I have POA for my Mum. Is it reasonable for her to contribute to this cost? She is self funding in her CH. Sounds dreadfull asking this question as i dont want to think of visiting Mum as a cost but in practice it is expensive.
 

Jintyf

Registered User
Jun 14, 2013
47
I'm in same situation Susan11...although Mums Nursing Home is near me so I don't have travel costs.
House went on market three weeks ago and we had an offer yesterday that we have accepted. Need to be cleared out for 31st May. I've a few weeks yet but it is very daunting.

Not helped in that Mum is very unhappy and constantly asking to go home. When I visited last night she said I had made all the arrangements to have her kept a prisoner and that she wasn't staying. She says it's ok for you but I can't sleep another night here..... it's very upsetting. I found her a lovely home and the staff are great. She's been there nearly 4 weeks (costs a small fortune) and she just can't settle. I'm hoping in time this will all become easier...she expects me in every day. And I'm feeling guilty if I don't visit. I need to pull back for my own health really - it's still exhausting me.

Sorry - just had to get that off my chest.

As for funding your visits, I can't see there should be an issue as it is for your Mums wellbeing that you are visiting her? Obvs keep receipts. Although others may have more experience in this....good luck.
 

elvismad

Registered User
Jan 8, 2012
289
It does work out expensive doesn't it? I get the train to mums every weekend and travel back same day (6 hour round trip works out about £40 or £160 a month. Staying overnight to see her 2 days is prohibitively expensive and to be honest, I want to spend time with my husband. Mum has little in the way of savings and is not self funding. At the moment I am managing.
@Susan11 please update us with whatever you find out.
 

love.dad.but..

Registered User
Jan 16, 2014
4,496
Kent
If you are unsure phone the OPG as has been suggested they always seem very helpful however I can share what I did for dad which I felt was fair and reasonable. I visited dad in his NH every other day (1.5 hours round trip) partly to give him social company but importantly as he was difficult to make sure he was being looked after well and I was able to discuss anything concerning in early developing stage. I had poa health as well as finance for dad so I also saw these visits as partly carryying out my responsibility as his attorney. He was a self funder and following his house sale had more than adequate funds for his remaining years x 3 which I think is relative! With all this in mind I felt it was fair for dad to cover half my petrol costs and although I can't be sure obviously as I was unable to ask his view...I know that my pre dementia dad would have agreed. This was my only expense part covered all other monies spent were directly for dad's practical and NH needs. With regard to possible hotel cost if only for 1 or 2 nights then the cheap hotel chains which are adequate for your purpose can be booked at a very reasonable rate if booked in advance as you know your pattern of visiting.
 

Susan11

Registered User
Nov 18, 2018
2,101
Thank you to everyone for your replies. I think I have decided that as I used visit once a month and now visit twice I will pay for one visit and Mum can pay for the other visit. I really feel Mum would be happy with this. When the house is sold we will stay at the local Premier Inn and eat at Sainsbury's to keep costs down. She is self funding and if it looks like we will have a problem later with Deprivation of Assets i will just have to return the money! I'm an only child so it's not as if I'm going to deprive anyone of their inheritance.
Thanks for your opinions and info. I really appreciate your input.
 

AliceA

Registered User
May 27, 2016
2,807
Thank you - I remember waking up a couple of days afterwards and thinking I have to live the rest of my life with this awful sadness - and I have done, we can do remarkable things sometimes can't we?
I am not sure how we find the strength but we do with a grace, mine comes when I need it but not before. You are a brave lady. X
 

Witzend

Registered User
Aug 29, 2007
4,291
SW London
Yes, it's truly horrible - to me it's a lot worse clearing a house when someone's still alive, than after they've died (I've done both) - you feel as if you're throwing their life away. There is bound to be so much stuff of sentimental value, which nobody has room for.
One thing I kept from my mother's house was the wooden spoon she'd had for ever - very worn down on one side from so many years of use, but I couldn't bear to chuck it.
(Dh has now damaged it by putting it in the dishwasher despite strict instructions not to - grrrr)

One thing we did when clearing her house, was to announce an 'open afternoon' on the local Freecycle - it was amazing what people came and took away. It certainly saved a few trips to the tip or charity shops..
 

Susan11

Registered User
Nov 18, 2018
2,101
Well it has come to the crunch and have put my Mum's house on the market. She has been in a CH for 10 months and will not be returning to it. I have POA so have the authority but I won't be able to tell her. But I don't really feel comfortable about it. I know in my head it's necessary but my heart is breaking. It's not my home. It's hers. Mum and Dad lived there together for over 40 years. What right have I to sell it. It's heart breaking. Is this the right thing to do or should I keep it until she definitely doesn't need it anymore ...however long that is.
 

anxious annie

Registered User
Jan 2, 2019
260
It must be a very difficult thing to do, but the right decision to sell as you know that your mum won't be returning there. Sending you hugs and strength x
 

Susan11

Registered User
Nov 18, 2018
2,101
I've been a bit lazy as it's lovely to stay in Mum's house when I come up to visit but in the future it will have to be a Premier Inn. Needs more organising and booking in advance. Hope there aren't too many emergencies that involve racing up the country and booking a hotel at the last minute.
Thank you for the kind thoughts and hugs
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
9,049
Yorkshire
To be honest @Susan11 it was a weight off my mind when I could finally sell my dad's property .. I had been worrying about maintenance and such, especially having to visit at least once a week for the insurance.
I felt I was fulfilling my responsibilities to dad, rather than going behind his back. Even clearing the house seemed therapeutic as I took my time and was able to keep lots of both useful and sentimental items .. hard work though, physically and emotionally.
It's definitely the right thing for you to do now. Another kindness you can do for your dad. I hope it goes well.
 

Sarasa

Registered User
Apr 13, 2018
1,213
I'm in the process of clearing mum's home too, horrible to do while she is still alive. She agreed to the family helping her to sell her place last summer, but things have moved on and she is now in a home, but we have a buyer and the sale appears to be going through OK. Today she was talking about either wanting to back to live there or taking all the money after the sale and blowing it on having a good time. mmmmm.
My husband and I spent a few hours there on Wednesday starting to get rid of things. Mum isn't a hoarder, but we still managed to get rid of about twenty bags of out of date food, half-used toiletries etc. There is still a lot to do but we identified some of the things the family will want to keep. My husband was slightly surprised when I refused to let him chuck out her tea caddie. I think I have a nightmare scenario in my head where she did manage to persuade someone she could live at home and she'd notice if that was gone!
 

silversea2020

Registered User
May 12, 2019
81
I absolutely hated having to sell my mums home while she was alive and in a care home - filled me with dread and the obvious guilt but once I started the process it got a little easier. I used to go over & mow the lawns and bring back stuff bit-by-bit...sifting out as I went ....once completion date was set, I hired a skip & between my hubby, daughter & me we cleared everything ....it just had to be done & I’m just thankful I never had to tell her - she died 3 weeks after the new owner moved in. I just had to remind myself constantly why I was doing it and I had to as money was running out for her care costs...it’s never an easy thing to do but honestly, it was a weight lifted from me after it was sold as I lived a good distance away from my childhood home.
 

Fiona T

New member
May 31, 2019
1
Hi there
This is my first post so please excuse any naivety.
I have spent the last seven months clearing my Mother's flat. At first I could only do half an hour at a time.I filled up bags and suutcases, so useful for shifting stuff by hand to charity shops without damaging those muscles. I guess we are all of a certain age!
My Mother had a massive stroke last July which took everything away - talking, walking, seeing, life enjoyment.I wanted to clear her life carefully and with the dignity she deserved. But it was not easy even though I only live round the corner. I had very good advice from a work colleague to keep things for six months until you feel ready to part with the memories and possessions.Also when you can't see the carpet in your own home it galvanises you! The most important thing is love, and possessions are just that. Keep the special stuff with good memories and pass on the rest to someone else who will enjoy them. Sounds a bit prissy but it makes a sad job bearable.
Love to those that face this thankless job. Fx
 

nellbelles

Volunteer Host
Nov 6, 2008
8,705
leicester
Hello @Fiona T and welcome to the forum
You are quite right you need to take your time to deal with things like this..
I hope now you have found us you will continue to post
 

Susan11

Registered User
Nov 18, 2018
2,101
Thanks to everyone for their help and advice. Well I signed with the Estate Agents this morning. ( I'm assuming as I have POA I'll be ok to sign the paperwork). I had to grit my teeth but I did sign . We made the Bungalow look lovely and tidy and the photos came out very well. They have someone to look round in the morning. And then when I visited Mum in the afternoon she kept talking about the house and had I been there! Luckily I have photos of her new Great Grandson so she was easily distracted. Thanks to everyone ....it's so good to talk things through with people who have experience and understand.
 

Karen22

Registered User
Nov 3, 2012
88
Thanks to everyone for their helpfully comments. I now have the house tidy so I'm going to put it up for sale soon. At present I go to visit Mum every other weekend spending about £50 on petrol each trip. I take food up with me for breakfast and an evening meal...usually just pasta and cook it in Mum's house. When the house is sold we will have to stay in a hotel and eat out and I think it will cost about £260 a month to visit Mum. That's a lot of money. I have POA for my Mum. Is it reasonable for her to contribute to this cost? She is self funding in her CH. Sounds dreadfull asking this question as i dont want to think of visiting Mum as a cost but in practice it is expensive.
I kept dad's property for two years whilst we slowly cleared it as it was somewhere for us to stay when we visited him in the nursing home - we live 100 miles away. We wondered about staying in a Holiday Inn but we often had to keep dashing up to see dad in hospital. In the end, we had to move dad nearer to us at the end of last year (after two years in his previous Home) and so put his property on the market. It was the wrong thing for dad, I now think, as he died last month. We are awaiting Probate and Conveyancing as have a buyer. I think it was the right thing to keep his property even though it's been empty for over two years now. I hope you make the right decision for your situation.
Karen