Many upsides to downsizing

By Carol Sorgen
Posted on January 23, 2017

Roberta and Ira Greenstein had never lived in a city. So when they started to consider downsizing four years ago, they thought downtown Baltimore might be just the spot for them. In short order they sold their four-bedroom Columbia home, purchased a two-bedroom condominium in Fells Point, and have wholeheartedly embraced this new stage in their lives. While many people have intense... READ MORE

Use a gentle touch in helping hoarders

By Joan Van De Moortel
Posted on January 20, 2017

The moment the elevator doors opened, the stench was overpowering. Eyes watered, nostrils burned, fight or flight impulses activated.We hadn’t even gotten into the apartment yet — the trash was crammed so tightly floor to ceiling it was nearly impossible to open the door. Inside: Narrow paths from room to room. Boxes filled with junk mail, old newspapers, invitations to... READ MORE

Residents who look beyond themselves

By Robert Friedman
Posted on January 19, 2017

Today, so many retirement communities take such good care of their residents, you might think they were waited on hand and foot, as my mother liked to say.Restaurant-style dining, a plethora of clubs and activities, pools, golf courses and state-of-the-art exercise facilities, movie theaters, beauty salons — you name it, and there are places that offer it.But a seldom-heralded benefit ... READ MORE

Convert a spare room into a dream closet

By Melissa Rayworth
Posted on January 03, 2017

Longing for a bigger closet?Rooms in your home don’t have to be used the way they were originally intended. Get creative and convert a small room into the ultimate walk-in closet, says Egypt Sherrod, host of HGTV’s “Flipping Virgins” and “Property Virgins.”Giving up a room can be a big decision. The trick is doing it on a minimal budget and retaining the... READ MORE

A variety of affordable housing options

By Carol Sorgen
Posted on December 30, 2016

Dorothy Tolliver has been living at Weinberg House for almost 11 years and couldn’t be happier. The former government employee, who is now 80, had been living in another senior residence in downtown Baltimore but wanted to be closer to her family. She now enjoys her one-bedroom apartment and the convenience of the Pikesville neighborhood. “I’m right across the street from the Giant ... READ MORE

Another option: find a caregiver online

By Rebekah Alcalde
Posted on October 21, 2016

Thanks to the internet, finding a caregiver privately is easier than ever. Instead of wading through the local paper or taking out advertisements, some websites now offer online services that match clients with caregivers.Online services are similar to an agency’s, but are generally less expensive. Private caregiving is not covered by Medicare, however, and sometimes not by long-term... READ MORE

Many sources provide home care workers

By Beacon
Posted on October 20, 2016

Home care providers can come from a variety of sources — whether agencies, direct hire, or through online services. Here are descriptions of the differences between various types of home care agencies.Home health agenciesThe term home health agency often indicates that a home care provider is Medicare-certified. A Medicare-certified agency has met federal minimum requirements for... READ MORE

Caregivers bring help and peace of mind

By Rebekah Alcalde
Posted on October 19, 2016

At 95, Jose Vargas is still very active — despite the dialysis he receives three times a week and his wobbly gait.“I am not an invalid,” he insists. In fact, on a good day, he goes for walks and swims for exercise.Vargas credits his certified nursing assistant (CNA), Yvonne Oldacre, with his continued activity. He found her through the home care agency ElderCaring, where... READ MORE

How to find and hire a reliable handyman

By Jim Miller
Posted on October 18, 2016

Dear Savvy Senior:What’s the best way to find a good handyman or tradesman to do some work around the house? I’ve had some bad luck lately with unprofessional workers who do shoddy work and charge too much.— Frustrated SeniorDear Frustrated:Hiring a good home repair handyman can be a bit of a crapshoot. How do you find someone who will return your calls, show up on time,... READ MORE

Don’t wait to check out assisted living

By Christopher J. Gearon
Posted on October 17, 2016

Late last summer, William Senior, of Reston, Va., put down $2,000 to get on a waitlist for a two-bedroom assisted-living apartment at a nearby continuing care retirement community for himself and his wife.His children had urged their parents to move into assisted living, a step between independent living and nursing-home care, ever since their 85-year-old mother, Lorraine, began requiring... READ MORE