Tribune Print Share Text

Innovation in the senior housing industry

Lantern Hill part of successful realty, moving program

Created date

November 14th, 2014
Moving to Lantern Hill is even easier with Erickson Realty and Moving Services.

In 2005, the housing market was booming. Retirees in the Detroit area were itching to sell their houses and move to Fox Run, an Erickson Living continuing care retirement community (CCRC) in Novi, Mich. Fox Run had several apartment homes reserved. But they sat vacant.
“We couldn’t figure out why people were waiting months to sell their house and move. They showed sincere desire to move to Fox Run, but they weren’t moving,” says Sharon Baksa, now regional sales director for Erickson Living.
Unique situations hold up house sales
At the time, Baksa worked as a move-in coordinator at Fox Run. She decided to uncover the holdup. She visited people who had reserved an apartment home—in their houses. She listened to her clients stress about downsizing, staging their house, and finding a reputable real estate agent.
They wanted to move to Fox Run and live a worry-free retirement, but they couldn’t sell their house.
“Everyone had a unique issue. One had no family support. The other had vision problems so he couldn’t prepare his house for sale. I worked with each of them one-on-one to overcome these issues, and we sold their houses,” Baksa recalls.
Baksa began working with priority list members—people who have made a refundable $1,000 deposit to secure an apartment home at an Erickson Living community. “We realized [selling your house] is often too overwhelming for people. What we were doing made sense. So we made it a formalized program at Fox Run,” she says.”
A solution is born
Originally called Moving Home, Fox Run’s innovative program is now active at all Erickson Living communities across the country, including Lantern Hill, which will open in New Providence, N.J., next fall. The program is now called Erickson Realty and Moving Services.
A personal moving consultant—a professional experienced in real estate, downsizing, and staging, and who has access to the area’s real estate and moving vendors—works one-on-one with priority list members to take the weight of moving off their shoulders.
It’s never too soon to start
Personal Moving Consultant Jennifer Kohan helps people moving to Lantern Hill plan, project manage, and organize a move from start to finish.
“Even though Lantern Hill won’t open until fall 2015, it’s comforting to know that help is available,” Kohan says. “Once people begin to move in, I will help each and every one of them find a real estate agent and moving company, declutter, downsize, and even plan furniture placement in their new home.”
She says that even though 2015 seems far away, it’s never too soon to start.
“I am currently conducting home visits with priority list members to ease the process of downsizing and selling their house,” she says. “I help them make a plan for the small home improvements that will greatly increase the value of their current house and create a timeline for their move, including how and when to get the house ready, a to-do list, and home listing and moving plans.”
Kohan says her services provide a tremendous relief and assistance to people moving to Lantern Hill—even a year before their move. “Nine times out of ten, people just don’t know where to begin,” Kohan says. “And that’s why my services are free—we want the moving process to be as easy and painless as possible so people can start enjoying the Lantern Hill lifestyle as quickly as possible.”
Start now
“When we open in fall 2015, people will want to move in right away, especially with impending weather of the winter season,” she says.
“It’s important to not wait until your new home is ready to begin preparing your current house for the market. Start now!” says Kohan. “We can spend valuable time preparing your house so it’s in tip-top shape to hit the market.
“Erickson Realty and Moving Services is just another example of how forward thinking Erickson Living is,” Kohan adds. “From the outset, we’ve always been discovering and meeting people’s needs, innovating the senior housing industry across the country.”