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Your checklist for moving into a care home

Advice on moving in

Moving into a care home can be a daunting prospect, but if you or your loved one are thinking that now is the right time to make the move, you might be wondering what you can expect.

Find out more about the process of moving in and prepare for every step of the journey with our checklist. 

How do you prepare someone to go into a care home? 

1. Making the decision 

Care is a sensitive subject and speaking to your loved one about moving into a care home can be tough. Imight feel scary or overwhelming for themor they may have out-dated assumptions about care homes.  

When you bring up the conversation, make sure you listen to their fears but focus on the benefits of living in a care home, like the opportunities for socialising, activities and outings, and the freedom from worrying about running a house. 

You can read more about having these conversations in our free guide, A helping hand. 

2. Choosing the right home 

Finding the right care home for your loved one is key to ensuring they receive the best possible care and settle in well. There is much to consider, from your loved one’s care needs to the home’s location to the atmosphere and feel of the home. Download our checklist and you’ll cover all the bases. 

Download our care home checklist

3. Showing your loved one around 

Once you’ve found the best home, take a trip to the home and show your loved one around. They might have preconception of what a care home is and be surprised to find a hotel-like environment, complete with unique offerings like salons, cinemas and even pubs.  

Check if the home offers a 'resident for a day' programme so your loved one can experience daily life in the care home, including mealsactivities and getting to know the other residents. Alternatively, a short respite stay may get them familiar with the idea of living in a home. 

While visiting, make a note of what the home provides in each room and what you’ll need to bring. 

4. Deciding what to bring 

As well as clothing (enough for two weeks), toiletries and personal items, bringing photos and other sentimental belongings will help your loved one settle into the home. Our homes are happy to paint the room their favourite colour, hang pictures and put up shelves so your loved one can bring their personality to their room.


5. On move-in day 

Team members will pop in to introduce themselves and will help your loved one settle in and meet other residents in the home. It’s important to talk to them and let them know any preferences around daily routines.  

Our care and lifestyle teams will start getting to know your loved one immediately, and they will help them get involved with activities and support them with any new interests they’d like to pursue. 

Read more about moving in. 

6. Changing your address 

Don’t forget to let the relevant people and organisations on your mailing list know about your loved one’s new address. Make sure their GPs, local council, banks, utility companies and any friends and family know where they can contact them. 

Questions to ask the care home 

Wherever you are in the process of selecting a care home, there are important questions that you’ll want to ask the team. 

  • Does the home provide the right type of care? 
  • Can the home continue to support your loved one if their needs change? 
  • How often are care needs reviewed? 
  • Are residents involved in decisions about their care? 
  • What is the resident to team member ratio? 
  • Can residents bring their own furniture? 
  • Can residents choose their room? 
  • Can residents choose their own routine? 
  • Do the bedrooms have en-suite facilities? 
  • Do bedrooms have a nurse call system? 
  • Are there lifts in the home? 
  • Can residents eat when they want to? 
  • Are residents offered a choice of meals? 
  • Are special diets catered for? 
  • Does the chef consult with residents to discuss meal preferences? 
  • Are snacks and drinks available all the time? 
  • Are residents encouraged to continue with hobbies and interests? 
  • Is there an activities programme? 
  • Are there regular outings and trips? 
  • Are one-to-one activities available? 
  • Are residents consulted on what activities they’d like? 
  • What are the gardens like? 
  • Are residents involved in gardening? 
  • Is there good wheelchair access? 
  • Are there any restrictions on visitors? 
  • What is included in the price? 

The benefits of moving into a Care UK care home 

At Care UK, we believe that moving into a care home offers the start of a positive new chapter to your loved one’s life. Many people find that receiving round-the-clock, tailored care gives them a whole new lease of life. For people living with dementia, there are even more benefits to living in a care home.

In the safety and comfort of a care home, they can make new friends, enjoy activities and even try new hobbies or reignite old passions. 

Making the move into a care home also impacts family and friends. Many who take on a caring role feel they are free to go back to being their loved one’s child, spouse or friendWith the care home taking on the practical care of your loved one, you are free to visit and enjoy quality time together again.

If a care home sounds like the right move for you or your loved one, find your local care home to discover the care and lifestyle they can provide.