Louisville native Barbara Huttsell Morris is president and founder or Smooth Transitions LLC in St. Matthews, (502) 897-9332, firstname.lastname@example.org or www.movingforseniors.com.
Growing need: “I started Smooth Transitions in 1995 after helping with the estate dispersal of a family friend. When my mother-in-law decided to move to a retirement community I put that experience to good use to help with her transition. I realized there was a growing need for helping seniors when they were ready to downsize. Adult children may live out of town, have demanding work schedules and responsibilities for their own children. Having an outside professional coordinate the process can help with what can be an overwhelming experience.”
Services: “My original business focus was helping seniors move. This includes sorting, packing, coordinating the move, unpacking, and arranging the living space in their new home. We take care of getting items shipped to family members, arrange for selling, donating or disposing of unwanted items. Each job is different as the needs are different. We also help with estate dispersal, working with families, private bankers and attorneys.”
Licensees: “Now I primarily train others from across the country to start their own senior move management businesses. Some become Smooth Transitions licensees while others open senior move management companies under their own business names. There are now 55 licensees in twenty-six states, three in Canada and one in New Zealand. I’ve trained another 65 individuals who are using different business names. Training covers all the ‘ins and outs’ of this service, from the business side to the operational, resources and marketing.”
Relationships: “It isn’t unusual to move someone more than once as their individual needs change. I moved one client six times. When he died, his out of town family requested I scatter his ashes at Churchill Downs and I was honored to grant their wish. The relationships formed with the seniors and subsequently their adult children have been lasting. I still get emails and holiday cards from families I moved years ago, long after the senior has passed. I become an extended part of their family and they fill me in on what they and the various family members are doing.”