Innovation in the senior housing industry
Cedar Crest part of successful realty, moving programBy Julia Collins
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 community in Novi, Mich. But while Fox Run had several apartment homes reserved, many sat vacant.
“We couldn’t figure out why people were waiting months to sell their house and move. They showed a sincere desire to move to Fox Run, but they weren’t moving,” says Sharon Baksa, a regional sales director for Erickson Living.
Unique situations hold up house sales
Baksa decided to find out what the holdup was. She visited priority list members—those 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.
People wanted to move and start living a worry-free retirement, but they couldn’t sell their house.
“Everyone had a unique issue,” Baksa recalls. “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 to overcome these issues, and we sold their houses.”
Baksa began working with more priority list members. “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, Erickson Realty and Moving Services was born. The innovative program, now active at all 16 Erickson Living communities across the country, including Cedar Crest, in Pompton Plains, N.J., provides personal support to priority list members—people who have made a refundable $1,000 deposit to secure an apartment home at an Erickson Living community.
A personal moving consultant—a professional experienced in real estate, downsizing, and staging, and well-versed in the area’s real estate and moving vendors—works with priority list members to take the weight of moving off their shoulders.
At Cedar Crest, Erickson Realty and Moving Services has worked with hundreds of people to successfully sell their house more quickly than those who did not use her services. For example, mid-year statistics show that their clients averaged 20 days on market compared to an average of 89 days in Morris County, 115 days in Passaic County, 111 in Bergen County, and 66 days in Essex County.
Baksa says, “Erickson Realty and Moving Services is just another example of how forward-thinking Erickson Living is. From the outset, we’ve always been discovering and meeting people’s needs, innovating the senior housing industry across the country.”