Rob's Home and Garden Blog

Two tips for those who will be helping a visually impaired person who needs to move house

by Martha Reed

If a visually impaired friend of yours needs some help with moving to their new home, here are some things you can do to make this easier for them.

Find a creative way to help them to identify what's in their packed boxes

In the last couple of days in their old home, after they have packed their belongings into boxes, your friend may realise that they need a couple of the items that are in these containers. Identifying which of the packed boxes contains these items will be very difficult for them. They will, of course, also need to be able to identify what's in the boxes when they get to their new home and need to unpack.

As such, you might want to figure out a way to make this easier for them. One way you could do this is to buy a collection of scrap fabric in an array of textures (such as faux fur, satin, cotton, sequin, etc.), associate each texture with a specific category of your friend's belongings, then stick these onto the sides of the boxes so that they can identify what's in a particular box by touching this fabric. For example, you could stick the faux fur patches of fabric onto any boxes that contain books, the satin ones onto any boxes of clothing and the sequin ones onto boxes of soft furnishings. This will mean your friend will not only be able to retrieve any packed items that they need before their move, but it will also mean that on the day itself, they won't have to ask you or the removalists for help each time they want to find out what is in a certain box.

Try to be a middleman between your friend and the employees of the house removals service

Even if your friend is unable to do much of the work on moving day because of their disability, they will still probably want to be present whilst the house removals team are taking their things out of their old home for them. They may find it helpful if you served as a middleman in this situation.

For example, if a member of the removals team needs to ask how your friend if they are happy for them to stack certain items on top of one another inside the truck, you can quickly describe these items to your friend in a way that will allow them to immediately recognise which ones you're talking about (i.e. 'the armchair you take your afternoon naps on' or 'your fluffy bedroom rug'). This will mean that the removals team will not have to describe items like this in painstaking detail, and it will also enable them to load up your friend's belongings in the exact way that your friend wants them to.

Additionally, you might want to watch over your friend and ensure that they do not accidentally put themselves in harm's way by, for example, not moving out of the way when a removalist, whose view is blocked by the item they're carrying, is walking towards them.

To learn more about how you can help, contact the house removals team and ask how they want things handled.