No matter where we are on life’s path, we are always faced with - What’s Next?

Selling and buying a home is different as we get older. Do you downsize, upsize, move in with family, age in place, move to a retirement community, rent or buy? While finances are a consideration, of equal importance is health. Look below for more information on why Seniors Real Estate is different.

Are you concerned about your aging parents - What’s Next?

Adult Children of senior parents are often called the sandwich generation; they are coping with aging parents, while also raising their own children. This is no easy position to be in. Adult children need to consider a myriad of circumstances and often struggle to identify available options. Look below for more information if you are an adult child with aging parents.

Are you an EXECUTOR - What’s Next?

If you are a family member who has been appointed as the Executor or Executrix for an estate, do you understand what that role requires of you? Executors need to consider finances, insurance, property, beneficiaries, taxes, law, and the inherent liability of the role. Look below for more information if you are an Executor.

Are you a surviving partner with a property to sell - What’s Next?

Losing a partner after what may be a lifetime together is overwhelming. If you have a property to downsize from and possessions to sort through, the grief process is even more stressful. Look below for more information on downsizing when your life partner is gone.

The kids are gone, you are ready to let go of the family home, but What’s Next?

Whether you are a young senior or an older one, you are in a position to choose what your next chapter will be. What kind of a lifestyle are you looking for? Are you independent? Do you require assistance? Are you active? Are you engaged with your community, or do you want to be? Look below for more information on senior housing options in retirement.

Seniors Real Estate in Durham

Seniors Real Estate Durham


Seniors Real Estate Durham fir Adult children of Seniors

Adult children of seniors

Seniors Real Estate Executor


Seniors Real estate for surviving partners

Surviving Partner

Seniors Real estate options



Selling and buying a home is different as we get older. Do you downsize, upsize, move in with family, age in place, move to a retirement community, rent, or buy? While finances are a consideration, of equal importance is health. The truth is there is nothing easy about seniors’ real estate.

We spend our younger years building a life – career and family, and then, somehow, we aged, the kids left home, our needs changed, and we find ourselves faced with unique challenges while still wanting to hold on to the past.

My name is Donna Baglieri, and I am a Lifestyle55+ MASTER REALTOR®. My education and experience have provided me with a unique set of skills to help older adults with their specific circumstances and needs related to seniors’ real estate and downsizing.

A realtor is often called in to work with an older adult or couple in one of two situations, which we refer to as: 1. Choice or 2. Circumstance.

In any situation (real estate transactions included) where You can make a choice, you will most likely be presented with the most options available to you and those options usually lead to a decisive improvement in your quality of life, lifestyle, attaining your life long dreams, your family situation…the list goes on, but you get the idea.

In a situation where you are faced with a challenge or have not made a choice earlier in the process (hence have left decision making to occur when there is a circumstance that requires it), you may be limited in your options. Unfortunately, this is when we become involved with most seniors; when they have to make decisions based on the circumstances, they find themselves in, often unexpectedly. These circumstances may be related to health, finances, life changes, resistance, fear, or family dynamics.

For more insight, I’m just a call away!


When a senior decides to sell their home, through either choice or circumstance, they may be faced with a mix of emotions. For some – those emotions can be stressful and overwhelming which may limit their ability to take action. Hiring an agent who is aware of how you may be feeling is often the key to easing you into taking your first step.

I work with senior clients and prepare them for both the transaction of real estate AND the transitional/emotional aspect of selling their home. The goal may be to have it SOLD but the path to get there requires a guiding hand beyond just a real estate professional.

As my clients deal with emotional attachment, health issues, family concerns, personal items, changing or selling furniture, changing their lifestyle, photographers in their home, packing, moving, unpacking, decluttering, lawyers, making phone calls, appointments for visiting REALTORS®, sale contracts, closing procedures and finances, I am there, by their side to make things easier. Regardless of how complicated a situation is, serving my senior clients by helping them through the mine field is what I love to do. Before you get all stressed out, let’s jump on a call and talk.

When it comes to seniors’ real estate, the big ‘buzz’ word is downsizing – for some, this means selling a larger home with unused spaces for something smaller. While this is often seen as the definition of downsizing, the decision to do so is often a monumental one and perhaps the greatest challenge in the process.

For those who are considering a smaller, more manageable property and are independent, the options are plentiful and may include: a smaller home, townhome, condo, bungalow, seniors building, life lease, lifestyle community, home sharing, senior co-housing, tiny home, or moving in with family. Within each of these options, there are the categories of Essential and Luxury. The options in each category are varied and cater to affordability, needs, and lifestyle choices.

For those who require assistance, the downsizing options may include: downsizing (as above) with home supports, or a move to a retirement home, assisted living, supportive housing, memory care home, or Long-Term Care. Whatever the option, whatever your situation, I am just a call away!

For seniors considering a transition in their living arrangements, the concept of “upsizing” takes on a new and exciting dimension. Upsizing in senior real estate refers to moving to a larger or more accommodating living space, often driven by both choice and circumstances and includes the desire for more comfort, or the need to accommodate an extended family.

Upsizing is not referred to as much as Downsizing in the senior’s real estate market, but it is a very viable option. If creating a multigenerational living situation by moving in with family is the choice and neither has a large enough home, combining resources, selling two properties and buying a larger one, is often the solution. Or when the kids move out and the grandkids start coming around, the old family home may not be suitable or located near the grandkids. Given today’s housing prices, the ability for seniors to sell and upsize to the type of lifestyle or location better suited for them, is a potential reality.

It may also be something as simple as selling your city home and ‘upsizing’ to a beachfront or all-season ‘cottage home’ that has the potential to become a vacation property that everyone in the family can enjoy. Upsizing is different for everyone, and it may need a conversation.

Interested in knowing more? I’m just a call away!

As older adults begin to consider Downsizing, Lifestyle Options, and Quality of Life, many seniors and their children or caregivers will start to contemplate the idea of a Retirement Home. Some are completely against it and simply want to age in place, while others recognize the potential benefits. When considering care options, it’s crucial to engage in a conversation and gain an understanding of what these choices entail, including their costs compared to aging in place.

Retirement home options cover both Independent and Assisted Living. Independent Living offers safety while allowing residents to live independently without care or assistance. Residents and guests are free to come and go as they please. Some retirement homes offer high-end amenities, while others are more ‘no-frills,’ and some fall in between these two extremes.

Assisted Living is a bit more complex. While safety is a primary feature, there is a component of care attached. The question is the level of care that is required.

Long-Term Care is not the same as retirement homes or assisted living and usually offers the highest level of care with government oversight and set pricing. I will share some additional information on this in the Senior Housing section of this website, but these are the basic categories. Pricing varies across the country as well as within Durham. It is not a straightforward option and often requires a professional to guide you. I am happy to discuss your options.

The idea of Lifestyle as it relates to seniors’ real estate has to do with what you want from your living environment. We often think of lifestyle as the term relates to the ‘rich and famous’, but it should be thought of in terms of having a quality of life that you want or the best that you can have. For some, having a luxury lifestyle meets this definition, while for others it is simply means having a better quality of life.

As we age, we need to consider our abilities, affordability, care, socialization, family, health, access to services, transportation and more. All this plays as an important part in the conversation of what you want your life to look like; do you want to maintain your lifestyle or improve it?

What will your future look like? What kind of Lifestyle do you want? I’m ready to have that conversation – call me.

Seniors real estate Durham/Oshawa/Ajax


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        Adult children of seniors often find themselves in a difficult position. They are still children of their parents but may feel the need to take on a parental role, increasingly so, while also having their own families to care for. This balancing act becomes even more demanding when they are juggling work, personal relationships, and other responsibilities. This scenario is becoming increasingly common as our population ages. The stress of this situation can be exacerbated when an adult child lives far away from their parents, is an only child, or is in conflict with their siblings. Even when there is harmony among siblings, they can be faced with parents who do not share their concerns and refuse to be ‘parented’ by their children. Clearly, this is not an easy role and is often fraught with issues.

        As a seniors’ realtor, I am trained to handle many of the issues adult children deal with. I have many adult children clients that feel challenged in managing their senior parent’s needs. And although they have felt overwhelmed, they found that working with me offered them a sense of clarity and support to move things forward in the conversation with their parents.

        I can assist you with having the ‘talk’ with your parents, be a neutral third party with siblings, and connect you with resources to help relieve some of your burden. If any of this resonates with you, call me, and let’s talk.

        Senior Real Estate for Adult Children of Seniors


        Navigating the complex landscape of real estate transactions can be a daunting task for anyone, but it becomes particularly challenging when a person is faced with additional considerations and unique circumstances. In situations where a person is thrown into the role of an executor or executrix and there is a property to sell, this can be exceedingly stress inducing especially if one has never done this job before. These trusted individuals play a pivotal role in ensuring seamless real estate transactions for seniors, ensuring their interests are safeguarded and their wishes are fulfilled.

        It becomes even more complicated if there is no will and thus no appointed Executor. At some point a person’s estate (real estate property) will need to be transferred to the family or sold. Complications arise when a person passes on and does not leave instructions and permission (via a will and Executor) on what to do with the property. Typically, the family will need to agree to an Estate Trustee and submit to the courts via Probate. If a property needs to be sold and is held up in Probate, having an agent like me is an asset as the trustee prepares and progresses through the legal requirements.

        While a will and Executor are required upon the death of an individual, a Power of Attorney is used when one is still alive yet unable to make decisions for themselves either temporarily or permanently. A will and a power of attorney are not the same thing and are used at different times. Everyone should have both, regardless of their age or health status because anything can happen to anyone at any time.

        A power of attorney can be used in situations when a person is out of the country, experiencing temporary cognitive impairment or delirium due to an illness, is in a coma, or has been diagnosed with cognitive impairment, or as not having capacity to make certain decisions for themselves. There are two legally separate powers of attorney – there is one for health care decisions, and separate one for financial decisions. The same person does not need to hold both powers of attorney for you.

        If you are a Power of Attorney or Executor for someone and need to sell property, call me to discuss your options. If you are an Executor and need to sell a property, I can prepare the listing under probate. As a Lifesyle55+ AFFILIATE MASTER REALTOR®, I will be able to guide you and access resources to simplify the process.

        Seniors Real Estate for Surviving Seniors


        Life’s journey takes us through countless experiences, and for seniors, the path often includes the challenge of navigating life as a surviving partner. The loss of a spouse or partner is an emotionally and mentally daunting experience, while also having to take on the day-to-day responsibilities that the partner took care of.

        Surviving the passing of a life partner undoubtedly marks a significant life transition. Challenges are abundant, especially in the first year, and often seem overwhelming. Having or building a support system of friends, family and services can offer tremendous help as you work your way through your new status.

        †Women aged 75-79 are 3.5 times more likely to be widowed than their men counterparts and that number increases as they age. Widowhood is not easy for either gender, and as it relates to seniors’ real estate, since many seniors in this position are women who may never have been involved in the financial side of their lives prior, there is often a need for specialized guidance from the professional services they engage with. Professionals who focus on working with seniors understand the challenges an elder widow or widower face and can assist with that knowledge in mind.

        A seniors’ REALTOR® recognizes that life changes when you lose a spouse, and often leads you on a different path that you may never have needed or wanted to consider before. When we are called on to help with housing options in light of potential or future care needs, we begin to introduce the ideas of downsizing, multigeneration living, retirement homes and even aging in place with care. If you or your parent find yourselves in facing these tough conversations and struggle with where to begin, I can assist you and am just a call away.


        Regardless of your age, if you are an older adult who has decided to move to simplify your life, change how you live, achieve goals, or needs to move for health reasons, you can and should choose what your next chapter will be.

        • What kind of a lifestyle are you looking for?
        • Often this starts with simply knowing the options so you can make an informed decision.
        • Do you want to live independently?
        • There are condos for seniors, with added amenities to standard condos, tiny homes, townhouses with elevators, adult lifestyle communities, co-housing, and shared housing communities.
        • Do you want a vacation home?
        • Do you want to relocate to be close to family?
        • Do you need care?
        • Are you concerned that you may need some care soon?
        • Do you want to move to a residence that will provide a continuum of care as you age? If so, do you know the difference between a retirement home (which may have multiple levels of care from independent to heavy care, under the same roof) and long-term care (which is for people that require substantial care and usually cannot afford retirement living) and the array of options in between?
        • Do you know how to find options for care?

        If you have not thought about any of this, or how to make it part of your retirement plan, call me, I can help you decipher the possibilities and figure out what fits within your needs, desires and finances so your lifestyle transition can be as stress free as possible.

        If you want to start looking at options, I am a sponsored resource on the where you can find a wide range of housing options for seniors in the Durham region.

        Transitioning Lifestyles

        Transitioning Lifestyles

        As we age, our lifestyles and needs will evolve, prompting various shifts in our living arrangements. One of the most crucial transitions seniors often contemplate is how to adjust their housing to better align with their current and future requirements. Whether you’re looking to downsize, live closer to family, acquire a vacation home, or move into specialized communities or facilities, each option entails a significant lifestyle change, and I am here to guide you!

        Seniors’ real estate choices should be well-calculated to ensure they offer comfort, accessibility, convenience and socialization. Transitioning your lifestyle is not just a matter of moving houses; it’s a transformative experience aimed at enhancing your quality of life.

        Your choice in a seniors’ real estate professional can influence your happiness, well-being, and financial stability as you navigate your senior years. With careful planning, your next move (potentially your most important move to date) can offer a fulfilling lifestyle transition filled with new opportunities. I am just a call away!

        Downsizing to a Smaller Home

        Relocating Near Family

        Independent Living Communities

        Adult Lifestyle Communities

        Assisted Living Options

        Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs)

        Long-Term Care Facilities

        Co-Housing and Shared Living Arrangements

        Renting vs. Owning

        Adaptable and Universal Design Homes

        Tiny House Living

        Vacation Homes

        Reverse Mortgages

        Financial Planning for Senior Housing


        Hi, I am Donna Baglieri, a Lifestyle 55+ Master REALTOR®, with Belvista Realty Inc. My focus is to help Seniors 55+ and their adult children transition in the Whitby/Oshawa area of Durham Region. I am the Broker/owner of my Brokerage and I can proudly say I have served my clients for close to 35 years now.

        Should you have any Senior referrals in Durham region, I would be happy to work with you.

        Accountability Promise

        As a Lifestyle 55+ Master REALTOR®, I understand that moving Seniors can be very stressful and emotional for both the Senior and their families. The aging senior dealing with the fact that they may have to leave their beloved longtime home and the adult children trying to navigate through the process.

        I would like to offer an “Accountability Promise” so that together we can reach the best decision possible.

        • I promise to take the time to hear your wants and needs by listening, asking questions, help find solutions and by treating you with the utmost respect.
        • I promise to work hard for you, give 100% effort, and do my very best to help you meet your goals with guidance, professionalism and compassion.
        • I promise to respect your wishes and your values and to understand and address any fears or concerns you may have.
        • I promise to communicate with you frequently, and in a manner you are most comfortable with, so that you are not left in uncertainty.
        • I promise that I will treat you like you are my “one and only” client and will always make myself available in a timely fashion to answer any questions or concerns you have.
        • I promise to help in the best ways possible to reduce any stress that you may feel and be ready to explain as many times as needed for you to be comfortable with how the transition process works so that there are no surprises.
        • Most importantly… I promise to be accountable to you!
        My Personal Story

        “If there is one thing I have learned is that in an instant your life can change forever. Most often, its “circumstances” not “choices” that force us to make very difficult decisions.

        As adult children, we know that our parents will not be with us forever, and even though we see them age over the years, it’s a reality that is very difficult to accept.

        Hi, my name is Donna Baglieri, I am a lifestyle 55+ master realtor with Belvista Realty Inc, serving Durham region. Helping seniors and their families is something that is very near and dear to my heart.

        Through my own personal experience with my aging parents, I understand how in an instant circumstances can change everything. An accident, a brain injury leading to the onset of dementia, the road to care and support was a long and difficult one. My parents lives were never the same.

        After my mother’s passing, my father was alone and dealing with his own health issues, which left our family all thinking the same thing “now what??”

        Every circumstance is unique and very different, but what is usually the same is the fear of “what’s next” .

        For both the adult child trying to navigate through our aging parents challenges and health issues, or a senior facing life changing decisions, transitions can be overwhelming and stressful for all.

        The hard work that is involved when transitioning is clear, however, I can say that I have also had such wonderful experiences with active seniors 55+ looking for a certain lifestyle change to reflect the chapter in their lives. Whether it’s considering independent retirement home living, or downsizing to a smaller home or condo, I have had the pleasure to help with many different housing options.

        Helping seniors 55+ and their families is very important to me and adding it as a special part of my real estate business, in some way, helps me honor my mother’s memory and at the same time also guides me to reflect, understand and appreciate my father on a much deeper level.

        Having the specialized training and affiliation with lifestyle 55+ and senior care access gives me the tools to serve my senior clients with care and compassion.

        If you are struggling with “what’s next” or looking for a lifestyle change, I am here to help! Call me today”.


        As a Lifestyle 55+ Master REALTOR® with Belvista Realty Inc. my focus is to help Seniors 55+ and their Adult children in Whitby/Oshawa (Durham Region), find housing solutions, meet their goals, and make the best decision for their unique circumstances with as little stress as possible to help with both Life and Housing Transitions.

        Having the specialized training and affiliation with Lifestyle 55+ and SeniorCareAccess, a network of professionals dedicated to the needs of the aging adult, combined with 35 years of experience, my “hands on” approach, continuing education and self improvement, I am sensitive to my aging clients needs and committed to their satisfaction.

        Understanding, through my own personal experience with aging parents, the challenges and hard work that is involved, something that is near and dear to my heart, my goal is to go beyond the role of a realtor and serving my senior clients and their families with the utmost care, respect and compassion.

        My Lifestyle55+ MASTER training

        Like any high-level profession, knowledge, education and training are key components to delivering quality services. As the Broker/Owner of Belvista Realty Brokerage in Durham – it is imperative that I maintain all my real estate credentials and follow all regulations. However, I have also found that educating myself on what you don’t learn in standard real estate courses like how to deliver real estate services to our aging population is the key to servicing my clients better than any competing REALTOR® without these credentials. I have obtained specialized training through both the Lifestyle55+ Affiliate and the advanced Lifestyle55+ MASTER programs.

        These programs begin with the idea that working with seniors is a transitional experience and not a transactional one. The courses covered dozens of topics but in particular the need to understand the importance of the emotional decision both seniors and their children face. The program is delivered by the Lifestyle55+ Network Inc. organization who also manages the platform. I am proud to be sponsor for Seniors Real Estate Oshawa and Seniors Real Estate Whitby on their website.

        By qualifying as a Lifestyle55+ MASTER, I am one of less than 40 professionals across Canada that have completed this extensive program. It’s important to me and it should be important to you too! Donna Baglieri – Lifestyle55+ MASTER – more than just a REALTOR®


        Hillary Lorenz

        When I first started working with Donna Baglieri, I had no idea what an asset she would be to helping with buying our house. Once I started working with Donna, she is the first and only person I contact for any real estate plans, questions, or needs. Especially when my Mother was ready to downsize from her lifetime home. Donna was beyond fantastic. She was understanding, patient, and put my Mom at such ease. When my mom was unsure, she was there with answers. When she was nervous and wasn’t sure she was ready, Donna was not pushy and willing to work with my Mom at her pace. When her home sold, Donna was patient explaining everything and making sure she got the best deal and felt comfortable with the process.

        I would not hesitate to recommend Donna and the Belvista Realty team but definitely including helping elderly family and friends with their real estate needs. My mind was completely at ease knowing Donna was in my Mom’ corner.

        Hillary Lorenz

        Cal Drummond

        I have known Donna at Belvista Realty for over two decades. She has been a trusted source for us in Real Estate. When I needed to relocate my elderly mother-in-law, she was very helpful. Donna took the time to understand her needs and accommodated her specific details around accessibility. Donna’s attention to detail made the transition a smooth and worry-free journey. She is a true professional that displays empathy and care for the people she works with. Her years of Real Estate industry knowledge is second to none, not to mention her determination to help us find the ideal home for my mother-in-law.

        The entire experience has been very positive. I would highly recommend Donna and the Belvista Realty team for anyone who is looking to relocate their elderly loved ones.

        Best Regards,
        Cal Drummond

        Cal Drummond


        Kieran Heaney

        Within a few years, my Mom had lost both her daughter and her husband. Shortly thereafter, it was becoming apparent that Mom wasn’t capable of independent living. My wife and I agreed that it would be best for her to live with us. We called Donna to inquire about selling Mom’s condo. This was a very difficult time for Mom. She was closing another chapter of her life. There were 20+ years of memories in that condo. Through it all, Donna was very understanding. There was never any pressure to sell. The more Mom and Donna spoke, the more Mom became comfortable with selling. I don’t believe Mom would have sold her condo if it were not for Donna’s calm demeanor and patience.

        Thank you Donna

        Kieran Heaney

        Vidya Shanker

        I am honoured to write this letter of testimonial for Donna Baglieri who was my realtor in our recent purchase of a condominium. Earlier this year we wanted to purchase a condominium for my elderly in-laws. It was a big decision for them to move out of their house where they have been living for more than twenty years and downsize to a condominium for safety reasons. Hence I was looking for a good real estate agent who understood the needs and difficulties of senior citizens. I contacted a few agents but none of them impressed me. One day I stumbled upon a condominium on the MLS website and Donna was listed as one of the agents. I casually called her to inquire about that condo unit. Unfortunately that unit was already sold conditionally. However, the friendly manner in which Donna talked to me over the phone impressed me so much that I discussed all the details about our property purchasing plan with her. After a friendly lengthy conversation, she promised to find us a condo at an affordable price while meeting all our needs. Donna’s compassion, insightfulness, positive energy, and professionalism was truly impressive.

        Shortly after, we met Donna to go and see a few condos. It was a remarkable and memorable meeting. Her personality, and positive manners were so impressive that we immediately selected her as our agent. From the moment she took over the responsibility, she was sincerely dedicated without being too pushy. Every day she was in touch with me updating me on any new listings, giving me details about other purchases around the neighborhood and informing me right away if we had any questions or doubts. Very quickly we found a condo unit that we were satisfied with and purchased it in a very smooth, stress free manner. Donna was always very prompt and accurate with all the closing procedures and even found us a very good lawyer.

        Donna Baglieri is a highly commendable realtor who is reliable, trustworthy, hardworking and sincere. Her remarkable professionalism, extreme kindness and unlimited patience is truly impressive. We feel extremely fortunate to have met Donna and will definitely keep her as our family realtor for all our future needs. Thank you.

        Vidya Shanker

        Sonia Thomas

        Donna has been my trusted Real Estate Agent for over 20 years, so when I retired and prepared to downsized to a condo of course I called her.

        Donna was and has always been compassionate, understanding and took the time to really understand my new housing needs. She was patient and always responded quickly and so diligently to my calls and requests. She effortlessly had my home staged and listed and my house was sold within days while I was away on my retirement trip. Donna then worked so closely with me to find the perfect condo that I feel safe and happy in.

        I can only imagine her advanced skills now having the technical knowledge and expertise focused on serving the 55+ community. Congratulations on your designation Donna!!!!

        Sonia Thomas


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