Transition of the Week: Sister Sister in Stoughton
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Transition of the Week: Sister Sister in Stoughton

No matter how prepared you are for the passing of a loved you are never truly ready when it happens. Recently, I was contacted by two young women, sisters, whose mother had passed recently to breast cancer. Their case stood out to me due to their age as I am more accustomed to working with clients of an older generation.

Their mother was first diagnosed with breast cancer a few years ago, however, with time and attention was able to beat it. Unfortunately, this time her cancer had progressed into her lungs causing her untimely death just three weeks after her second diagnosis. This devastated the young sisters as it put them in a difficult situation to handle all of their mother’s affairs.

With such a devastating and unexpected passing, their mother did not leave a will which caused the two young sisters to fight over their personal wants and needs as well as their own perceptions of what their mother would have wanted.

In particular, the young sisters were at odds on how to progress forward with their mother’s home. The older of the two sisters, 25, had moved out a while ago and was completely independent of her family. The younger sister, 21, was living in the home caring for their mom when she passed. The younger sister had a much greater attachment to the house which caused a substantial rift between the two sisters. The tension came to a head when the eldest sister suggested selling the home however the younger sister wanted to keep the home and continue paying the mortgage independently.

The eldest sister reached out to LifeCycle to assist in her families unique life transition. We appraised the home to be worth roughly $115K as it presently stood unrenovated. However, with our transition assessment and support, the home would be worth $220K fully renovated. The home itself needed serious infrastructure work including plumbing, electrical, and roof repairs. In addition to these needs, the home needed some updating to their bathrooms and kitchen.

I visited the two sisters for two weeks, providing transition options that best suited their unique circumstance. In the end, we offered to purchase the house for $140K with the agreement that we will help relocate the younger sister into a new apartment and support her in all her moving needs. Unfortunately, the younger sister wasn’t quite ready to move on from the home and the older sister withdrew from fighting her about it.

Here at LifeCycle, we understand that every transition is unique. This was a particularly emotional transition where two sisters had very different needs and wants. Many clients reach out to us the day their family member passes, in an attempt to start planning while mending their emotions. In this situation, these young women reached out 6 months after their mother passed but in the end, the younger sister wasn’t ready to part with her childhood home and we completely understood.

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