Bespoke estate management business eases stress
A new Canterbury venture eases the stress of dealing with family members’ household contents by providing practical support, systems and solutions, and the business received a kickstart during lockdown. Sought’s director Lisa Dooling (pictured), who is based in Pegasus, says lockdown provided time and space to explore her bespoke estate management service on a much […]
A new Canterbury venture eases the stress of dealing with family members’ household contents by providing practical support, systems and solutions, and the business received a kickstart during lockdown.
Sought’s director Lisa Dooling (pictured), who is based in Pegasus, says lockdown provided time and space to explore her bespoke estate management service on a much deeper level.
“I went for lots of long walks and woke up at 2am full of ideas. Having the ability to dig deeper into my business plan and really nail everything down was invaluable.”
The personalised service assists family members to organise household possessions from deceased estates, along with helping elderly relatives downsize their contents to move to a smaller house or into care.
Having moved 14 times in 15 years with six of those moves being international, Lisa has become an expert in creating systems which provide a seamless process when organising household contents.
“I first had the idea for my business when I was living in Hong Kong. A friend’s mother passed away, and she went back to the UK twice – once for the funeral and then a longer stay to pack up the house. She told me how stressful it was and that’s when the seed was planted for Sought.”
Lisa says Sought creates peace of mind for busy family members whose elderly parents live in another area of New Zealand or overseas and helps minimise stress at an emotional time.
“I am an impartial professional who is not emotionally attached to any of the household contents so I can go through a home and catalogue every single item for the family and then they decide what to do with the contents. I treat every item I come across with respect and discretion.
“As we are increasingly living busy lives it is harder to find the time to sort through a household of possessions and sometimes people aren’t emotionally ready to deal with this task when they have just suffered a loss.”
Lisa says it is vital to move at the pace set by the client and sometimes the first step is as simple as cleaning out the fridge and removing medication from the house.
“Everything is up to the client. Some people prefer us to do everything at once, whereas other clients prefer a slower pace and may even wish us to arrange for the possessions to be placed in a storage unit so they can view them when they are ready to do so.”
Sought also offers a cataloguing service for clients who wish to organise their possessions in advance.
Having a photographic record of each item and then having items grouped into logical categories saves time and energy for family members.
“Itemising every item in advance saves so much stress and time later and helps people feel at ease as they know where each item is going. This itemised list can then be lodged with the family’s lawyer for future reference.”
Lisa is also committed to giving back to the local community. She has set up a charity arm of her business called “Big Table” which aims to help youth and the elderly.
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