Everyone knows that moving to a new home or apartment is an aggravating, tedious chore, but once you have a family, moving can become a truly daunting task. Obviously, there is a lot to be excited about with any move – more space in a new neighborhood, a new job or just a change of scenery. For young children, however, it can be a serious disruption.
Luckily, most children will adapt to change quickly if parents can help kids cope with emotions and the changes that any move will bring. Just remember that helping a child deal with the physical and emotional challenges of a move starts well before moving day.
Before the Move
- Once you have decided on a move, it’s important to include your children in your plans and tell them exactly why you’re moving. Don’t wait for them to overhear conversation that might get them worried, make sure they understand where the family is moving and why.
- Be excited! It’s easy to be stressed or anxious before a move, especially if it’s to a new city or for a new job, but your kids will definitely notice those emotions. Stay positive and make sure to talk through any fears your kids may have. Mark the calendar with your moving date and keep feeding your kids details to prepare them for the move.
- Visit the new house if possible, or take an online tour. Walk your kids through the house, let them pick a room, and show them the neighborhood. Show them everything good about the house, and you can replace any lingering bad feelings with ones of excitement.
- Have a party to say goodbye to your current home. Invite their friends to provide some closure, and make sure your kids know they have plenty of ways to stay in touch with their friends.
When You Move
- When everything is being packed, allow your kids some time to dawdle in packing their things. Allowing them to pack last and helping them pack their own things in special boxes will let them know their belongings have meaning.
- Keep some of your kids’ favorite toys or belongings with you in the car, rather than in the moving truck. It will help with the trip, and your kids will have something to relax with while waiting to unpack their things.
- Give everyone work to do once you arrive at the new house. Assigning your kids a simple checklist of tasks will help them feel invested in the new home, and keep them out of your hair while you try to get everything moved in. Allow them to unpack their room or to help with easy chores around the house.
After the Move
- Bring your kids around their new town and neighborhood to show them the great things they’ll get to know. Find a park, take a bike ride through your neighborhood, or go to a local bakery. Introduce yourself and your kids to the neighbors to help them feel at home in your new house.
- Remember that helping your child adjust to a new location might mean giving them some space. Over time, encourage them to get involved in activities they have always enjoyed and meet new people.
- While they’re meeting new people, encourage them to stay in touch with old friends. Technology has given everyone the means to stay in touch, and you should help your kids utilize this to stay in touch with friends.
For more tips and tricks on moving and preparation for your homeownership journey check out our Get Mortgage Ready Guide below!