It doesn’t matter where you’re relocating, moving with kids can be stressful on you and them, especially with young kids who won’t or cannot tidy, pack away and sort out their own belongings.
I don’t want to move! I want to stay here.
Why are you packing my toys away?!
Kids may moan about absolutely everything since the concept of moving home can be difficult for children to comes to terms with.
Children Can Make Relocating 100X More Stressful.
But luckily, with a few simple tricks and a bit of patience, moving can be an enjoyable and fun experience for everyone!
Check out our Top Tips for moving with kids, and make relocating a breeze!
Tips For Moving With Kids!
It can be difficult for everyone to say goodbye to a home they’ve fallen in love with or friends they’ve made in the neighborhood. Plus, it might be difficult for children to fully comprehend why you need to move, making relocating all the more challenging.
Young children and even teenagers often live in the present moment and as such will struggle to understand any long-term benefits of moving.
That’s why it’s a good idea to have a strategy in place and to follow the Top Tips we mention below.
Tip #1 Talk To Them.
As soon as you know you’re definitely moving, share the news with your kids – not before.
There’s no point in stressing your family out if the move isn’t certain. Plus, some kids may look forward to the prospect of moving and if it falls through at the last minute they might be disappointed and upset.
It’s best to communicate with your kids once everything is in motion. Make them feel apart of everything, and openly discuss the new and exciting changes about to happen.
We also recommend reassuring them that all their toys, books, teddy bears, and imaginary friends will be coming with them. Younger children especially might think that they have to leave everything behind including their belongings.
Tip #2 Get to Know Your New House.
If the house is nearby, get your kids excited by going to see it.
This is going to be your new room! How would you like to decorate it?
Let them see their room and have fun planning how they could paint it and fill it with their toys.
If you’re relocating further away, you could take an exciting day trip or weekend away to show them the house. Try to incorporate the trip with fun things to do in the area.
If you can’t do this, show them lots of pictures of the house and neighborhood. You could even draw out the room, and let them decide how they want their furniture arranged.
Tip #3 Let Them Help With Packing
If they’re old enough to help, let them (or make them if they’re moody teenagers). Make sure younger kids know that their stuff is being boxed away and taken to your new home and not being thrown in the trash. Older kids will understand, but it may be more difficult for little ones to understand why Mr. Teddy is being squished in a box.
You could even try to make packing a fun game by decorating the boxes so they can clearly see which are theirs.
Once you move, set up their room as soon as you can, even if it means ordering pizza and keeping your kitchen in boxes for a couple of days.
Unpacking their room first will give them a sense of familiarity that will help keep anxiety and stress levels to a minimum.
Tip #4 Get to Know The Neighborhood.
As soon as possible, become a part of your new community. Maybe find out which of your neighbors have kids a similar age, and invite them round for a play date.
Consider holding a welcoming party for all your local neighbors. This is a great way to get to know your community and take your kid’s minds off the move. Making new friends will help your children feel more positive about moving.
Participate in local activities that will allow both you and your family to meet new people. If your child is on the shy side, maybe smaller get-togethers at home would be better. Try talking to them about how to make new friends and reassure them that it’s okay to feel nervous or scared. Help them think of ways to break the ice with the kids at their new school.
If you can, perhaps incorporate your move at the beginning of a school year when lots of kids are new to their class.
Tip #5 Keep Your Routines.
Do you always get ice cream or pancakes on Sunday afternoons? Or maybe you spend Saturday morning at the park?
Whatever routines you can stick to, you should do so. Children may remember that Friday is pizza night and if you don’t do it in the new house they could use this as a reason to throw a tantrum.
It’s a good idea to remain consistent with meal times and bedtimes. Plus, keeping kids in their routine will help keep them stay calm and will help you feel more in control. Calmer kids will equal a calmer move after all.
But the most important thing to remember is that while moving might be stressful for you, it will be even more upsetting for your kids. As much as possible, try to keep things positive with them and turn the whole experience into a grand adventure.
If anything gets delayed that stresses you out, try not to let your kids know. Stress and anxiety are almost contagious between parents and children so involving them in the positive parts of the move and not anything that gets a little bit out of hand is important.
Make the process fun, memorable and as stress-free for them as possible. It will help you feel more relaxed too!