There are a lot of moving parts that go into the thought process when it comes to moving: house hunting, researching schools, picking out awesome neighborhoods, choosing your reputable ProMover’s, going through all of that stuff and packing everything up...
Sometimes the less practical, but nonetheless important considerations don’t get their full due.
During a move, it’s easy to be all about the business, but make sure to dedicate a good amount of time to preparing your children for the journey.
Any transition can be difficult for children. Yet, with ample preparation, moving can be an exciting and fun adventure for kids. Statistics show that by the end of the third grade, 1 in 6 of the nation’s public school third graders will have changed schools at least 3 times.
Follow our Steinway Moving & Storage Guide to Moving with Children to help keep the kids happy, involved and excited for their new adventure.
PREPARING FOR THE MOVE
Children don’t typically take well to change. In fact,they thrive on routine. So it’s essential to get your children involved in the moving process as soon as possible, giving them ample time to prepare themselves for the change.
Be honest and upfront about the coming move
Children like to know what is going on. They are intuitive and will ask a lot of questions if they sense that something is going on that they don’t know about. It’s suggested that sitting down with your kids and clearly explaining the upcoming move will help them feel more comfortable. If possible, be open and truthful about why you’re moving (if it’s for a new job, tell them how excited you are about it and how good it’s going to be for them), and welcome any and all feelings that they may have. Be prepared for some negativity and sadness. Give them a safe place to express their feelings. It can do wonders. By talking out their feelings and concerns, negativity and fear can be alleviated, fast-tracking their emotional response to excitement and curiosity.
Let them help you choose your new house
Allowing your children to feel included in the house hunting process will help to get them excited about it. Let them see your final 3 choices, either by visiting them if they’re close enough, or taking virtual tours online. Seeing the actual home will help them to visualize themselves there, making the transition much easier when the day comes.
If possible, visit your children’s new school
If you’re moving close enough, set up a time to let your kids visit their new school or daycare. Becoming familiar with the environment, and possibly their new teachers, will help ease them in to their new routine.
Let your children decorate their new rooms
If they’re old enough, give your child a budget and help guide them with choosing paint colors, fabrics and furniture for their new room. If you have young children, let them tell you some ideas that they would like to see and create their room around that. (Steinway Moving & Storage Pro Tip: For the little ones, it’s sometimes a good idea to keep some of their own furniture and model their new room after their old room. Having some of their “special things” in the new place will make it feel more familiar).
Host a “See You Later!” party
The idea of leaving their friends is one of the most difficult parts for a child to cope with during a move. Make sure that your children feel the love of all of their friends and family by hosting a get-together for them to exchange phone numbers and e-mail addresses with their friends. In a world as mobile friendly as today, keeping it touch isn’t as hard as it used to be. Maybe even set up some future play dates at the party so that they have something to look forward to.
DURING THE MOVE
Pack a special box for moving day
Let each of your children pack one special box to take with them in the car on moving day. It can hold favorite toys, blankets, stuffed animals, books, pictures – whatever they decide. Once you get to your new home, your children will feel much better by having some of their favorite items with them.
Research has shown that children tend to mimic their parents – not just in actions, but in their stress levels as well. The more you keep calm and show excitement about the new move, the more likely your children will feel more at ease about the change.