With the long summer holidays just around the corner, there may be a chance to enjoy, rather than dread, a house move with the children around.
Moving home can be stressful enough for the adults, but spare a thought for the younger members of the family, and channel their energy in a positive and helpful way.
In all the excitement of moving it may sometimes be difficult to remember that the young children in the family are also facing a change.
Harrison Murray development director Jackie Scotten said: “Selling the home and moving house can seem very daunting for some children, leaving them facing a huge change in their lives with new surroundings, new friends and possibly a new school.
“However old the children are, try and get them involved in the moving process by talking about the move, taking them on a fun trip to see a new school or new parks and places to eat, and give them little tasks to complete.”
Here’s how to get the children involved:
– Initially, chat to them about the family’s plans and get them on side when talking about moving to a new home in a new area – with lots to explore.
– Many children are expert hoarders, so introduce some eye-catching storage boxes and challenge them to sort out their toys/ belongings into things they really want to take with them and those to say goodbye to – this will help with de-cluttering too!
– For younger children, try and make sure that their boxed toys – with a label they can make themselves – are last into the removal van for easy access on arrival at the new home.
– Get your children involved in labelling other boxed items – with older children writing lists of contents.
– If possible, allow your younger children to select their new bedroom, decide on a colour theme and treat them to some new cushions, throws etc – but don’t overlook the favourite belongings that they may insist on taking.
– Let them say goodbye if you are moving out of the area. Take photographs and collect contact details from your child’s friends so they know they won’t lose touch.
– Ideally on the day of the move, have friends or relatives look after your children. If this isn’t possible, keep the children in the loop as to what’s happening and try and give them small tasks to do – but keep them small so that it doesn’t make the process more stressful for you!
– On arrival at the new house, encourage them straight away to put out a few initial belongings in their rooms to help make their mark on the new home.
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