Moving is a very stressful moment in life, with a lot of planning and packing to do. Moving to a new house can be even more difficult for children to handle because they often feel like they have no control over the change. Kids need time and extra attention so that they can transition to the new home smoothly. Use these tips for preparing your children for a house move to help them adjust to their new surroundings and make the move less stressful for everyone.
Have Open Discussions With Your Kids
You might be considering a move for a change of scenery or need for a bigger home. However, you might be moving for career or financial reasons, meaning the decision is not yours to make. In any case, you need to include your children in your discussions, giving them as much information about the move as possible. Take into account your child’s personality and your moving circumstances when talking with them. Be open and honest about your childrens’ questions and reactions, whether it is positive or negative. This will help your child feel more at ease about the change. One strategy is to have regular take-away or game nights followed by discussions about the move.
Visit Your New House Together
Take your kids to your new home before the big moving day. Show them all the rooms, especially their bedroom, as well as the neighbourhood. If possible, take them to important areas like the nearby park, shops, or school. This is a good time for your child to meet neighbours or to make new friends, allowing them to better adjust to their new surroundings. By visiting the new area with your kids, it will help get rid of uncertainty about the move.
Focus On The Positives
Children will usually focus on the big changes so it is important to reassure them of the things that will stay the same. Tell them that their toys, books, and clothing will be coming with them. Try to tell them of the advantages of moving to a new house and explain why it is a positive experience. Highlight the great things about your new house or city, rather than complaining about the aspects that you don’t like and make the effort to avoid comparing your new house to your old one, as this will remind your children of what they have lost. Also, even though you may be tired or stressed from planning a move, keep a positive attitude about everything. If your children sees that you are positive, they’ll feel more confident that everything will be alright.
Get Them Involved As Much As Possible
Often, children will feel like they have been ignored in the whole decision process. Also, if you just tell them about what it is like to move house without having tangible experience, they will have difficulty understanding the implications of your words. That is why you need to involve them in many activities related to moving. You could let them create a scrapbook of drawings and photographs of both your old and new home. Read children’s books about moving and have them help out with selecting furniture for their new room or packing an essentials box for your first few days at the new house. Allow them to be present on the big day. They can watch the movers, have a more personal experience of what a move involves, and process the fact that their valuables are being carried out of the house.
Routines may be difficult to maintain during the chaos that is moving house, especially since you will be removing items and furniture and have many people coming and going. Leave some of that chaos to removal companies, so that you have time to focus on your kids. Children are dependent on predictability so any significant change removes the security that comes with routines. Try to maintain daily or weekly rituals so that things are not too disruptive for your child. Keep having takeaway or movie nights, weekend family trips, or regular recreational activities to show your children that everything is okay. Once you move to your new house, maintain these rituals to help your kids feel reassured and have a better transition.
Prepare your children for the big moving day by following these tips. With a bit of planning, time, and special attention, your kids will be able to better comprehend and adjust to the move to your new home.
Have any other tips for helping your child have a smooth transition to a new house? Please share them in the comments below! And if you’re moving house in the coming months don’t forget to check out my moving house check list and my money saving tips for moving house.
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