Many families move house due to work, school and family commitments. This move is a great, wonderful experience for the whole family, and it’s usually to a bigger house in a better neighborhood. It’s a fresh start for you and your family in a home that they can grow and thrive in, but there are a few things that you need to do before you sign for your new home. Moving can be very difficult to children, especially if you move away from your old neighborhood. You also need to make sure that the house is safe enough for your family, and doesn’t have any hidden costs. When you are looking to move your family to a new home, there are a lot of steps you need to take. To help you get started, we’ve compiled this complete guide:
Getting Your Children on Board
Children thrive in routine, which is why many of them either dislike the move and can consequently lash out. You shouldn’t ignore your children’s emotions, but instead try to get them on board with the move. You can do this through many methods, but generally you should follow these steps:
- Tell Them Early
You should ideally tell your children that they are moving as soon as you’ve decided for certain. Children need time to accept and get used to the idea that they are moving. When you do tell them, reinforce the positives of the move – a bigger room, a nicer backyard, a nearby park, etc. If you have not yet chosen a house to buy, bring them in on the decision. The final decision is up to you, but simply bringing your children with you on the house hunt (or at least to your top choices) can help them adapt. This is because they can see the place, and can even imagine their lives in the new house.
- Let Them House Hunt with You
The reason why some children don’t like moving is because they feel as if all choice has been taken from them. Give some of that choice back by bringing them into the house hunting with you. For instance, you could have them say the top five things that they want the new house to have. You’ll have to edit through and let them know what is realistic and what isn’t, but simply knowing that their wishes are being included will help a lot. Again, you should also bring your children with you when you view the house so that they can become familiar with the house and the neighborhood before they move.
- Answer Their Questions
Your children will naturally be inquisitive, and they’ll have a lot of questions about why you are moving, when, and what will happen to their friends? Be honest and patient with them, but stay positive. The move should be a great, positive event in their lives.
- Get Them Excited
Start planning how their new room will be decorated, and get them involved with the packing. This way they will know exactly where their toys are, and you can even do a bit of spring cleaning in the process.
House Hunting Tips
Getting your children on board is only half of the battle. The other half is finding the perfect house for your whole family. Obviously, you can’t always cater to your child’s wishes, not only because they’re unrealistic, but because their tastes will likely change as they get older. To find the perfect house that you and your family can enjoy, use this checklist:
- Start with the Schools
Your child’s education is crucial, and the quality of school says a lot about the neighborhood. If the school is great, then you can almost count on the area to be filled with good families. As such, you should start by finding the best schools in the area you want to live in, and then narrow down your house hunt to neighborhoods that feed into those schools.
- Know Your Budget
Before you start house hunting, you need to know what your budget is. Furthermore, you should also make your max price for the house much lower than your total budget, just so that you can give yourself some space to make any improvements, if necessary. If you miraculously find a house that fits your needs and your wants, however, you are more than welcome to use your full budget amount.
Tip: Never go over your budget. If you cannot comfortably make the monthly repayments, then the house is too much for you.
- Know Your Needs
When choosing a house, it can be easy to get caught up in key character features. Don’t let a beautiful fireplace sway your decision, however, if the rest of the house doesn’t fit your needs. To help you, draw up a list of what you want your new house to have, and then separate that into two categories: needs and wants. When you find a house that fits all your needs, you have a contender. You can always add the things on your wants list, but your new home needs to be first and foremost what will fit your family and your lifestyle.
- Get it Checked Out
Once you have found a place that you love and that fits all your family’s needs, it’s time to get it inspected. Some problems are too big of a challenge, especially if you want to move in right away, like wood rot or an unstable foundation. Others, however, like pests, are easily combatted. Once you have the house inspection done, you can then decide whether the house is worth buying, or if you can negotiate the price down.
- Easy Fixes
If the house has a pest infestation, for instance, you can easily negotiate a lower price on the home, and then contact a great company like Go-Forth Pest Control near Morganton NC. They will get rid of your problem, and you’ll have saved on the overall price of the house. The same goes for cosmetic fixes like the floors and walls, which you could have changed before you even move in. Know the difference between an expensive fix, and an easy one, and you’ll be able to get the perfect home for you and your family.
- Try to Move During Summer
Moving during the middle of the school year is jarring for all children, which is why, at the very least, you should move during the summer break. If you want to make the transition as easy as possible, try to move during a school change, like from elementary to middle or high school. Otherwise, the younger your children are, the better.
Ideally, you should get someone to watch your kid’s while you are moving the bulk of your items into your new house. If you can’t, have designated areas for your children or jobs that they can do so that the move goes more smoothly. For your youngest children, for instance, you can set them up in a playpen near you. Once you have your things inside your house, it’s time to make the first night at home truly special! Order a pizza, eat ice cream, and watch a family-fun film. Whatever you choose to make your first night special, make sure that your children love it.
Helping Your Family Get Settled
Moving is one thing, getting settled is another. This is the perfect time to decorate your home, make some key memories, and have fun. There are also other things that you need to do to settle in, for you and your children:
- Meet the Neighbors
Though it’s unlikely that you’ll meet your next best friend next door, you should know your neighbors. Often neighborhoods have street parties and or, at least, they could have children themselves. Either way, it’s important to know who your neighbors are – if you’re lucky, you’ll have new friends just across the street!
- Sign Your Children Up to Activities
The best way to get your children to love the new area that they are in is to make it as fulfilling as possible. Sign them up for all the activities that they used to do at their old house. If your child is into sports or other group activities, this is also a great way for them to make new friends – which is especially important if you move during the summer, when they won’t meet their new classmates for a while.
- Continue with Routine
Essentially, make their new lives as routine as possible. The last thing you want when you move is for their lives to be hectic, after all.
Moving your family to a better house in a more affluent neighborhood is a good change for all of you, but you first need to get your children on board, and then you need to find the perfect house for you. Moving doesn’t have to cause a strain on your family dynamic – it should be a fun, exciting new step.