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Moving house is a big step for everyone involved, especially your children. Moving from familiarity to the unknown may be daunting for your little (or not so little) ones, but don’t let that put a downer on the move. I’ve moved twice with my young family and whilst it’s been made easier by staying in the same area, here are my nine simple steps to take when helping your children adjust to life in their new family home.

There’s no place like home especially for your children - by Guy Lambert
  • Turning the negative into a positive When children move away from their friends they may feel that they have lost a sense of belonging. Emphasise all the positive things that will come from moving house: exploring a new area, new hobbies/activities, making new friends, a bigger bedroom for them (if it’s true of course).  Hopefully they will still be able to see their old friends but maybe less often.  There is always Skype and FaceTime so they can regularly stay in touch with their old friends.
  • Comfort your child Try to discuss the move in advance, to get your child used to the idea (as many months ahead as possible with older children). Try and give them as much information as you can. If they are upset or angry, be sympathetic towards them.  Selling your home and buying a new one can be stressful whatever your age but remember that your anxiety about the move can rub off on them so try to remain calm around them and talk about it all as a family.  Reassure them that any choas or mess is only temporary!
  • Celebrate the move Throw a leaving party for your children, especially if you are moving further away, can be a great idea.  It will mark the end of one chapter and the positive start of something new! Let them plan the day and invite their friends – getting addresses and phone numbers for invites will also be good to take with you so that they can keep in touch. Turn leaving into a celebration, something to be happy about!
  • Familiarise yourselves with the local area Before you move visit the new area as a family as many times as you can, and point out local landmarks and important places, such as where they will go to school (try to have a tour and a taster day) and look out for things that your children might enjoy doing e.g. a bowling alley, cinema or shops.  Do some digging about how you could get involved in the local community maybe through the Scouts or Brownies - get them excited!
  • Tour the new home Even if the family has seen the property more than once, setting up a special tour on the day of the move explaining whose room is whose and where things are going to go will help your children feel comfortable with their new surroundings.  Asking for their opinions and ideas will make them feel involved.  Have a present waiting for them in their new bedroom will help them to have positive associations with their new home!
  • Unpack their rooms first Help your child unpack their room first of all (perhaps just after making a cuppa!) and discuss how they would like it to be arranged. The sooner a child’s room is unpacked the quicker they’ll adjust.
  • Make them feel at home Ask your kids if there is a particular colour/style they would like their new room to be decorated in, a brand new personalised room may take the sadness out of leaving the old one.
  • Get involved You can help your children make friends, by making friends yourself! Introduce yourself to neighbours with similar aged children. Ask other parents about sports clubs/activities that they could recommend.  Finding friends for your children before the school term starts may take away some nerves and feelings of loneliness on their first day.  
  • We’re in this together! Involving the children makes them feel a part of the house hunting process or looking for their new school. Move as a family – support each other if they have worries or are feeling stressed, a move may bring you closer together.  

Buying a new place is an exciting time and helping your family to settle in will mean you can start making memories after the move that will turn your house into a home!

Are you planning to move?  Then check out the superb new homes that are available from Countryside.

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Guy Lambert,
Head of Corporate Communications

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About this blog

Here you’ll find property related blog articles from the team at Countryside as well as independent experts. Expect regular tips and advice on topics such as buying a new home, interior and landscape design, setting up home, mortgages and finance, plus articles on architecture, the property market, regeneration and more.

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