In to Uni. In with mates. In with the boyfriend. In with the husband. I’ve moved to a new house several times, but this latest move has been the most difficult… moving with a small child!
They don’t understand patience, or the fact those cardboard boxes aren’t toys. We survived though. So, here’s some tips to share.
1. Think ahead
Organisation is key with any house move, but it’s critical with little ones.
I started the moment we put the house on the market. While that may sound extreme, it meant I could do a small bit every day during that free window when she was sleeping. Tidy a drawer. Throw away expired food from the back of the cupboard. Pack up out-of-season clothes. Manageable daily chunks made it much less stressful on moving day.
2. Box up
Good quality moving boxes are always essential, particularly if you have tons of toys, books, clothes and equipment to move.
Shurgard has an amazing range of moving boxes so you can pack up like experts. Use extra strong boxes for heavy items, and wardrobe boxes to keep clothes protected and wrinkle-free. Plus, bubble wrap for protecting valuables (and stress relief!).
3. Finding that special box
Labelling your boxes is the easiest way to find your items when you unpack. However, when you have a child demanding their favourite toy, speed really is of the essence.
Top Tip: Get your child to decorate their special moving box with stickers or crayons. This will include them in the process, and make finding that special box MUCH easier when you get to your new house.
4. Do a reccy
Moving to a new house can be overwhelming for children. A good tip if you are moving somewhere close, is to visit your new local attractions in the weeks prior to moving day.
Think nearby parks and playgrounds – nice fun things to do that they can become familiar with in their new location.
5. Pack an essentials kit
When moving day arrives, make sure you have an essentials kit ready.
This should contain water, food, books, games and an iPad – all the things you need to keep little ones fed and entertained during the day.
It’s also good to include some first aid supplies, a change of clothes and nappies, and your charger too!
And for really small children – leave out the travel cot/ playpen. You can safely put your child down, and with familiar toys around they will feel much more at ease.
6. Get into a routine
A house move is stressful for adults, but confusing for children too.
Try to get into a routine as soon as possible when you’ve moved into your new place. Setting up their room first is the best option – seeing familiar toys and books will really help them to settle. Then recreate a normal bedtime routine. Unpacking your own boxes might need to wait!
Moving with a child may seem daunting, but they are very resilient and will soon be back to their usual selves. Take the time to say goodbye to their old room, and celebrate their new one.
If you have any additional advice for moving with a child, let us know in the comments below.