Congratulations, you are moving! Maybe you bought your dream home, or your spouse has a new job in a new city, or you are expecting another baby and just need more space. No matter what the reason, you and your family are moving into a fresh, new place, and you may be moving with small children.
You’ve got the keys to the new house, the moving truck is loaded, and you’ve cleaned out your old place, so you are now ready for this big life change. Still, you need to wrangle your small children while you lug boxes, and dig feverishly for the box with the bowls and spoons.
How do you successfully manage this juggle keeping everyone content, and most importantly, safe? We have a few ideas for moving with small children in tow. You can do it!
Our Top Tips for Moving with Small Children
It Takes a Village (of family, friends, and neighbors!) – Now is a good time to take that grandparent, neighbor (old or new) or friend up on their offer to watch your kids. You can get the most work done, and have a bit of peace of mind while the kids are happily playing somewhere else. This is a good time, to install your outlet covers, baby gates, and other childproofing features to the house before the kids return.
Boxes are Fun! – Remember last Christmas? Boxes are one of the best, and simplest, toys for kids out there. Let the kids play with the empty boxes before you take them to the recycle center. You’d be surprised how their imaginations can turn a large, ordinary box into a castle, spaceship or race car. Provide washable markers, stickers, and strong tape. Seriously, cardboard boxes are really a lot of fun!
Little Helpers – Older kids, or even a calm toddler can actually be helpful. Give kids small, doable tasks like carrying light boxes, organizing silverware in a drawer, or putting rolls of toilet paper in the bathrooms. Kids love to feel useful and will be excited to help put the new house together. A bonus of all this kid labor is it will tire them out, making the first nap time or bedtime in the new house an easy transition.
Draw the New House – Set up a small table and chairs and have some art supplies at the ready. Tell the kids to draw a picture of their new house. Encourage them to imagine what they will do in their new bedrooms, the new friends they will make in the neighborhood, and the fun things your family will do in your new pad. Scan the pictures they draw to use on your new family stationery, or a sweet holiday card.
Gated Community – Corral those little doggies! Babies and toddlers can be safely contained in a play yard, like a Pack-n-Play. Older children can be confined to a large, mobile-gated play area either inside the house, or in the backyard. Set them up with a special new toy and a few snacks to keep things interesting. This way you can keep an eye on them and know they are secure while you focus on getting your work done.
Phew! You did it. Moving is an enormous task and can be exhausting both physically and emotionally. By staying calm and organized, everyone will remember the experience in a positive light. You are almost ready to crash on the couch with a well-deserved cold drink!
Just a few more details to ensure that everything continues to go smoothly. We have put together a handy checklist for your new house.
An important checklist for moving into a new house
- Make sure you have purchased Mortgage Protection Insurance, so that your biggest and most important investment is protected.
- Hold a family meeting and make an emergency exit plan. Make sure small children know what to do in case of an emergency, like a fire
- Ensure that your mail is being forwarded and that all your contacts, utilities, and bills have your new address.
- Confirm the closest hospital and urgent care and the quickest route to drive there.
- Order new return address labels or maybe a fancy address stamp!
So, now that you’ve checked everything off your to-do list, the boxes are all inside, and you are starting to unpack, you can breathe a sigh of relief. Your family is safe and secure in your new cozy place, and the best years of your life are ahead. You are about to embark on a new journey and create special memories in your new home.
Now…if only you can find the box where you packed your camera!
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This information is provided for general consumer educational purposes only and is not intended to provide legal, tax or investment advice. Dollar amounts are for illustrative purposes, not actual.