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Moving house with your children

Moving house with your children
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Ideas to help your family house move go without a hitch

Moving house is generally acknowledged to be one of life’s great stressors. Dealing with the logistics, the waiting and the uncertainty is a headache for adults who are at least somewhat in control of the situation. For children, it can be a whole other level of stress. How do parents make moving house easy on their kids? We’ve already got a post about moving house with a baby, but older children have their own needs, too.

Talk about the move early on

Getting your children and young adults involved with the moving process from the start will give them plenty of time to get used to the idea. Let them visit the new house, and explore the area. Get them excited about choosing new things for their bedrooms.

Casual conversations can make a stressful subject like moving house easier to handle. Talking about it on the school run, during bath time or when you’re cuddled up on the sofa means that your children are more likely to talk about their worries; and they may also feel relaxed about the move, too.

Use books and storytelling to ease the transition

Sharing books and stories about house moves can give children the words to discuss what they are feeling about the move. The Book Trust has some recommendations for children of various ages.

Many children’s TV series have a house move episode, including Topsy and Tim on Cbeebies. And movies like My Neighbour Totoro and Inside Out and Cheaper by the Dozen can help, too.

Get your children involved in the move

Children are not always the most willing of helpers, but getting involved with low stakes tasks like boxing up toys will – possibly – raise their enthusiasm. An older child may be helpful in taking charge of a pet’s needs during the move.

A house move is a good time to declutter; but sweeping out all your child’s apparently unwanted toys might not be such a good idea if it’s likely to cause them distress. So be mindful and involve them in the process.

Let your children pick out new furniture, bedding and décor for their bedroom. And if there’s a toy they can have at the new house that was not possible at the old house (for example, a tree house or a bike) lean heavily on that.

Give your child space to feel what they feel about your house move

Children may not yet have the skills to navigate the mixed feelings that can arise about moving house. Do whatever you can to help them out: talking is a good start, and being understanding about any lapses in behaviour; but also supporting them to get enough sleep and exercise, while eating regular meals and healthy snacks.

Look after your own wellbeing while moving house

Anything you as a parent can do to reduce your own stress during the house move will be of benefit to your children. Look after your sleep, exercise and diet in the run-up to the move. Consider paying for services like packing, rather than trying to do it yourself. Ask for help from friends and family. And use self-storage to ease logistics, for example, if your new place is short on cupboard space until you’ve had some built-in furniture installed, get items you won’t need immediately into storage.

Childcare on moving day

You know your family best, and some young people will be really useful as an extra pair of hands. Others – particularly mobile babies, toddlers and pre-schoolers – not so much. The combination of people at work carrying heavy loads, open doors and an unfamiliar setting is particularly stressful for anyone looking after a wayward child! If you can, organise overnight childcare – perhaps a sleepover with a friend or with grandparents – so that you can do moving day in peace and enjoy the first night in your new home.

Best of luck with the moving process, and we hope that you and your whole family enjoy your new home.


Question and Answer


Are items temporarily in my storage unit covered by my self-store insurance?

If you put items temporarily in your storage unit, they will still be covered by your insurance. You should let us know if the contents of your storage unit goes up in value, though.


Are my stored goods insured while in transit?

Store and Insure insures your stored goods while you’re moving them in a covered vehicle between your storage unit and your home and back again. If you use a professional remover, your goods will be covered by their insurance.