Moving to a new home can be challenging for anyone, but relocating with children brings added layers of stress and uncertainty for young ones. However, the major life transition of moving doesn’t have to overwhelm kids if parents use strategic planning, communication, and professional help from local movers. Follow these key tips for smoothing your family’s big move.
The Role of Local Moving Companies in Chicago
Local moving companies in Chicago play a crucial role in ensuring a smooth transition for families. Their expertise in navigating the local terrain, knowledge of family-friendly neighborhoods, and efficient moving services make them valuable partners in the process. When choosing a moving company, consider their experience with family moves and their commitment to making the relocation experience positive for children.
Give them plenty of warning
Children feel more secure when kept informed about major family happenings. As soon as you confirm moving plans, gently break the news by emphasizing positive elements like a bigger backyard, their room, or new friends. Giving plenty of lead time and periodically discussing preparations helps avoid shocking kids right before moving day chaos ensues.
Get them engaged in planning
Making children an active part of move preparations cultivates excitement versus fear of the unknown. Take them to see the new house and let them choose paint colors or decoration themes for their new rooms. Ask for suggestions on fun places to explore in the new neighborhood. Giving kids ownership in parts of the process makes it a family adventure.
Assign moving roles
Giving each child labeled responsibilities like “official snack captain” or “picture taker for the family journal” utilizes their unique skills for productive contributions amid the hustle and bustle. Post a roles list the family sees regularly so kids feel helpful.
Purge toys together
Sit down with kids in their current play areas and sort through possessions calmly. Make three piles – keep, donate, toss – and explain the moving truck has limited space so choosing your favorite toys to take is important. Letting children decide which comfort items move with them provides agency. And reducing clutter makes packing their rooms faster.
Pack their “first-day” bag
Packing an essentials bag for kids lowers first-day stresses in unfamiliar surroundings. Include favorite snacks and drinks, a couple of toys and books, pajamas, medication if needed, and a family photo. Having familiar comforts handy reminds them Mom and Dad are there as their lifelong constants amidst change.
Organize a moving countdown
Buy a calendar and some stickers so your kids can cross off days as the moving date nears. Watching time pass concretely builds anticipation in a positive framework. About a week before moving day, discuss details about the physical process so they know what to expect.
Set a calendar of local firsts
To stimulate ongoing excitement of discovering new territory together, print out a calendar everyone sees and jot down upcoming firsts like the first picnic at the community park or first library memberships. Cross off past adventures as you bond over novel experiences.
Help them say goodbye
Allow kids to bid farewell to their old home if possible. Taking pictures of them at previous houses helps memorialize fond memories. Writing goodbye letters to leave at the old house provides closure. They can even gift the new inhabitants something special they’ve outgrown like favorite local park passes.
Entertain them on moving day
Hire local moving companies in Chicago to handle transporting possessions from the old home to the new one so you can devote time and attention to children on intense moving days. Have snacks, devices, and activity ideas ready to keep kids engaged, preferably in another area of the house. Remaining calm and present helps them feel secure.
Have a personalized scavenger hunt
Once furniture is arranged but boxes are still scattered about, have kids race to find “treasures” around the new house labeled with their names, containing little gifts like art supplies, legos, or favorite candy. Makes unpacking boxes more adventurous!
Set up their new space
Unpacking their new rooms should be a top priority when moving in so kids feel comfortably nested straightaway. Help hang up prized artwork side-by-side, organize cherished toys within reach, and neatly store preferred clothes in drawers kids can access themselves. Ownership of space builds confidence.
“Safe Zone” in the New Home
Upon arrival at the new home, create a ‘safe zone’ for your children. Set up their rooms first, complete with familiar bedding, toys, and other comforting items. Having a designated space that feels like ‘theirs’ amidst the unpacking chaos can ease the transition.
Let them pick their new “spots”
Children often have special nooks or platforms around the house they prefer sitting to play, read, or dream. After carrying things inside, let kids scope out potential new special spots in the yard or home bases that speak to their developing interests so they feel understood.
Investigate the area
Once everything has settled and you have moved into your new house, take a joint exploration of the area. Allow children to choose which parks, playgrounds, or libraries they want to visit first. Adjustment and curiosity are facilitated when a family settles into the area.
Meet neighbors early on
Introduce children to friendly neighbors right away so they begin recognizing familiar faces around a new home. Kids will feel more at ease venturing outdoors independently later if they’ve socially acclimated. Invite neighborhood peers their age over to play so bonds take root sooner.
Start new traditions early
Introduce beloved routines or create fresh traditions post-move so your family begins connecting happy moments to a new home right away. Friday movie nights, Saturday morning pancakes, or welcome neighborhood parties cement bonds.
Relocating as a family introduces massive change at once. But parents can ease uncertainty for children in transition by giving ample preparation time for a move, involving them directly in planning fun details, dedicating their fullest attention to moving day itself, and settling kids into new home surroundings right away.