If you’ve ever moved as a child, you can understand how stressful and chaotic it felt. Children are receptive to their environment; when that starts to shift or change, it can pose a few questions or concerns. Depending on your child’s age, the transition from their current home to the new property through a real estate agent can take a while. Older children attached to their school, community, and friends may have a more challenging time adapting to a new location. Younger children can also get stressed over the move but typically will transition to their new community provided they are supported throughout the change.
Here are a few things to keep in mind as you get ready to move with children with the help of a real estate agent, regardless of age.
It doesn’t matter if they’re only a few years old; small children become overly anxious about the unknown. When they’ve known one home for their entire lives, the thought of having a new bedroom, kitchen, backyard, or school can be intensely challenging to embrace. If you’ve noticed your little one struggling with sleep, behaviours, or difficulty switching routines, they may be stressed about moving.
Further, children are very likely to feed off your energy. Moving is stressful for adults; packing up the home, sorting out the buying process, trying to get everything switched over to the new home, and more, it’s a nerve-wracking situation. If you’ve become irritated, upset, anxious, or saddened throughout the buying process, your children are going to pick up on that. While negative energy is common with the moving process, it’s essential to remain positive and upbeat. Invest in a quality planner and a real estate agent to track things you need to handle throughout the week and cross them off as completed.
All children will have questions about the move. Whether they’d like to know where their room is in the home, how you’ll bring all their stuff from this house to the next, or what that means for their friends – it’s important not to get short with them as they try to understand this life change.
Please take a few moments before sharing news of the move to get answers to their pressing questions for school-age children. Talk to the school districts to find out their new school, church, programs, or clubs. Create a small bullet list of updated information to give them to keep referring to it when they forget. If there are questions that you don’t know the answer to, be honest about that too. Make it a priority to find out the answer and get back to them as quickly as possible. By remaining transparent with them, they’ll be more inclined to accept the answers you give them.
As adults, we see moving to a new home as the perfect opportunity to go through our belongings. After all, there’s no point bringing items with you if you don’t use them. For children, the change of residence may spark a desire to hold on to as many personal belongings as they can. If you’re dealing with younger children, only sort through toys and belongings after talking to them about the process.
Explain that donating toys will give other children the opportunity to have toys they can use, especially since the older, unused toys haven’t been loved for a while. Should your child be determined they suddenly love all the old items you haven’t seen them use in months, don’t fight it. Allow them to pack their things for the new home and revisit the conversation a few weeks after you’ve moved. Check out the list of condos for sale in Oshawa.
Alternatively, you can also sort through their items after they’ve fallen asleep. This sorting method should be used for smaller children that may not notice old books or toys missing from their collection, as opposed to older kids who have expressly stated they want to keep certain items. Remember, the move is stressful for everyone. Kids often feel like they have no control over the move or the situations surrounding the decision in general, making them determined to dictate what belongs to the new house.
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Older children will often worry about their friends disappearing from their lives, mainly if they’ve formed close relationships. It’s a significantly stressful event that typically causes a lot of grief with all children, but social components of childhood development make friendships of great importance. Always remind children that moving doesn’t mean a loss of friendships. Take the time to reach out to the parents of younger children to arrange playdates or sleepovers once you’ve settled into the new property. For older children, set up a social media account that they can use to keep in touch with their friends remotely.
Any child that is old enough to have a cell phone or social media account can find ways to stay in touch with old friends. This is true regardless of distance (especially in the case of international moves). While the relationship’s dynamic may change (for example, they may not see each other every day), knowing that the friendships won’t disappear important for children. This is also important when it comes to preteens or teenagers too.
Although packing may prove a bit difficult for children, getting them involved in the process can also include setting up their new room. If you have older children, ask them if they’d like to paint their room and take them to the store to select a new colour for their walls. Likewise, you can also have them purchase new bedding, artwork, accessories, and fun details to go in their new space. Older children are often able to separate the old house and the new home, making adaptation easier.
If you have a younger child, stick with the current setup in their new room for the first few weeks. Try to arrange their room as quickly as possible when you’ve moved to get them back into their routine. Having a similar setup to the old space can make it easier to adapt to the new home through a real estate agent, especially if the layout is similar. Avoid making significant changes to the room (such as new bedding, furniture, or accessories), even if they seem excited at the time. Children will often want something that reminds them of the old home, particularly during the adjustment period.
After a few weeks of the old layout, ask them how they’d feel about changing the space. If they seem excited, start small and build from there. Start by changing their bedding, accessories, or layout of their room. Making minor changes is easy enough to revert it to their old bedroom without having to spend countless hours making that possible.