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Practical advice for moving with kids

Practical advice for moving with kids

Whether you're going one mile down the road with local movers or several thousand across the country with long-distance ones, moving day is a major life event for everyone involved. That's especially true for kids, who may be experiencing a move for the first time.

Want to help your kids have a positive and productive move? Take the following advice to heart:

Get the point across and discuss

Moving can be a major shock to the system for kids, as Parents magazine pointed out. Every child is different - some will be happy or at least indifferent about the move - but others have attachments to their room, backyard and other parts of their old home, as well as to the memories formed there.

How can you get them prepared for this substantial change? For younger kids, it's important for parents to slowly and clearly introduce the information and give them time to process it. That's especially important if the move covers a significant distance and means friends, family, school and favorite places in the local area won't be seen with the same frequency. While there's no surefire way to dispel every instance of apprehension or sadness, taking time to talk about the move, listen to any issues expressed by your child and address them, if possible, is a strong step forward in the process.

For older kids, reactions may move more toward anger than anxiety or tears, but a similar approach that's adjusted for their age can be similarly helpful. In both instances, it can be productive to point out the important and fun parts of the area around your new home and, if possible, discuss time to visit family and friends near your old one.

Kids with moving boxes.Moving with kids requires some special considerations.

Share experiences

Answering questions about your family's new home, city and region can help alleviate anxiety about moving to a new place. If you can, bring your kids along on trips to see the new home and survey the surrounding area. Forming positive memories early on, like visiting a restaurant with their favorite food, library, playground, candy shop or similar location can help them start to see some good things related to the move.

Make moving in more comfortable

Younger kids may benefit from having their room set up first following the move, Bright Horizons suggested. This can help them feel like they're in a more familiar place and give them access to their favorite toys, games, books and other items - a great relief after a long move.

Older kids likely don't need their entire rooms set up, but it may be worth it to work ahead with them and ensure the items they really want to use after they're finished moving in for the day - computers, tablets, smartphones and plenty of others - are quickly accessible and ready. In some cases, that may mean making sure an internet connection is active and a router is ready to be set up on moving day - something everyone in the family can benefit from.

For more information, check out our in-depth guide to moving with children.

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