Moving is exhausting for adults and for children. It’s a process that can be boring and also scary. It’s especially difficult if your kids are leaving behind friends and will need to switch schools.
But parents can make the process easier for kids and teens by getting them involved in the moving process. These steps can give young ones some confidence that their opinions matter and also lead to some interesting conversations.
This doesn’t mean giving children everything they want and moving into a house that looks like a castle or putting a video game console in every room, but there are plenty of opportunities to listen and consider their input.
When visiting homes, one of the best ways to get children interested in the process is to ask their opinions on their potential future bedrooms. Also, ask them if they have decorating ideas for their rooms, and be prepared with suggestions to encourage the conversation.
When touring a house, point out things that might appeal to kids—pools, basketball courts, a backyard where you can install a swing set or playhouse, etc. If you have a dog, point out how the yard will be a nice spot for the family pet.
Contact the local schools in areas you’re considering moving to and ask if you can get a tour. This not only gives children a chance to see their future schools, it gives parents an excellent opportunity to ask school officials any questions. Remember to ask about the academics at the school, what the sports teams are like, and what extracurricular activities are available. This is especially helpful in getting young kids who are just starting their education excited about starting school.
Before finalizing a decision on a house, take a drive around the neighborhood. Find a local park and take a walk around, and have your children play on the playground or take a walk to explore trails and sports fields. You want them to get comfortable in the places they will be going.
Then head to the downtown area to find out about what stores and restaurants you can visit after you move into your new home. Another great idea is to have lunch at a local dining destination, and let the kids choose where to go. And don’t forget to find the neighborhood ice cream spot!
These smart and simple steps can have your kids feeling good about their future home.