As a parent, making a big move with your family is one of the most exciting, yet stressful, experiences you can have together. And as a military parent, the concept of moving is probably all too familiar. Although most kids will experience a move in their lifetime, it’s never as easy as “pick up and go” without a few meltdowns. Moving with kids doesn’t have to be difficult though. If you’re getting ready for a new home, here is our checklist for how to move with kids.
Kids can feel when a big change is coming. Whether they catch a whispered conversation or notice more people in and out of the house, a child will figure out that something is changing. The best way to prevent confusion is to start talking with your children about your move early. Once you and your partner have made the decision, bring your kids in and talk out as many details as you can. If they’re very young, highlight the positives in easy-to-understand terms or even bring a favorite teddy bear into the mix to help explain. Older kids can take more details and are bound to have endless questions. Being open and answering as many questions as you can will put them at ease and further prepare them for the change that is ahead.
Make To-Do Lists, and Stick To Them
One great thing about military moves is that you have the option to use a team of professional packers and movers. Whether you decide to do it on your own or let the pros handle it, it’s a great idea to make to-do lists for you and the kids. This will keep you accountable and prevent last-minute scrambling. It also makes your kids feel like they have an important role in the move. You can even make a game out of packing by playing with boxes and letting them add decorations to the outside.
If you can physically show your children the new house, great! If you can’t, try to show them the place digitally. Whether it’s a video from the realtor or going block by block on Google Maps, giving your kids a visual of their new home can make the whole thing much less frightening.
Dealing with Multiple Moves
As a member of a military family, you may find yourself moving more often than most. If this is the case, there are ways to create stability in your kids’ lives that can stick with them no matter where you go. Find a sport your child loves and ensure they can be enrolled in a team anywhere. A yearly trip to visit the grandparents can create a sense of stability and normalcy. Fostering these types of events will help give your children the security they crave, even if you have to move more often than most.
Moving with kids doesn’t have to be a struggle. Being patient and positive sets a great example for your children during this stressful time. As a military member, working with your sponsor at your new unit can also ease the burden.
If you are looking to purchase a home in your new town, be sure to contact us and lock in a great rate with a VA Loan or traditional mortgage option. We can’t wait to help make your move a bit easier.