Summer is often when people relocate with their families, so…

“Achieving the right balance between military precision and compassion is the key to a successful move” 

If you are moving to another city far away from where you live now, it‘s a bit more daunting than moving to another home within 10 km

MANTRA: No matter how much time I have, everything important will get done because it has to be. I can do this.

Here are my top ten tips for relocating like a pro:

  1. Get your children involved right from the beginning, do as much with them as is age-relevant. There are great picture books about moving house for the younger ones, but a trip to Ikea pre-move to suss out how the new teenager‘s rooms will look is also an upbeat of way of planning for moving on.

2. Respect the fact that your children‘s friendships will be affected, don‘t brush it under the carpet or play it down. Have fun trying out the technology that you‘ll be using to keep in touch BEFORE you move. It‘s a nice idea to schedule your first reunion before you leave – birthdays or holiday visits work well. Design some fun contact cards too.

3. Make sure that you plan for farewells in advance. Just because you are mega busy, it doesn‘t mean that your friends and children‘s friends aren‘t busy. Give people 3-4 weeks notice. Get the kids to help you design and print then distribute the invite flyers and have plenty in a place where everyone can help themselves. Keep a list of RSVPs.

4. This is a great time to have a massive clearout. Broken toys, outgrown clothes, old tech, out of date food should get thrown out (three weeks) BEFORE the move. Declutter now for a faster, smoother, stress free move. Don‘t forget the cellar. 

5. Make sure you create a fun way of collecting full details of all of those that attend your farewell party, which included surnames and complete addresses, plus their birthdays and a space for a photo and their social media usernames. Create a photobook that you can look at together as a family. 

6. Get some pictures of the area you are leaving to add to your photo book – favourite ice cream parlour, sculptures, the park, the happy faces you see in the local bakery… They can all go in your photobook too. 

7. Make sure that you either organise a cleaner (well in advance) who brings everything or makes sure you have a cleaning bucket with everything to leave your home respectable for the next family. This brings closure so it‘s not a bad idea to have some simple jobs for everyone in the family. Have a radio handy for some upbeat music.

8. On the day of the move, all of your essentials should be packed in your car or the bath (turn off the water supply to the bath if you have bouncy pets or unpredictable children) This is hands off until you move.

9. The last supper. Once everything is done you‘ll be starving and exhausted, even if the removal company does all the work. Have a table booked in a restaurant that all of the family enjoys going to. Go easy on the alcohol, you‘ll need to be feeling fit tomorrow so indulge in dessert instead. 

10. Keep the removal team whether friends or a hired team happy, hydrated and fed. DRINKS: Have rubber bands in different colours to mark the water bottles or marker pens and make sure that the water is cold before they start. An ice bucket in the garden works well. Make sure you have a means of making coffee and tea too. FOOD: Make something beforehand (freeze and forget about it til the night before) that is filling and easy to heat up, serve and eat like a soup or Chilli that can be served up with plenty of bread and butter, in bowls with spoons. ENERGY: Keep some energy-boosting drinks like Coke and Perhaps a fruit juice but make sure that your kids aren‘t drinking too much if sugar makes them loopy. MOTIVATION: If you have older kids perhaps you can invite them to create an upbeat music list on spotify to keep the removal team motivated. 

Get your friends involved to help you with the kids. Moving Day is a great day for a play date. The less people in the house on the day of the move, the better. If it is warm enough outside, get (your neighbours) tables set up outdoors with snacks, drinks, games for the kids etc