Moving house requires a lot of patience and organisation at any time, but when you throw kids into the mix, things can quickly get out of control. Kids on their own require you to have at least three pairs of eyes and eight sets of arms. Keeping them under control at the same time as packing, cleaning and moving is a monumental challenge. In this article, we’ve put together some tips to help make everything go as smoothly as possible.
Pack a survival box
Our number one top tip is to pack a survival box full of essential items. This might be your coffee machine, the kids favourite cuddly toys, snacks, toothbrushes, towels, or anything else that you are likely to need when you get to your new home. Even if you don’t manage to get anything else unpacked on the first day, you’ll have everything you immediately need right there on your first night. Cover the box with stickers or markings to make sure it is easy to identify and load it on to the removal truck last. That way it is the first thing off and you can make yourself a cup of coffee before you tackle the rest. If you are moving early in the morning, make sure you keep things like the TV or some games near the back of the truck. Get these set up straight away, and the kids will stay entertained and out from under your feet while you unload the rest.
Get organised with labels
It can be tempting to devise a complicated organisational system that relies on notebooks, markings, numbers or coloured stickers. Don’t. Put simply, most complex systems fail when put into practice. Packers end up fighting over markers, losing pens in amongst what they are packing, labelling an inordinate amount of boxes as ‘misc’ and everything gets messed up. All you really need are labels: lots and lots of labels. Print a good number of labels for each room of your house. Have 50 labels that say ‘lounge’, 50 that say ‘kitchen’, 50 for the bathroom, billy’s bedroom, ‘Gina’s bedroom’ and every other room in the house. Hand the labels out to whoever is packing up each room and ensure every box gets one. Simple.
Get the kids involved
While it may seem like the best idea to try to get rid of the kids for an afternoon and do all the packing yourself, you may find things go easier and the kids are happier if you keep them involved. Let them pack up their own belongings form their own bedrooms. Set challenges such as who can get finished quickest or who can get their stuff into the least amount of boxes. You can even set mini challenges, regrouping to give out a score and set the next challenge every half an hour.
Go for professional end of tenancy cleaning
Hire a professional cleaning company to complete an end of t1enancy clean. Seriously – just leave it to the pro’s. Not only will this free up time for you to ensure everything else goes smoothly – it will save you a great deal of stress and ensure that the cleaning is done to the exacting standards of the estate agent or letting company. This is most important when moving from rented accommodation, where the return of your deposit depends on everything being just so. However, it is also a considerate thing to do when selling your home and it will mean that there are no complaints to deal with later. A professional cleaning firm that offers an end of tenancy service will know exactly what needs to be done for your home to pass the inspection by the letting agents to ensure you get your deposit back, and their experience means that they’ll get it all done in double quick time. It is usually best to leave the cleaners to it and get the kids out from under their feet – so instead of spending your last hours in your house frantically cleaning – you can go out and enjoy a fun family meal and chat about all the things you have to look forward to in your new home.