Last updated on February 28th, 2018 at 12:50 pm
Moving house can be exciting, especially if you’re moving somewhere you feel is bigger or better. It might be something you’re doing to relieve daily problems like not having enough space, shortening the commute to work or moving closer to friends and family. So just why do we need to reduce the stress of moving house? Even if it’s a move for the better, it’s still a very stressful process. Let’s take a look at some statistics:
- 2/3 people who have moved recently rate it as their most stressful life event.
- That’s more stressful than relationship breakdown, divorce or a new job.
- The stress of moving is prolonged, usually lasting around 3 months.
- Excessive or prolonged stress can lead to physical and emotional exhaustion, as well as illness.
- Whilst most of us focus on the packing and external physical pressure of moving, there are also psychological effects that we often don’t recognize, based around our feelings of safety, familiarity and routine.
To help you keep your stress levels down during your move, we’ve created a quick stress-reducing hacks video to as well as our infographic below. It’ll only take you less than a minute to watch, but will save you a lot more time than that when it comes to stress and worry! So put down the bubble wrap and boxes, pop your feet up for a minute and watch…
If you’re not a video fan, or you’re somewhere where you can’t watch for any reason, here are the hacks in infographic form, plus a few more!
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Deciding To Move:
Once you’ve decided you’d like to move, making a few smart decisions during those early stages can help reduce your stress across the whole moving period. Here are our top tips:
- Choose your estate agent & solicitor carefully. When things get complicated or go wrong, having experts you can trust to help can do wonders for reducing stress levels.
- Save up first. There’s nothing more stressful than having to account for unexpected expenses on top of everything else, so get prepared. If you don’t need your savings in the end, you can enjoy splashing out on things you need for your new home, or save it as a nest egg for the future.
- Maintain your routine as best you can throughout the move. The less it disrupts your life, the less stressed you will feel. The same applies for children and animals. Keeping their stress levels down by maintaining their familiar routine will in turn keep yours as low as possible.
Hacks For Stress Free Packing:
The packing itself can seem like a mammoth task, especially if you’ve lived in your current home for a long time. To reduce the stress of the job, its good practice to get started early and have a good clear out along the way. Consider selling any unwanted items to make a bit of extra cash towards moving costs, or donating certain items to charity. Once this is complete, these hacks will make packing a breeze:
- Get free boxes from a local supermarket or shop.
- Wrap breakables in clean clothes or towels. Save on bubble wrap & pack twice as fast!
- Label boxes on the sides. You’ll be able to see what things are even when boxes are stacked, and movers will get them in the right place.
- Pack an overnight bag of basics. This will be a lifesaver on the first night.
- Cut handles in the side of boxes to make lifting easier.
- Keep drawers full to save packing & unpacking them and use shrink wrap to keep them securely closed.
- Photograph electrical cable setups with your phone, so you know what goes where on your TV or computer when you come to set it back up.
- Wrap hanging clothes in unused bin liners. This will keep the dust off, and make them easier and quicker to transport.
- Stack paper or polystyrene plates between your crockery to avoid breakages.
- Open toiletries and cling film the top, then put the lid back on. Avoid any messy spillages!
- Keep small parts like screws in a sandwich bag. Label the contents, or tape to the larger item they belong to.
- Vacuum pack spare duvets, out of season clothing and spare bedding to save space.
- Wrap furniture in old sheets, towels or blankets. It will protect both the furniture itself, and the walls of your new home.
- Use toilet paper rolls to organize cables.
- Pack heavy items in suitcases so you can make use of their sturdy handles and wheels!
Relieve Stress Close To The Move:
In the few weeks before you move, things become more urgent which can make stress levels shoot up. Stay calm by preparing and getting ahead of the rush if you can. It’s also useful to take care of yourself emotionally by planning ahead, so take a look at our suggestions for a cool and collected time pre-moving:
- Photograph energy meter readings so you don’t forget or lose them.
- List places to change your address so you don’t forget any, and call them early if you have a firm moving date.
- Defrost the fridge/freezer a day before moving.
- Make arrangements for young children and pets to be elsewhere on moving day if possible, so they are safe and happy whilst you move furniture in and out.
- Plan a treat to look forward to. This will help ease the feelings of sadness or discomfort about leaving your previous home behind.
Minimise Stress Settling In:
Even once you’ve finally got the keys to the front door, you may still feel pressure, unrest and unease. These tips will help you settle in and feel at home:
- Celebrate! Mark the occasion, and take a moment out of the chaos to create a happy memory to look back on.
- Unpack room by room to make the task feel more manageable.
- Work on your key living areas first. Get the rooms where you plan to spend most of your time straight first, then you can start to enjoy your new home.
- Get groceries delivered. If you’re busy, a food delivery is convenient and can give you more time to spend unpacking.
- Get into a routine to help you, and those around you feel settled.
- Arrange your wardrobe early, so you don’t have to search for items of clothing.
- Recreate familiar sights or sounds by unpacking favourite items to make you feel at home.
- Prioritise children’s rooms to give them a comfortable place they can enjoy.
- Make it smell nice with candles or cooking. Distinct smells of home access your emotions, & make you feel more settled.
Stress Free Ways To Get Things Looking Good:
Getting in to your new home and feeling relatively settled is one thing, but getting rooms how you actually want them can be a whole other ball game. Here are some hacks to make your interior look great sooner rather than later:
- Clear the space before you start positioning furniture.
- Measure & plan first to save energy wasted by moving things twice.
- Place the largest furniture first, facing the rooms focal point.
- Arrange furniture first before hanging artwork or mirrors.
- Remove dents left in the carpet by previous furniture with ice. Let it melt, then lift up the fibers with a fork when dry if needed.
When you’re placing furniture, try to make sure your internal doors can still open fully and you’re not blocking any high traffic areas or patio doors off. Top interior stylists suggest that you shouldn’t place all furniture against the walls either, so think about how to use the space effectively.
Ultimately, moving house isn’t just a physical thing. You’re letting go of your familiar surroundings and everything that makes you feel comfortable. If you’re moving a whole family, it’s likely that you’ll all feel unsettled for a while and the stress levels of those around you will influence your own.
Every little thing you can do to make the process less stressful will help you to deal with the situation at hand a little better. If you’ve got your finances in order, a support network of professionals to help you and everything is well planned and organised, you will have more resource to deal with your own, or other’s emotional stress.
Ultimately, once you’ve processed and dealt with the most difficult aspects of moving house, you can move on to enjoying your new surroundings more quickly.
Good luck with your move, and most of all, enjoy your new home 🙂