Moving house can be challenging enough, but add a new baby into the mix and things can feel really stressful. So what's it like, and what are some top tips to make it easier?
Tips for moving house with a baby
Use a professional removal company
Using a professional removal company saves you a lot of time. Typically a moving company can move the average 3 bedroom house in day, meaning the amount of time you're disrupted is kept to a minimum.
Having professional movers do the physical work also means that you can focus your time on your little one, which most new parents know can be all consuming, without needing to figure out how to also lift boxes and get a car seat into a van. You'll also save a lot of energy! Moving house is physically hard work and the last thing you need to be is physically exhausted as well as sleep deprived!
Get help with packing
If you're using a professional removal company then ask them to provide packing services. This means you won't need to find lots of time in the run up to the move to get everything packed, and also means you won't have to live amongst the boxes for too long. Typically the movers will come in and do all the packing on the same day as your move, or the day before if there is lots to be done. They will provide all the packing materials and pack everything carefully to reduce the risk of any damage.
You can choose to have everything packed for you, or just some of your items like fragiles if you just want a bit of help.
If you are moving yourself ask friends and family if they can help you with the packing, or help take care of the baby for a little while whilst you spend some time getting everything packed up.
Handyman services can also be a big help getting prepared for move day - ask your removal company or a local handyman if they can help with things like dismantling beds or large furniture, taking down trampolines and swing-sets or even taking down curtain poles and picture frames.
Get help with unpacking and getting set up
Many removal companies offer unpacking services too. This can really help speed up the process of getting settled in to your new home.
Handyman services are also great for helping you get set up - ask your removal company or local handyman for extra help with putting back together anything you dismantled to move, hanging pictures and curtains/blinds, putting together new furniture for the baby that you've bought etc. This will really help save you time and create a comfortable and relaxing new home for you all to settle into to minimise disruption for the baby.
Consider temporary storage if you can't move in right away
If you're not moving directly into your new home then it's a good idea to arrange storage for your belongings whilst you're in alternative accommodation. Many removal companies offer their own storage services for moving house or you can look at local self store facilities.
If you're using a removal company then look for those that offer wooden container storage or steel container storage that is loaded directly onto their vehicle at your home. This reduces the risk of damage through extra handling. Find out more about Moving House storage.
What's it like moving house with a new baby?
We asked one of our customers how they found the experience of moving house with a new baby and here is their story.
Martin and his partner Amberley were hoping to get their move completed before their first child was born, but lots of delays and issues meant that wouldn't be the case and instead had to move when Tod was 3 months old. They moved from their first home, a 1 bedroom flat in Tunbridge Wells, to a more appropriate family sized 3 bedroom home with a garden a little further outside of the town.
What has the move been like for you?
"The move process was drawn out and stressful.
We were the start of what turned out to be a fairly long chain so it took a while before all parties were ready to go and then our buyer pulled out at the last minute. Amberley had just given birth to our first child when we found out this news! A new build property developer finally came in to purchase our property and get the chain moving, but with all the stipulations they required it seemed an age to get to the point of exchange.
One thing I have learnt is that if solicitors could join the 21st century and communicate over the phone and via email rather than sending letter by post and carrier pigeon things would happen far quicker!"
At what point were you able to start thinking about the physical move, what options were you looking into for doing the move?
"Due to the previous buyer pulling out we were only confident that the move was going to happen once we had exchanged contracts. For us this allowed just short of 2 weeks until our completion date. Rather than moving direct it suited my partner and I to move out prior to the completion date and following a discussion with Bournes whom we already had a some goods in storage with they were able to be flexible to my requirements.
Because I’d need more storage, but only on a temporary basis for a couple of days before moving into the new house, Bournes were able to transfer my goods from a wooden storage container to a larger steel container which could be loaded onto one of their lorry’s and bought to my flat to add the things from there and then offload it from the vehicle in their storage facility before re-loading it on the lorry a few days later and bringing to the new house, without having to handle it all a third time."
This move involved a short period of temporary storage so Bournes used one of their vehicles that allows a steel container to be lifted on for loading, off for storage at our secure warehouse and then back on for delivery without requiring additional handling.
How was the packing process for you?
"Even though I have some experience packing to move house, I was surprised myself how long it took to pack. Not from the speed of my packing, but due to the volume of things we didn’t realise we had, other time constraints with my job and all those little things that seem to ‘crop up’ when you have a new baby, so it was a good job we decided to start packing early!! Living in a small flat also meant having packed and half packed boxes all over the place and in our way for a few days which was quite annoying too!
Should I have not known what I was doing I would have certainly had Bournes in to do the packing and in hindsight."
What were you most worried about with the physical move?
"I wasn’t too worried, I trusted the team. I guess my only concern was if I should have had them pack my fragile items but everything made it without a scratch".
How stressful did you find moving house with a new baby?
"Well I think we nearly doubled our box count with all the new stuff that was purchased for him! But in terms of the move process coming from a one bed flat it made it more important to us that the move went through and all the more frustrating and worrying when there were delays, but during the stressful times you only had to look at him to put a smile back on your face!"
What are you looking forward to most about your new home?
"We were living in a one bedroom flat with a view of the car park and we have moved to a 3 bed house with a beautiful view but without doubt I am most looking forward to being able to provide my son with his own room!"
And finally, any top tips for any of the moving process or for moving house with a new baby?
"Be aware that things don’t always go to plan, some of the additional options Bournes provide like cancellation protection mean that whilst your worrying about your move falling through for a whole lot of other reasons (like my son outgrowing his moses basket!!) you don’t have to worry about financial costs of cancellation charges for your removal company, it’s a small fee but a big weight off your shoulders.
If you’re doing your own packing, start early! Carefully evaluate the extra cost of having your packing done for you, if it’s an affordable luxury, go for it – you won’t regret it!
And my top tip?....Stand at least arm’s length away from your partner before telling her your buyer has pulled out just after she’s given birth…"