7 Tips to Make Finding the Right Home Fun for the Whole Family
As your family grows, your home needs grow along with it. But, should finding a new home be a family affair?
On one hand, moving is stressful enough without involving your children in the search. But on the other hand, bringing kids along can help them make a smoother transition, especially if the move means a relocation and changing schools. Participating in the process can give children a sense of ownership and get them excited about the move. It may even help relieve some of their own stress and anxiety about moving.
Here are some helpful tips to make house hunting with kids not only bearable, but fun for the whole family.
Start with an internet search. Browse the web for homes listed for sale in the city where you are looking. Ask your children to give their input and feedback on the homes you see. Doing so can reduce their frustration and help them feel like part of the decision-making process.
Pick and choose which houses they tour. The initial search can be overwhelming, even for children. Your kids may find it easy to get attached to a home that just isn’t right for your family, and breaking that attachment can be emotional. Narrow down your options to a handful — even just a couple — of homes that suit your needs and budget before bringing the kids along with you.
Give each child a house hunting job. Giving your children a responsibility in the house hunt will help them remember the homes you visit and feel more included. Taking notes on the properties or snapping pictures of favorite features of each home are a few jobs your kids might enjoy. Older kids may enjoy doing some research on the new town or neighborhood and reporting back to the family.
Make it a family event. Are you relocating out of town? Plan a family road trip or vacation to your new city and include looking at a few homes in your trip itinerary. While you’re there, take time to explore some hot spots and attractions in your new city. Dine at a local restaurant. Stop and play at a neighborhood park. Drive by the school. Browse the city library. Create opportunities for your child to envision him or herself living in this new town.
Ask for their opinion. Allow each child to write out a wish list of three to five features they’d like to see in your new home. Of course, be sure to explain that it may not be possible for one house to have everything. But giving your children room to express their desires and opinions of the houses you’ve looked at can go a long way in helping them feel involved in the process.
Pay attention to your child’s emotions and behaviors. Some children may be too stressed out by the idea of moving to engage in the house hunting process, and that’s OK. Every child is different. Involve your children in the process as much as you feel is appropriate for their age and feelings about the move.
Know your child’s limits. No child will have the same attention span and focus for house hunting as adults. For this reason, if you want to involve your children in the search, plan accordingly. Will you need to limit your hunt to no more than two or three houses in a day? Can your child withstand a full day of touring homes as long as there are breaks along the way? Keep snacks in the car and know when your child needs to take a break. If you’re in a hurry on a particular day, consider dropping the kids off with a babysitter before you head out to look at homes.
House hunting with children isn’t an impossible task, but getting creative with your search can help take the stress out of it for the whole family. Are you planning a move? Let PrimeLending make the lending process as stress-free as possible. Contact us today to help you get started on the road to buying the home of your family’s dreams.