by Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group
Prepare for the Worst, Hope for the Best
Moving is stressful—regardless of the situation, any time you have to pack up all your worldly belongings (read--old college papers, lamps you've been meaning to repair, kids’ art projects) and move them to a new house is overwhelming for even the most organized and positive among us. When you have landed your dream job—four states away--and your spouse will have to leave their career, when life has thrown you a big roadblock and you are more or less given no choice but to move, when living alone is no longer an option---you must manage a rollercoaster of emotional ups and downs at the same time as the anxiety of the actual move to El Paso.
One of the biggest stressors in moving is getting a handle on the whims of the real estate business. You're a successful adult, respected in your community, and your life is utterly at the mercy of some people you have never met--what if your residence does not sell when you want it to? Suppose the buyers buying your house find a different house that they like better? What if they demand you to leave the washer & dryer and the kids' swingset? What if the appraiser sees the crack in the foundation that's sort of hidden behind the hedge? What if the home inspector finds your new residence has a leaky roof or there is a new bowling alley and travel plaza projected for across the road from your new subdivision? Here is the truth. You have little authority over any of these things. The best thing is to make sure that the realtor helping with your house and the realtor helping you with the new residence are knowledgeable and do their jobs--and work with both to have a emergency plan should something unexpected happen.
Real estate transactions are like a long run of dominoes--closings usually depend on another closing happening on time. One blunder several steps up the line can mess up your buyers timeline, and a similar thing goes for the residence you're moving to—unforeseen glitch may mean you cannot close when you had planned, and you're up at night pondering how it's going to feel to be homeless for a few days, or if you might just move into one of the moving company’s trucks and set up camp.
Take a deep breath. One of the advantages of the recession is that real estate regulations have changed and there are not nearly as many last-minute surprises with your closings. You should discover any potential concerns well in advance of your closing date, and in case that something does fluctuate, moving companies are wonderfully used to working with changing time frames. If an issue does slow you down, you should have the alternative of moving in a few days before you actually close--again, a good realtor plans for contingencies, so you don't have to worry about them.
Touch base with your realtors and lender once a week leading up to your closing date to make sure all the inspections and repairs and other details are going as they should; keeping in the know provides you at least a feeling of control, and if there is a hiccup you're not caught unaware.
If something dreadful does happen, like if you're building and an out-of-stock supply has pushed back inspections and you don't have the occupancy certificate a few days ahead of closing because the plumbing is not completed, AND you've got a rock solid close on your old house and the movers are slammed, don't lose it. Most moving companies have temporary or long-term storage until you can get into your new home, and your realtor can help you find short-term housing until your residence is available. Issues like these are very common, but when they do crop up your stress levels skyrocket--so trust your team to help you deal with it.
The Emotional Stages of Moving
So, you are moving to El Paso--and it could be welcome, it may be a challenge. You might be moving three blocks or four hundred miles away. Everybody's scenario is different, but people are very much alike--the emotional rollercoaster just varies from residence to house. Some are kiddie sized, with happy Disney cars to ride in, and others mirror a death-defying, nausea-inducing Loch Ness monster. The accomplishment is to turn that roller coaster into a mellow ride with chipper little people humming "It's A Small World" as you sail through your closets.
Some researchers and psychologists have equated moving--in any situation--to the Kubler-Ross five stages of grief model. That is, you encounter denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and then acceptance.
When you have constructed a life in one place, it's totally standard to have regrets about moving from the house where you called home after your honeymoon, where you brought your kiddos home, where you commemorated all those birthdays and anniversaries. If your move is not an option but an essentiality, it's okay to get mad at the circumstances that have deposited you at the place where you're leaving your house because you have no other options. Be mad, shriek and holler at the walls and lean on your family and friends for support. Take some time trying to figure out how to not have to move—maybe your spouse could commute, or rent a crash pad in the new city; if you require assistance keeping up with your house, you might consider getting live in help. Thinking through your alternatives, as insane as they may be, helps you work through the reality of moving so that it's a bit less painful to accept it.
Then, you may spend several days or weeks in denial, of sorts. This is when your relatives ask if they can swing by and help you go through stuff, and you fabricate a little and say you're nearly done, when in actuality you have thrown out two dried up ink pens and one pair of those disposable pedicure flip flops and do not own a single box, yet. If you are really wrestling with the nitty gritty of purging and packing, allow your friends to assist. Or, ask your moving company to box things up for you—many full-service movers have professional packers who can either get you started or do the full job for you.
Finally, you will accept the transition and change. It may not be the moment the moving trucks get there, it could take several months. But the human spirit is a resilient thing and you will come to accept and embrace your new surroundings in El Paso. That is not to say it will be without angst, but being willing to making a new life and doing new activities can ease the nostalgia for your old residence and your old life.
The members of your family will all have similar feelings, although with different degrees of ferocity--teenagers’ reactions are going to be a tad more aggressive than that of a younger child. If you are moving from your family house for senior living because one spouse is not doing well, then the more active spouse may feel more anger and denial. The important thing is to remember that the emotional ups and downs are normal and it would be weird if you did not get sad or mad or a little upset during the process.
Keeping your move in perspective is key to getting to the new house in one piece. Your life is not contained in the brick and mortar of your old house, your life is in the memories you've made there. Keep in mind that you will not lose old friends, and that you will meet new ones. And one day soon, you'll open the front door and think to yourself, "I'm home."
Easing the Transition
Most people are intrenched in habits--even young children pick their cuddly stuffed animal and there’ll be a small catastrophe if it's nowhere to be found at nap time. So, when you move, you're most of the time giving up all your habits in place and even if you are pleased about the new house, the new life you've got to evolve around it is difficult to even the most even keel person. When you are moving and concerned about creating a new life for you and your family in El Paso, here are some ways to help with the transition.
Get your family enthusiastic about the relocation to El Paso. If this deciphers to agreeing that your teenage daughter can paint a life-size elephant on her wall, put a smile on your face and go purchase the paint. It could mean you finally have enough space for a dog—figure out what sort of dog you would like, and as soon as everything is unpacked, go to the local shelter and pick one out. While you are at it, adopt two dogs, as the only thing better than saving one life, is saving two. Let your boys set up tents and camp out in that big backyard. Yes, it's bribery of a sort, but it is all for the best and the delight of new privileges and besides, puppies are a surefire way to put a smile on everyone’s face. And, if you're the one having a hard time with it, seeing your family happy goes a long way to improving your state of mind.
When you're moving, the world-wide web (if you're older that phrase means something to you) makes the trip a lot easier. You possibly utilized real estate websites to find your new home and analyze schools and neighborhoods, so you have a decent perception already of your new bubble. Use social media to link up with people--towns of every size have mom groups that offer everything from pediatrician reviews to the best yoga classes--and do not forget that your new neighbors are great resources. A lot of neighborhoods have websites and online directories that tell you whose kids babysit, dog walk and rake leaves.
If you have children, getting them into new activities is a lot more vital to them than that orthodontist. Being able to jump right back into volleyball or piano lessons or dance keeps them active and helps them feel a part of their new surroundings-the last thing you want is to have pouting children around the home whining that they hate you and do not have anyone to hang out with. And here's a fun tidbit—studies show that moving in the middle of the school year can be easier on kids than moving over the summer break. If you start a new school at the beginning of the year it is easier to get looked over in the craziness of the new year , but when you come in in the middle of the school year, it's more possible your kids will find friends faster and get more interested in school.
The loss of a feeling of security can be a tough part of a move for the adults. When you are used to swinging into a neighbor's house just because it’s part of your routine, being in a new locality where you don't know anyone is tough. Remember that your new neighbors are most likely interested in getting to know you, because they've probably said goodbye to their drive-by buddies and are wanting to meet the new neighbors (aka – you!). Walking your dog is a good way to meet the neighbors--their eagerness to learn about you is high, and this provides you an easy way to meet everybody.
Many churches and synagogues have newcomers’ gatherings that welcome you and your family, and assist you to discover how you fit within that community. The majority of schools love volunteers, so think about getting involved. And, if you are a member of a national association such as Rotary or Junior League your membership transfer immediately brings you into a group.
Life changes are difficult, but by allowing yourself and your family the okay to be a little sad about the past will aid everyone embrace the future.
If you are planning a move, contact A-1 Freeman Moving Group to begin on your free in-home estimate. We promise to do our part to make your move to El Paso as smooth as possible.