Moving house is traditionally seen as one of the most stressful ventures in a person’s life. Couple that with Christmas, what’s meant to be a jolly time of year, could be a recipe for disaster. That is if you don’t have a good plan up your sleeve!
Moving before Christmas
The thought of moving before Christmas and enjoying the festive period in your new home is something many people dream about. And it’s something which is possible and doesn’t have to be stressful! Just like any house move, planning is essential. Arranging Christmas decorations into separate boxes and buying a tree in advance are both good ways to make sure your Christmas decorations are easy to unpack and decorate your house with. Storing your year-round ornaments and photo frames in a separate box means you can keep them to one side and unpack them after the Christmas period.
If you prefer having a real tree rather than an artificial one, a small table top tree is a great way to enjoy a real tree without the worry of moving a six-foot tree, or to save you from a last-minute scramble to find one! These are also easy to decorate as they don’t require a lot of baubles or lights.
If, like Cliff Richard, you want to put logs on the fire, it is essential that the fireplace has been recently swept. Go back to the house to check the condition of the fireplace and ask the vendors when the last time they had the chimney swept. Booking the chimney sweeper before you move in means the fireplace will be ready to use. Additionally, if the property is powered by oil, make sure there is enough fuel in the tank to see you through the winter months.
Also check for any potential problems with lighting and electrics. Avoid the added stress of having to rush to the shops because of faulty fairy lights by checking these before you pack. The simple and quick job of plugging your lights in and checking they all work could save you a nasty last-minute shock. If you are a keen Christmas shopper then you may have already bought all your presents, if so make sure these can’t be seen by someone when packing or unpacking!
And if you have time, wrapping your presents up early before the move will make sure no surprises are ruined if your children go on a hunt for presents! Try and collate your presents into the same boxes and make sure any valuable presents are safely wrapped in bubble wrap.
For children, Christmas is a very exciting time and a house move may add to this heightened level. A move around Christmas is stressful enough so we would advise letting a family member take them shopping or to visit the Christmas festivities that are going on at this time of year, whilst you move. This welcome distraction will allow you to get on with the move without having over excitable children running around.
Spending your first Christmas in your new home creates a magical cosy experience and one that your family will cherish for years to come, and we are here for you to help your move go smoothly.
Moving after Christmas
If you’re moving home after Christmas, you can still have Christmas decorations, without having to worry about added stress! Try to keep the decorations to a minimum rather than turning your home into Santa’s grotto. Keep boxes aside specifically for decorations so they can be easily packed away. If you own an artificial tree, keep the original box so it can easily be stored away in the new home too. You should never under estimate just how much you have, so keeping decorations short and minimal won’t add to the pressures of packing!
It is a good idea to plan Christmas dinner and the need to use kitchen appliances, crockery and glasses. If you can’t talk your way into going to a relative’s house for Christmas dinner, you could suggest that visitors help with the cooking by bringing pre-cooked roasties, stuffing or veg to reduce the workload – and the washing up! Alternatively, for more peace of mind you can book a family meal out.
Only use rooms which you use day to day and use spare rooms, such as extra reception rooms or a study, for storage. That way you can pack things away whilst making space for Christmas decorations. Packing over the space of a few weeks and using spare rooms or the garage for storage will also help relieve the stress of packing. If it is possible, you could even ask your kids to room-share for a few nights, so you have extra rooms for storage.
If you have been good this year you may expect to receive a sack full of presents. If you have a house move planned for after Christmas, keep the packaging they came in to make it easier to pack away and store. Or if you have the self-control, avoid getting your gifts out the packaging completely and start storing them away to avoid them getting lost or damaged.