Moving with children: when is the right time?

Moving with children: when is the right time?

More employees are being relocated by companies today than has ever previously been the case in the whole of recorded history.  Indeed, with many of the new companies that are formed today, new employees often start out their career with the full understanding that that it is very likely that they will be asked to move at some point in the future.

Given that today’s corporate environment is so very competitive, with many applicants in demand because of their highly technical skills, companies try to sweeten this deal by offering a number of benefits.  Such firms now go well beyond the courtesies of paying for relocation expenses and the like, and have realized that people need to be able to strike a happy balance between work and home life. They are now even helping their transferring employees’ partners to find new work, locate quality education for their children, and providing other benefits intended to help to ease the transition and to make sure that the job satisfaction of their employees stays at a high level.

Although finding good schools for children is a crucial part of the moving process, the fact that many of these transfers can be rather last minute at times makes it hard to look at the emotional requirements of children in the event of moving.  The moment that the transfer is accepted, the stress begins.  In many instances, the employee who is being transferred will set up in the new hometown of his or her family for a set period, with the rest of the family to join them later. This is often because parents wish for their children to be able to finish the current school year instead of uprooting them in the middle of the year.  This temporary breaking up of the family creates stress on both the partner who is left behind and on the children, especially if they are very young.

A number of moving specialists have started to question whether the relocation should really wait until the summer after all.  In recent years, the summer vacation has been shortened and many school districts have started pushing toward all-year education, with educators arguing for more frequent but shorter breaks rather than a lengthy break in the summer. This situation cuts down the window break time that is available for families to be able to move.  Many families who move during the summer can also find that the other families who live in their new neighborhoods are off traveling, which cuts down the chances that the children will be able to meet new friends and increases their chances of growing bored and more worried about the relocation.

It is always a good idea to plunge children into new activities once they arrive in their new hometown, as this reduces the chance of them becoming lonely.  Moving midyear has the effect of instantly introducing them to other children of their own age.

Lance Grooms