The Stress of Relocating and How to Avoid Some of the Causes


Relocating to a new home is exciting. It’s also scary. In fact, there are a lot of adjectives you could use to name the emotions that come with moving home. But of all of them, there’s one that usually comes to people’s minds first. In fact, it’s often the only thing that people consider. What are the words I usually hear when people talk about an impending move, or even a past one?

Stress. Stressful. Stressed. If the stem of the word is ‘stress’, people are going to use it to describe a move. This goes double if the move is abroad.

This is a problem. Yes, a move is going to be at least a little stressful. But does it really need to be the core emotion that describes the entire process? I say it can largely be avoided. If you’re going to be moving home soon, you should check this article out. It will help you approach the process in a way that reduces stress.


The Problem with Stress

You may have heard a lot about the health effects of stress. Of course, you may also be wondering how important such concerns will be when it comes to moving house. After all, much of the stress is going to be unavoidable. And it’s not as if you’re going to be moving house forever, is it? It’s a temporary phase of your life. Why put too much focus on reducing the stress of it all? If long-term health effects of stress are caused by prolonged exposure to stress… Then why worry about it too much now?

The fact is that stress, even in the short-term, is going to present problems. Thankfully, it won’t have lasting health effects unless it’s part of an ongoing battle with chronic stress. But you do need to think about the short-term. When you feel more stressed, the whole process feels more unpleasant and complex than it actually is. You start to develop negative associations with the process of moving.


Moving away from one home to another is a bittersweet experience. In my opinion, it’s important to allow these feelings to be processed properly. Sure, saying goodbye to a home is a sad experience. But you’ll also find yourself reflecting on a lot of the good times that have occurred here. Why let that experience be tainted by mind-boggling stress? And what about the place you’re moving into? The experience of first stepping into your new home should be a memory to be cherished. It’s something you’re going to remember in the coming years. You want that to be a positive memory, right? You don’t want to remember feeling stressed, angry, and overwhelmed. You want to pay attention to your new home, not to negative feelings.

Doing Things in Advance

A lot of the stress of a move has to do with how last-minute everything becomes. So the simplest and most effective advice I have for you here is to plan ahead. Once you know you’re going to be moving out, it’s time to get out some pen and paper and start listing what you need to do. Preparation is the key to success in pretty much any endeavor.


You shouldn’t only be thinking about the tasks you need to complete within your home. You also need to think about the external help you’re going to require. Some people will have access to everything they need to complete a move. But if you need to rent a vehicle or arrange help from this moving company, then that needs to be included in your plans. The most last-minute you start arranging these things, the harder they become to sort out. Companies like this are often very busy and work to a tight schedule. Make sure you’re on it before you have to start paying premium prices to move on your desired date!

Articles featuring advice on how to move often tell you to pack up everything well in advance. But there’s an obvious problem with this advice if you take it to its logical conclusion. You end up packing things that you’re going to need during your stay in the house! Of course, because of this problem, a lot of people will simply leave packing till the final week or so. Again, this isn’t really recommended. The trick is to identify precisely what it is you’re going to need in the final weeks of your residence in this home.


Clothes are an obvious example (though the next section will outline the potential dangers of this conclusion!). Slightly less obvious is cleaning products. Once you’ve moved all of your stuff out of the home, that’s when you should start giving it a thorough deep clean. So don’t pack up your cleaning supplies. They’re probably the final thing you’re going to need in this home!

Underestimating Tasks

Another problem when it comes to moving: people often underestimate certain tasks. They don’t plan ahead, and so end up thinking some tasks will take a short time. When those tasks end up taking a long time, they’re surprised and frustrated. You don’t need to put yourself through that!

The first thing that jumps to my mind is clothes. Clothes are something you’ll need right up to the final day you’re at the house. To some, this translates into “don’t bother packing any of your clothes”. But clothes make up a huge amount of your overall belongings. People often think that clothes are going to be the easiest things to pack away. They’re light, they fold, you can put them pretty much anywhere. All of that is true. But packing away clothes is often a much more involved process than people make it out to be.


This is primarily because we often have way more clothes than we actually need. Of course, this can probably be said about the vast majority of our belongings. You know, unless you’re a minimalist kind of person. I’m not saying you should only have a strict amount of clothes equal to the number of days in the week or something. But you’re basically guaranteed to stumble upon so many clothes that you haven’t worn in ages. You may even have forgotten you have them. So it’s not so much that you have so many clothes. It’s more that you have even more clothes than you thought you did!

This is why you should take care to make a list of all the tasks you need to do. You need to assess each task realistically for their difficulty. Again, just assuming that the clothes will be the easiest things to pack away is a big mistake. You should then work away at the most time-consuming tasks first. Decluttering clothes is definitely one of those! Figuring out what clothes you want to mend, give away, or throw away takes time. But these decluttering tasks are essential if you want to make sure

Times and Deadlines

The chances are high that you’re going to have a lot of time arrangements that you need to juggle. Unfortunately, the times by which you need to have things done aren’t always in your control. If you’re lucky, there won’t be any need for you to move out of the property by a strict, early time. But if you do need to be out of the property by a set time – this is quite common – then this might create some difficulties.


The reason for such a difficulty is people often have to move out and move in on the same day. They need to be out of the property by, say, 12 p.m. But the property you’re moving into may only be available from 9 a.m. on that same day. This, of course, creates a problem. You’ve suddenly got a very strict timeframe in which to do all that moving.

The hope is that the landlord of your current property isn’t so strict about the need to move out. But it’s possible that their hands are tied. This could be the result of them arranging to have their new tenants be able to move in by a given time on that same day. This is a fault on their part, but it’s not always something you can avoid.


The best way to try to avoid these types of situations is by arranging some sort of flexibility with both landlords. They’re both probably capable of empathizing with how complex and time-consuming this process is. But for many people it still works out like this. The main reason is that we don’t want to pay double rents.

Paying double rent is something that some people do in order to secure a property, or to allow for more flexibility when moving. Basically, it has you paying rent on the new property, so that you’re already the tenants before you’ve even moved in. This gives you all the time you want between the first rent payments and the moving out date of the previous home. To be honest, it’s definitely the most effective way of reducing the stress of the whole process. But is it worth it? It is, of course, the most expensive option. I’d recommend trying to achieve more flexibility with the landlords.

Have you dealt with the stress of relocating? Share your helpful tips in the comments below!

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