Family Magazine

Tips for a Successful Relocation

By Bloggerfather @bloggerfather
We're moving soon, so this guest post really means a lot. At the end of the post, I'll include the helpful relocation checklist Matt has created. Matt is a 28 year old engineer now living in Houston, TX with his wife and 2 year old son. His second son is due in mid-November. In Matt's free time, he's building a course aimed for young male professionals, who wish to advance both their career and family life simultaneously. Sign up to get free tools to be a better father at

I am in the midst of accomplishing one of my more admirable feats in my 28 years: relocating my family to a new city within a 4 month window.
I flew back to Dallas knowing we had the opportunity to move to Houston.
I was confident I would get the job there, but I didn't know how hard it would be to get us there.
Working in power generation, I knew the move to Houston was inevitable; I just didn't think it would happen now. A few days later, the offer letter was negotiated and I gave the hiring manager the green light.
At the time we accepted the offer, my wife was 5 months pregnant. That means within 4 months, we needed to sell our house, find and close on a new house, make the final move and get set up with a new doctor.
Factor in that we have a 22 month-old as well. H.e.l.p.
Well, as I type this, we are staying with my in-laws (luckily they live in Houston), and we are closing on our new place Sept 30th.
The timing of the new job was not good, however, I was confident we could make the transition happen in the 4 month window allotted. Luckily, the Texas housing market is red-hot (one of the main reasons we gave it a go). I knew we could sell fast and I had my fingers crossed we could find a house we liked.
Well, we sold the house for a profit and we're under contract for a great house in a nice neighborhood in Houston.
I wanted to relay a few tips to the fathers out there who may have to relocate their families at some point:
  • If you are moving to a different city, make the trips to and from as easy as possible. This means, plan the hell out of your trips. You will likely be making 5-6 trips to your new city to find a house, condo, or whatever. The trips to and from set the tone for how your stay will be. Wake up earlier than everyone else, get the car loaded, bring snacks for everyone, get some good music going, and know where you are going to stay at least a week in advance.
  • If you are driving, take care of your vehicle. The miles you put on your vehicle will add up quickly. You will want to defer car maintenance because ultimately there are more important things to do. Get an oil change, rotate the tires, and have your mechanic do a point check on your car to make sure all is well. The last thing you want is a broken down car during home tours or a hefty bill down the road due to deferred maintenance.
  • Get a damn good realtor. This is probably the most important and frustrating of them all. Interview at least 5. At least 5. In the Houston market, houses would sell within 1 day in some neighborhoods, so we needed someone incredibly proactive. We would not be able to view every house that came on the market, so we needed someone who would go check them out for us and report back the results.
  • Find a few fun things to do in both cities during the transition period. When you get back to your original city, you'll drive by restaurants, attractions, parks etc that you never tried while living there. To take a break from all of the stress and emotion that goes with moving, take your family to that restaurant or go to the museum you never went to. Buy a couple Groupons or LivingSocial deals in your new city as well. This will help you and your family become more acclimated and have some fun in your new city.
  • Eat healthy. You'll want to grab a burger while you're house hunting. That's ok, just don't do it every day. Also, once you know that you're moving, you'll buy less groceries at your old house because you know you're leaving soon. That means you'll likely eat out more. Watch what you eat.
  • Try to sleep as much as possible. There will be sleepless nights. You and/or your wife will be stressed, which will impact your sleeping routine. Take a walk after dinner or take a warm bath before bed to relax you.
  • Get up an hour earlier than the rest of your family. I did just say to sleep as much as possible, but try getting up at least an hour before everyone else. The extra time you have in the morning will set the tone for the rest of the day. You'll have time to plan out the day and get a head start on what needs to get done. When you buy and sell a house, there's a lot of tedious paperwork, emailing, etc. Knock these out early.
  • Say one nice thing a day to your wife for no reason at all. Pay very close attention to your wife's feelings during this time, especially if she's pregnant! Emotions will be flying high, so a little kindness will go a long way. Don't make it too obvious though!
  • Check out the checklist below, that helps remind you what you need to switch over after you make your move.

1. Have you forwarded your mail to your new address?
Use this form (
2. Have you cancelled, transferred or newly activated these utilities?
  • Electricity provider
  • Natural Gas provider
  • Water provider
  • Trash Pick­up

3. Have you updates your rates and changed your address for these items?
  • Car Insurance
  • Home Insurance
  • Valuable Property Insurance (high value jewelry etc)
  • TV service
  • Internet service

4. Have you changed your address for these items?
  • Cell Phone provider
  • Credit Cards
  • Driver's License
  • Anything else you receive bills for

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