You’re dusting off old shoeboxes filled with childhood relics. Struggling to find a new purpose for their childhood bedroom. You’ll never be fully prepared for the day your kid moves out.
Whether you’re feeling relieved, terrified, or a mix of both, helping your kid move out is a universally difficult experience—and you’re not alone.
From student movers to post-grads, everyone needs help
You might already give the best advice in the world, but it can feel like you’re talking to a brick wall. We believe there’s always a better approach to helping out your kids. It just takes some time and patience—and so will adjusting to a home without your kid.
Before you pass on wisdom to (AKA lecture) your young adult, consider these tips for making the transition easier for both of you.
1. Help them budget
It’s tempting to tell your kid to save every penny and funnel everything into retirement. You want the best for them, but you don’t want them to live in total squalor, do you?
Even if your kid is street-smart and good with money, they can still benefit from some guidance. Help them set realistic savings goals and build a budget that fits their lifestyle. They need to know that there’s no single “right way” to budget and that researching different approaches will benefit them in the long run.
Keep in mind: if you want your kid to take your wisdom seriously, you need to take the emotion out of this discussion. Put all your worries aside and interview them as though you’re a financial advisor. You can start with questions like:
- What spending categories will govern your budget?
- Do you plan on keeping an emergency fund?
- What’s your contingency plan if you lose your income or get evicted?
Hear them out, listen to their reasoning, and advise where it’s necessary. They might not apply your advice right away (or even five years from now), but it’ll still live in the back of their minds. Someday, they’ll thank you for it.
2. Promote independence before their move
A critical part of this transition is helping your child achieve independence before they start living on their own. If they don’t already, they should start buying all their groceries, booking their health appointments, managing their bank accounts, etc. This level of self-sufficiency is the most basic requirement for moving away from home.
If they practice this several months before moving, living alone won’t be that major of a change. They will be more prepared to encounter unexpected problems on their own, and you’ll have more peace of mind.
3. Set rules & boundaries
Your kid never said that they’d be knocking on your door to ask for money two years from now. But it could happen.
You might have promised to take them in temporarily if they lose their apartment, but there’s no guarantee that you’ll be able to support them if they get fired from their job. What’s their contingency plan? How much money can they borrow in times of need?
Conversations like this are tough, but you have to have them. Clear expectations are important to maintain a healthy relationship with any adult—including and especially your child.
Expectation-setting isn’t just important for financial reasons. You’ll also have to negotiate the time you spend with each other. If you expect your kid to visit for every single holiday on the calendar, you might be disappointed. Decide early which important occasions are reasonable times for them to visit home, and how often they’ll be back for more casual visits.
4. Hire a professional moving company
Many people miss out on this seriously stress-relieving solution. You and your family already have a hundred little logistical details to sweat over. Not to mention all the double-checking to see if your kid’s packing list has everything it needs.
Consider finding local movers and packers to reduce your family’s workload. A moving company can pack boxes for you, and some even provide packing supplies. You might need more hands for large, heavy furniture or fragile items. Two Small Men with Big Hearts has movers in every province that can transport your kid’s belongings locally or across several provinces.
This advice might be a lot to consider, but it’s what you need to give your kid an easy, worry-free journey towards independence.
Is your kid ready to go? Help get their move started by getting a free moving estimate.