It’s that time. We’re looking for a new house! In a market that is extremely fast paced and seller oriented. Houses are listed on Thursday and are pending by Monday, for 20-25k over asking price. Wish we were sellers instead of buyers!
We live near Seattle, WA and have a 2.5 year old son and 4 month old daughter. We don’t have family anywhere nearby, and we’ve maxed out our friends for watching the kids. That said, there are still 6 homes the realtor wants to show us this weekend. What do we do?
Top 5 Tips for House Hunting with Kids –
5. Talk to your kids about house hunting. Clearly my 4 month old will do what she will. However, my 2 year old may understand ‘these are not our homes’ and ‘just look; don’t touch’. He knows to stop and take his shoes off at the door. Will he remember these rules? Probably not… but it’s worth the conversation to try!
4. Get creative. ‘Explore’ each house. ‘Oh, D, what do you think is in this closet?’ Make a game out of what spaces you can find. I let him climb the stairs, and challenged him to climb them 5 times in a row (this was during a conversation with our realtor). I also packed a kid’s flashlight in the diaper bag to help him ‘explore’ the house.
3. Don’t hesitate to use bribery! Haha, some of you will disagree but it was a necessity in my book. M&M’s? Check. Pretzels? Check. Ice cream stop? Check… just make snacks a treat for the car. I didn’t want D walking around the prospective homes with chocolate covered hands.
2. Be flexible.You are stressed, rushed, nervous and tired. This is not a good combination. Be flexible. Take a deep breath. Remember they are kids and will need exercise (highly suggest stopping by one of the neighborhood playgrounds if you can fit it in… also helps you get to know the potential neighbors). Remember they will get antsy and tired. They will interrupt your conversations. They are kids… be flexible.
1. Don’t take the kids house hunting! Haha, after all that, still drop them off with friends if you can. In fact, it may be worth making new friends if you’ve maxed out your welcome with current friends. I love my kids but not having them allowed me to actually house hunt… an amazing concept!