Looking for any new property to call home is a daunting experience especially it’s your first house/flat away from your parents. Imagine adding to that feeling a whole bunch of anxiety. I felt so much anxiety when I was told I would have to move out of the house I’d loved in for 19 years (it was a council property).
It was such a weird jumble of emotions that I felt looking around different flats in my area. I was excited to be having a little place of my own where I could start afresh. It was also super sad because I’d moved into my old place with both my parents and cat and was the only one alive to move out.
If you suffer with anxiety then you know how many thoughts go through your head before you move:
What if moving is the wrong thing to do?
Is this new place safe?
What if my new neighbours are noisy/trouble?
How will I be able to move everything out and then in?
What happens if something needs repaired?
I know these questions could probably easily answered by someone but these still went through my head. This was the first place I’d move to on my own and, having no family or friends to help me, I had to move with the help of a tenancy support officer. Before I had to move, I was told to come up some things I wanted to consider before choosing a place to live.
check the crime around the area
This probably isn’t the best advice for anyone that is paranoid but sometimes checking the areas you’re wanting to move to helps give you peace of mind. I’ve used a site called Police UK to look at my local neighbourhoods and see what crime has been reported over the last few months. You can put in a postcode and it will give you the general area.
You can also see numbers on the map and see what types of crime are being committed. It’s not great some of the time when you see a thing like Violence/Sexual Offence because that’s terrifying! It’s more broader than that. It just gives you a idea!
make a list of everything you want to pack
When you’re moving to a new property, all hell breaks loose when everything is packed into boxes and you have no clue where all the basic essentials are. Before I moved, I started making a list of which box would contain what. I colour-coded too because I’m that weird and love colours. When I saw that colour on the box, I’d know what room to pop it into.
Think about making a first night box. In the box you can have all the small items you think you’ll need and don’t want to spend hours looking in boxes for. You could have medication, tea-bags/coffees, toothbrush and toothpaste, fresh pillow-case, knives and forks…whatever you think will be important!
If you know your mental health will be affected by the move, even keep some meds in your bag to take just in case.
Secure your new property before you move in
This was such a vital thing for me! I was so scared my first night because I heard some of my neighbours arguing and, a month later, another being attacked by her sister. If I hadn’t had some general bits to make me feel secure, I wouldn’t have moved in as quickly as I did. I’ve heard chain bars are great for some homes because a burglar wouldn’t find it as easy to cut like a door-chain.
I’m hoping to get a Ring doorbell and camera on my front door to help me feel safe. When someone rings it, you can see through the camera on your phone so you know who is there and talk to them. There are so many different things you can get with Ring like a spotlight with a camera and more. It’s a great company for anyone who finds it difficult to answer the front door especially if you’re expecting anyone.
What mental health things would you consider when moving to a new property?