In a perfect world, you’d close on a home one day, and be ready to move into your new home the next. But the likelihood of those timeframes syncing up neatly? About as slim as that LED smart TV you can’t wait to hang in the family room.
But just because you’re in limbo doesn’t mean you can’t live well. Here’s 6 expert tips on how to live comfortably, and embrace the adventure, while you’re waiting for your new home to be built.
1. Treat the time like a ‘mini vacation’
This works especially well if you’re building a home in a city that is new to you and your family, says Teris Pantazes, the co-founder of EFynch.com, which is a homeowner and handyman community that serves the Mid-Atlantic area. The company offers a bidding system for homeowners to get bids on construction projects.
“Choose a modern apartment if you normally go with traditional homestyle,” says Pantazes. “Or spend a few months renting a home that might be slightly further away, but is on a river or lake, or in the mountains.”
The idea, Pantazes says, is minimize the impact of the move, but maximize the experience.
“One couple I knew built during the summer and the father rented a small room in the city right above his work,” Pantazes says. “His family used this as an opportunity to spend the summer in a beach house, and he worked extra long days to have 4-day weekends with his family the entire summer.”
2. Store your belongings with Closetbox
Whether you’re temporarily living with family members or leasing an apartment month-to-month while waiting for your new home to finish, you’ll likely be living in a smaller space. Let Closetbox help with the move by coming to pick up the items that you won’t need in your temporary digs. Closetbox will keep an inventory on your belongings and store them in one of their secure warehouses, and then deliver what you need to your new home when you’re ready.
3. Look for corporate housing
Moving into “corporate housing” has a couple of perks that are perfect when you’re waiting on a home build to finish. For starters, corporate housing apartments are typically furnished. (So, you could store a majority of your belongings — including furniture and appliances with Closetbox while you’re waiting to move into your new home and save yourself from the trouble of “moving twice.”) Also, corporate housing rentals tend to have some flexibility with leasing terms, so you can rent month-to-month rather than locking into a 6-month or year-long lease. So, how do you go about finding these rentals? You can start with your company’s HR department to see if they have any partners. Or, you can reverse engineer the process by checking the Professional Corporate Housing Providers online, a membership organization where you can find corporate rentals near your city. Also, check with your leasing agent to make sure you’re able to extend your lease. Even if you have a remarkable builder with a good track record, projects can run over, oftentimes because of inclement weather, explains Heather Lee Ferrill with Ferrill Construction in the Tampa Bay area of Florida.
4. Find a temporary home near your new home
Being as close to the project as possible will make it convenient should you need to answer any questions on your project, Ferrill says.
5. If you’ve got children, keep some consistency
“Bring along favorite toys, or maybe their bed, and anything that a child looks to for comfort,” suggests Marty Basher, a home organization expert at Modular Closets. When you’re selecting what will stay and what will go in storage, think of it as a “vacation-plus,” where you’re packing the essentials, but also some comforts to keep your temporary digs feel personal and comfortable.
6. Take advantage of meal delivery services
Without your full kitchen suite and a fully stocked pantry, it might be tempting to go out to eat or order takeout on a nightly basis. Instead of blowing your budget (and getting accustomed to huge restaurant portions), try a meal delivery service, which comes with all of the ingredients and spices you need to whip up a homemade meal. You’ve got a lot of meal services to choose from. To help narrow down your choices, check out the Sweet Phi blog post comparing the pros and cons of six different home meal delivery services.