From finding the right school to choosing the best property, here’s how to ace your relocation.
Relocating to a new city is both a daunting challenge and exciting possibility. From ensuring your kids get a place at the best school in town to finding a home that’s within easy reach of the office, it’s a delicate balancing act. With research for Booking.com showing that 76 per cent of relocating employees are given less than 60 days to move, time is of the essence. That’s why it pays to get expert advice. “We take a very detailed brief before people relocate to try and understand what type of people they are,” explains Penny Mosgrove, CEO of Quintessentially Estates. This involves learning about their interests and assessing where they currently live to get a better handle of where would be the best place for them to relocate. “For instance, if they live in Central or Sheung Wan in Hong Kong, then we know that’s very similar to South Kensington or Mayfair in London,” says Mosgrove. “We then go off and search and try and find what they’re looking for, providing options, commentary, and recommendations on property, schools and transport to work.” Quintessentially Estates offers clients the option to buy or rent a property, depending on their needs. However, Mosgrove advises that the location of a new home should be led by where children will go to school once the move is complete. “If, for example, they’re relocating to London and say ‘I really want my kid to go to the American School,’ they have to live in St John’s Wood,” she says.
Jess Harris, Head of Quintessentially Education, says that it’s all about assessing the needs of the whole family when relocating. “One of the first things we need to look at for relocation is ages and stages the family might be at,” she says. “Coming into the UK, for example, there are very natural transition points. Schools take entries at ages seven, eight, 11, 13, and 16.” However, Harris says that transitioning during critical exam periods can be more challenging; therefore, it’s vital to try to time a relocation to make it as easy as possible for children.
“Understanding the whole family picture and thinking about transitions are two of the most important things when considering relocation.” With that in mind, Harris advises honest and open conversations with children about the reasons for the move, with the aim of minimizing any stress or disruption. "I think children are often more amenable than we give them credit for. There’s a huge degree of adaptability, especially among younger children.” She says that keeping the regularity of routine is vital to make sure children feel secure once you’ve moved.
Once you’re in, getting settled in a new city and job can be tough. Quintessentially Estates offers full property management services to try and take the stress out of the day–to–day tasks, leaving you free to attend language classes, if needed, or spend time socialising with new colleagues. “These houses need a huge amount of maintenance to keep them going, and that’s where we come in to help with,” says Mosgrove. This includes everything from the weekly food shop to taking care of essential repairs.
When the move is complete, and the kids are at school, it’s all about putting yourself out there. Spend time researching your new area, go for drinks with new workmates, and invite your kids’ friends over. The more you socialise, the more your new location will feel like home. And if you’ve got a year-long contract, remember that home is only a few months away.
A relocation can be daunting. Enlist the help of your luxury lifestyle manager, who can point you in the proper direction.