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How to Survive Your Time Between Homes

Whether you’re building your dream home, moving to a new city, traveling for long periods of time, or transitioning between leases, you may find yourself in a “between time” situation where you need a place to stay. This is where temporary housing can come in handy. Short-term living arrangements can occasionally be stressful—after all, they’re not as comfortable as your home—but with a few simple tips, you can survive the time between homes in temporary housing!

Find the Right Temporary Home

Small apartment with living room and kitchen. Photo by Instagram user @d.signers

Photo via @d.signers

How long do you need a temporary home? What’s your budget? Will you need furniture? These are all things to consider when looking at options for short-term housing, such as extended stay hotels, month-to-month apartment rentals, and Airbnbs. Not sure where to start your search? There are plenty of helpful websites that can make finding a temporary place to live easier while you’re moving.

Bring Essentials Only

Young woman sitting in bedroom with suitcase. Photo by Instagram user @amtourister

Photo via @amtourister

It’s important to remember that this is a temporary living situation, so you most likely don’t need to take everything you own with you. Of course, depending on the short-term housing option you’ve chosen and how long you’re staying, you may need some furnishings or household items to get by. But in most cases, it’s best to stick to the essentials—things like toiletries, clothing, and electronic devices. The rest of your belongings can be stored in a temporary storage unit until you’re ready to move.

Set Up Temporary Mail

Do you know where your letters and packages are going while you’re between homes? If your short-term housing doesn’t have an option for you to receive mail during your stay, you’ll need an alternative. The good news is there are several temporary solutions for your mail that can make your life easier while you’re transitioning. You can rent a personal mailboxset up mail forwarding, or even get a PO Box.

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Make It Feel Like Home

Mother and young daughters making cookies in kitchen. Photo by Instagram user @mytwochickpeas

Photo via @mytwochickpeas

While you won’t be in a temporary home forever, staying somewhere that’s not yours is an adjustment, especially when you’re moving with kids. You can eliminate some of the frustration that comes with staying somewhere unfamiliar by adding personal touches to the space and keeping routines as normal as possible. Set up some family pictures. Keep your favorite blankets on the couch. Make home-cooked meals. Whatever makes you feel more comfortable in your temporary home, the better the experience will be.

Map Out the Neighborhood

Woman strolling across street along Santa Monica Pier. Photo by Instagram user @birdeeclothing

Photo via @birdeeclothing

Whether your temporary home is in a new neighborhood or a new city, it’s a good idea to get familiar with your new surroundings—even if you won’t be staying long term. Knowing where the local schools, parks, grocery stores, pharmacies, medical clinics, post offices, restaurants, movie theaters, and shopping centers are can help you feel more comfortable with your change of scenery.

Get Out More Often

Man riding bike near George Washington Bridge. Photo by Instagram user @twj_17_

Photo via @twj_17_

One of the best ways to relieve the inevitable stress of moving is to get out and about. If you’re feeling cooped up while sharing space with friends or family, give yourself a break by doing something outside of your temporary home. Go for a bike ride, hit the gym, grab coffee, check out a local festival, or visit a spa. Not only does getting out help you focus on something other than your housing situation, but it’s also good for your health, too!

Remember It’s Temporary

This is easier said than done, but just relax! Your time between homes is temporary and a necessary step to getting you where you want to be. In fact, there may even be new things you can enjoy like the swimming pool at your apartment complex, not having to mow the lawn, or getting to travel. Either way, it will end at some point, and then you’ll be on your way to setting up your new home!


Currently between homes? Self storage provides a safe, affordable place for your things while you’re transitioning to a new home. You can find a storage unit near you today with Extra Space Storage!

Pinterest Graphic: Between Homes?