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To think that moving house AGAIN might be the only answer?

(6 Posts)
ash1977 Thu 15-Sep-16 16:17:37

Can't see the wood for the trees at the moment so hoping for responses to help me gain some perspective! Hoping this isn't too long but don't want to dripfeed!

Live with DH and DS (about to turn 2). Relocated in spring 2015 in order to be able to afford a decent house - bought new build, 4 bed, affordable mortgage etc. DH also had new job nearby meaning he has a 20min door-to-door commute. All lovely.

I got a new 4 day a week job earlier this year - much better for me in terms of mental health (was working 3 days before and for me that was the worst of both worlds), working at the right level, career development prospects etc. This job is also with a great organisation which really looks after its people, good holiday, great benefits etc. No complaints there.

However the commute is well over an hour each way via busy motorway and if I get public transport the connections are awful and it takes even longer with dead time hanging round at the station etc. I can either drop off or pick up DS, but not both, and DS's sleep is all over the place (seemingly because he gets excited when I come home too close to his bedtime). Can't really leave early to get in early because the earlier I leave the worse the traffic is, so tend to drop him off and work late-late (totally flexible, office-based). Can WFH up to one day per week, but it's still not really alleviating the burden. I'm exhausted, DH is doing far more than his fair share on the 4 days I'm at work and therefore exhausted at the weekends, and I'm too knackered on my non-working day to feel like I'm making any quality input with DS.

DH is now looking for a new job - the one close to home hasn't turned out to be the long-term opportunity he wanted. It's highly unlikely he'd have a similarly v short commute with any new post, which will make current arrangements completely untenable.

AIBU to think that moving to be quite close to my work could be the answer, since I'm likely to be here for a few years at least (it's the sort of place I'd want to stay through a potential 2nd mat leave, return to work etc), even though we'd have to significantly downscale in terms of housing due to the difference in prices between the two areas (lose a bedroom, potentially have to do a lot of work and also increase mortgage by about £100k), and we've only really just settled where we are - having spent extortionate amounts on the upfront costs of moving just last year, furnishings etc. But I feel like the only other option would be for me to find another job, which I'm just not up for at this point (6 months in)! HELP!

Foxyloxy1plus1 Thu 15-Sep-16 16:33:59

Depends where our DH is going to be looking for a job too surely.. Plus, if you're planning a sibling, is downsizing a good idea?

minipie Thu 15-Sep-16 16:47:26

Hmm, you will lose a lot in stamp duty and moving costs if you move, also if DH's job situation is unknown then a move isn't sensible till he has a clearer idea of what he could get.

Also, how secure is your job? And how is childcare nearer to your work/the new area you'd move to - is it readily available? more/less expensive?

Being honest, I don't think your current situation sounds that bad.

So, you drop off DS four days a week. I would suggest that 3 of those days you should get back after he's in bed so you can miss the evening rush hour and so he doesn't get overexcited. Yes it's sad not to see him but it's only 3 out of 7 days, and you'll have done drop off so had the morning with him. DH does pick up and bedtime on those 3 nights (but he can get in to work early, and has two nights he can work later if needed). The 4th is your work from home day so you can do pick up and bedtime. The other 3 days you are not working so obviously home for bedtime and see DS all day.

If you do this arrangement then not sure why DH would be doing more than his fair share as he'd only be doing pick up and bedtime 3 nights a week? Also not sure why you'd be exhausted as you'd get home at a late ish but reasonable time (say 8.30pm?) on 3 days - so can still get to bed at a reasonable time - and can get to bed earlier on the other 4 nights a week. Unless DS doesn't sleep well, but a move won't fix that.

Appreciate this will all change if DH has to move job but as I say, at the moment it's unclear what he'll get.

I'd suggest, wait till DH has found a new job opportunity and then re-assess. In the meantime stop trying to make it home for bedtime every day, and take the WFH option.

Don't give up your job - it sounds fab.

Didiusfalco Thu 15-Sep-16 16:48:38

That does sound like a hard commute, would the difference in housing quality really be so much just an hour apart? The extra mortgage your talking about and the decreased space might not seem such a problem now but It will become more of an issue as dc get bigger, particularly if you have a second dc. Where are your family and friends? near your current location or your work location or neither? would you gain a support network from moving? If you wanted to change jobs where you are could you conceivably get one?

ash1977 Thu 15-Sep-16 17:15:54

Thanks for replies so far, helping already!

To answer some questions:

My job is v secure, I've just passed probation, had an excellent performance review and being given lots of good feedback/development by manager etc. No concerns on that front, it's also the sort of organisation where lots of people have been here 20yrs +. I'm also fairly well-paid for what I do, it's a professional job, have good pension etc and I'm aware that part-time roles at the right grade actually using my skills are like gold dust.

There is actually childcare available on site at my job which is a little cheaper than what we currently use - we originally considered whether I could commute with DS but that seemed like a terrible idea since his current nursery is absolutely wonderful, a toddler in a car for over 2hrs a day would be horrendous and also it doesn't solve the actual commuting problem. It's the commuting itself that exhausts me, I'm not getting home particularly late - I find that amount of driving very tiring and also have hypermobile joints so get sore shoulders, arms etc. Familywise we knew we could manage with one long commute and one short one, but I hadn't factored in the fact that it would be specifically me who would find the commuting difficult.

Moving would make us a good bit closer to DH family, but they're not massively helpful on the childcare front. That said, in a sick child situation they're be willing to be called in, but have refused in the past due to distance. I think the commute would become really untenable if we had a second child as it'd be absolutely impossible to manage with school and nursery together.

Housing is that different an hour apart as where I work is much closer to London than where we currently live. We moved that time/distance to where we currently are in order to move out/away from London (but didn't previously live in the same place I now work if that makes sense) It's entirely possible (but equally not a given) that a new job for DH could be back in London - the combination of commuting for him and living close to my work would then obviously be much easier if we moved. It's possible for us to commute easily to London from where we currently are, but not for both of us to have a long commute. Totally agree we wouldn't do anything until his job move is clearer though.

Thanks for the practical suggestions on timings minipie I will have a think if any of that could work for us.

minipie Thu 15-Sep-16 17:27:05

Hmm yes if you are working nearer London and he ends up working in London then it does make sense for you to move further back in.

Definitely need to be clearer on his job position though.

I have a long commute but it's tube not a drive so I can see how that could be more tiring. Don't suppose any of your colleagues live nearby and would like to carpool? (as that way you would only have to do the driving half the time) - unlikely though if you are so far. For the short term could you car be made more comfy in any way - eg seat adjustments, lumbar pillow, wrist supports you wear for driving, etc?

If you do move to a new area 1) make sure you factor in school catchments and school commute, to avoid another move in a short time and 2) possibly rent out current place and rent in new area before you buy? to be sure it's the right location this time and avoid another quick move.

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