Wineglass Bay from Mt Amos | Tourism Tasmania | Chris McLennan

Wineglass Bay from Mt Amos | Tourism Tasmania | Chris McLennan

The Holmes and Rahe stress scale is a list of 43 stressful life events that can contribute to illness. Moving house and other events that often happen at the same time as moving house, can contribute to a significant score on this stress rating scale.

Holmes and Rahe (1967) developed a questionnaire called the Social Readjustment Rating Scale (SRRS) for identifying major stressful life events.

Each one of the 43 stressful life events was awarded a Life Change Unit depending on how traumatic it was felt to be by a large sample of participants. A total value for stressful life events can be worked out by adding up the scores for each event experienced over a 12 month period.

If a person has less than 150 life change units they have a 30% chance of suffering from stress. 150 – 299 life change units equates to a 50% chance of suffering from stress. Over 300 life units means a person has an 80% chance of developing a stress related illness.

Source: McLeod, S. A. (2010). SRRS – Stress of Life Events.
Retrieved from

The life event with the highest rating is death of a spouse, at 100.

The life events that may be related to moving house locally or relocating to a new city are listed here.

  • Change in living conditions – 25
  • Change in residence – 20
  • Change in schools – 20
  • Change in recreation – 19
  • Change in church activities – 19
  • Change in social activities – 18

If the move is brought about from a change in your employment or you change jobs at the time of moving, then some of these additional stressors may apply to your situation.

  • Dismissal from work – 47
  • Retirement – 45
  • Business readjustment – 39
  • Change in financial state – 38
  • Change to different line of work – 36
  • Change in responsibilities at work – 29
  • Spouse starts or stops work – 26
  • Trouble with boss – 23
  • Change in working house or conditions – 20

It is also possible that your decision to move house, or even city, is the result of another significant life event, which would add to your total score.

  • Death of a spouse – 100
  • Divorce – 73
  • Marital separation – 65
  • Death of a close family member – 63
  • Personal injury or illness – 53
  • Marriage – 50
  • Marital reconciliation – 45
  • Child leaving home – 29

The financial aspects of buying and owning a home are also in the list of major life events.

  • Major mortgage – 32
  • Foreclosure of mortgage or loan – 30
  • Minor mortgage or loan – 17

Christmas is also on the list (12) – so move in December or January and you can add that to your personal stress tally.

So how is your score looking for your move to Tasmania or elsewhere?

If you are moving to Tasmania and want some help on the ground in Tassie to find your new home and help with orientation to your new location, then please get in touch. Our relocation services are sure to help reduce the stress of this significant life change.