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When Do Villagers Move In? Animal Crossing: New Horizons

When Do Villagers Move In? Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Animal Crossing: New Horizons is a social simulation game with lots of crafts and easy quests that you can complete to find yourself a quick distraction from the outside world. The game was released in 2020 as the fifth major installment of the Animal Crossing series.

Although the game itself is not necessarily difficult, many players look for answers to simple questions because of the lack of information provided in the game. Nevertheless, if you are one of the players wondering when his little island in Animal Crossing: New Horizons will receive its villagers, this article is for you.

Villagers will move into your island when you have met certain conditions:

  1. The first three villagers will move in after building their houses.
  2. Invited villagers usually arrive the next day.
  3. Random villagers will move to empty plots.

That said, villagers are sentient animals in the game and can be either invited by players to inhabit their island. Keep in mind that you can only have a maximum of 10 villagers on your island. If you have already reached the maximum limit, you will have to move someone out to bring a new villager.

Read on to learn more about when and how villagers arrive in Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

How Long It Takes For Villagers To Arrive On Your Island

Depending on your stage in the game and the number of available vacant spots, it may take between 1 and 3 days for villagers to settle on your island.

Below is the complete guide for inviting villagers to move in, along with the timelines for each method.

Getting Started: Have The First 3 Villagers Move In (takes 3 Days)

Before you go on to make new friends and call them to live on your island, you will have to make sure that your island is ready to receive them. 

Unlike the previous Animal Crossing games, where villagers randomly come and build themselves a new house on your island, New Horizons changes the way the game progresses by making it more in line with the deserted island theme of the series.

In New Horizons, you will have the company of two villagers when arriving on the island. and then work your way up by building houses and completing tasks. Eventually, you will be able to send invites to new users. 

Unlocking The First Invite

You will unlock your villager invitations for the first time after you complete Nook’s Cranny. 

This is where Tom Nook will give you three housing kits, and you will have to build three interior and three exterior furniture pieces for a potential visitor. After completing the furniture pieces, each visitor will arrive within one consecutive day, which means if you finish all furniture pieces in one day, the villagers will take three days to arrive. 

For the next villagers, you won’t have to make furniture; instead, set aside some land issued from the Residential Services. (it costs 10,000 bells)

Moving Forward: Buy Land and Invite Villagers (takes 1 Day)

As the first three villagers will come after you finish the furniture, the next batch of villagers will only move when you have vacant land available. You will have to select from the various island plans offered by Tom Nook to set aside the grounds for them to settle in. 

Tom Nook will inform you whenever a villager buys the land and reward you with 1000 Nook Miles as they move into their house. These villagers can either be invited by you or randomly selected by the Residential Services.

Speaking of which, villagers can move in on your island in five different ways. These are,

  • Invite them on a Mystery Tour
  • Wait for them to move to a vacant house
  • Call them from campsites
  • Invite them from other islands
  • Use Amiibo cards

Here are some further details on inviting new villagers to your island.

Inviting Villagers on a Mystery Tour

If you have a vacant plot on your island, you will meet up with a random villager whenever you visit a mystery Island. However, if you do not have an empty property, you will see that the other islands are uninhabited.

To travel, you must purchase a Nook’s Miles Ticket and take it to the airport. We recommend hoarding up many of these tickets if you are searching for a specific type of villager, and do not go on sending invites to random villagers while you’re at it.

Waiting For Villagers To Move In A Vacant House

Alternatively, you can wait for random villagers to contact Nook for the lands you have put up for sale using the housing kit. This method only applies when you have less than ten villagers on your island.

Usually, the villagers will appear the following day and move in. Once they set up their house, you will receive 1000 Nook Miles and an email confirmation in the game.

Calling Villagers From Campsites

You can also invite villagers to visit or move to your island from the campsites. Once asked, it takes them a day to either visit or move to your island, depending on your vacant plots.

Be careful that once you invite someone for a vacant spot, another random villager does not move into the house as it may cause them to go away.

Inviting Villagers From Other Islands

You can also invite villagers from other islands like your friends’. Once the island owners ask these villagers to leave, you can go to their house and encourage them to move to your island after talking to them for a while.

They will generally arrive on your island the next day and start the moving-in process.

Using Amiibo Cards To Call Villagers

You can use the upgraded Nook Stop to scan Amiibo Cards when you have a functioning campsite on your island. Checking these cards will have the campers visit your island the next day and ask you to craft them a piece of specific furniture.

If you do not have the instructions to make the furniture, you can ask them to provide it. Keep in mind that you will have to use the Amiibo Card three times to invite the camper to your island and make him three different sets of furniture to be able to ask him to move to your island.

If you have a vacant spot, the camper will move there. However, if you do not have an empty house, you’ll have to choose an existing villager to evict. Usually, this whole process will take anywhere between 3-4 days.

How Long It Takes For Villagers To Leave Your Island

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Inviting new villagers when you already have ten living on your island will require you to ask some of them to leave. 

Here’s how you can ask villagers to leave your island and how long it takes them to do so.

Asking Villagers With Thought Bubbles To Leave (takes 1 Day)

If you come across a villager with a troubled expression or thought bubbles on their head, they are most likely considering going away from the village.

Talk to them for a while and encourage them to leave or ask them to stay based on your preference. If you ask them to stay, they will forget the conversation and continue living on your island as if nothing happened.

However, if you ask them to leave, they will start packing up their house and go away the following day.

Inviting Campers To Replace Villagers (takes 1 Day)

If done carefully, you can invite campers to replace your existing villagers. Although, selecting which villager to let go of is only possible if you use an Amiibo card.

Even so, if your invited camper chooses to come in under his own will, you will not be asked which villager will be evicted.

Wrapping Up: When Do Villagers Arrive In Animal Crossing: NH?

Technically, you start inhabiting an island, so villagers arrive on the first day you come on the island. However, if you think about the invited/random villagers, they may take between 1-3 days to arrive on your island.

Be sure to complete the Nook’s Cranny and build furniture to get your first batch of villagers over three days because this will be the first step to earning more invites and building a community that will sustain more villagers.

In the end, you must maintain a balance between villagers as you can only have up to 10 villagers on your island at a time. You can also replace these villagers over time by asking them to leave or inviting campers.