Moving is stressful, be it in the city or across the country. Once you’ve closed your house, the realities of packing, moving, and setting up a new home can become overwhelming. While no list can make a move “stress-free,” planning ahead and staying organized can make your move a little smoother. Here’s our list of tips:
Once you know your future move date, set a quick timeline to make sure you can get all the important tasks done on time and ready for your move.
Think how much stuff you have by doing a house inventory. This can help you decide whether you should hire movers to assist you or whether you should manage your move on your own. Many moving companies provide inventory lists to help you estimate the size of the truck you will need. You can later use your list as double taxation for insurance purposes.
Once you have decided how you are going to move, you need to make a reservation. In general, moving companies and truck rental companies are overbooked at the beginning and end of the month. If you are planning to hire a moving company, contact a few in your area for a quote. Ask your real estate agent, family or friends to find companies and consult online reviews. It’s also a good idea to Request a quote and compare companies.
Prepare for your move
- Moving is a great opportunity to get rid of clutter, clutter or outdated stuff. Set aside some time to sift through your closets, storage areas, files, drawers, and more. Go through messy areas and organize items by “containers”, “giveaways” and “trash”. You have less to pack and the ability to update after you move. Contact a local non-profit for your donations; some will make arrangements to collect larger donations such as furniture. If you have valuable items, eBay or craigslist are good options.
- Changing your address is one of the more tedious tasks in the moving process. You must change your address at the United States Post Office. The online form can be found here: Movers guide.
You should also change your address with any account you have. Here’s a list to get you started:
- Utilities (electricity, water/sewage, oil/gas)
- Cell Phone Service
- credit cards
- Magazine Subscriptions
- Insurance companies (car, home/renters, health, dentistry, vision, etc.)
- Other personal services
Let the packing begin
Before you start packing, it can help to visualize where everything you have will go. Maybe furniture fits better in another room? Think about the floor plan of your new home and think about what goes where. This helps with wrapping and labeling as you pack everything.
Use a tool like floorplanner.com to plan where furniture and items will go.
When it comes to packing, you have a number of options. You can work with a service that provides reusable moving boxes or you can reuse or buy cardboard boxes. Provide sufficient boxes, packing tape, dark markers and wrapping paper.
Pack rooms according to your floor plan. Label boxes with contents and room. This makes it easier to unpack your house and know where everything is going.
Real Simple magazine has some great tips on: packing for your move.
If you need to disassemble any of your furniture, make sure you keep all the parts and instructions together. Be sure to set your supplies aside for the day you move. Being tired and unable to shower or make your bed can be difficult at the end of a long moving day. Here are some ideas of what you could pack in your “moving day” boxes:
- Clean bedding for the beds, pillows and blankets
- Clean towels
- Shower curtain, liner and hooks
- Toiletries, hand soap, toothbrush, etc.
- Disposable utensils, cups, napkins, etc.
- Rolls of toilet paper
- Snacks and water
- Change of clothes
- Tools for reassembling furniture, installing hardware and hanging pictures
make your move
- Come up with a game plan together with your family, so that everyone has a role and a role to play
- Once the house is empty, redo it in your old place to make sure it’s clean for the next owners/occupiers. Here’s a handy checklist for cleaning.
Heating your new home
Once you’ve settled into your new home, warm it up by inviting friends and family over to celebrate. Here’s a great infographic about it: housewarming traditions and symbolism. Announce your move to distant friends and family with moving announcements to ensure you stay on the Christmas card mailing list.
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