Moving and Packing Made Easier
Moving can be one of the most stressful events of your life… and with good reason.
Packing up years of accumulated stuff, keeping track of odds and ends, and tripping over boxes—tend to generate chaos and disorder. By the end of the day, you’ll probably look at your home and want to pull your hair out.
If your stuff is staring you in the face, silently mocking you, use these 20 moving tips to help keep your sanity during your next relocation.
- Create a 3-ring binder, write down lists of everything you need to do, need to move, need to clean and when it all needs to be done.This notebook will be your moving-out bible, and could save your mind. For ease of planning, split your binder into four categories:
- Here – for everything related to your current home and the packing up of all your stuff
- There – for everything related to your next home
- In Transit – for everything and anything you may need to reference or keep as you literally travel from one home to the next
- Miscellaneous – for everything and anything you might need to reference or keep while you are without your household goods
- Schedule movers/book a Uhaul. Do this well in advance, especially if you’re moving at the end of a month (the most popular time to move and when they’ll most likely be booked up).
- If your budget allows, consider hiring professional movers who will take on much of the physical stress of packing and transporting your belongings.
- Gather sturdy boxes and packing materials from grocery, furniture or electronics stores, friends and neighbors.
- Don’t procrastinate. A few weeks prior to your move, start packing several boxes a day.
- Begin by packing non-essentials (out-of-season clothes, rarely-used kitchen equipment, knick-knacks, etc.) and work up to necessities as you get closer to moving day.
- Pack room-by-room. Focus on one area of a room at a time and don’t mix items from different rooms in one box.
- Instead of wrapping each dish in newspaper or bubble wrap, separate your dishes with Styrofoam plates.
- Sell, toss or donate anything you haven’t used in more than a year.
- Have a pre-moving yard sale and make a little extra cash while you’re at it! The less stuff you have, the less you have to move.
- Place labels on the sides of boxes so you can see them when the boxes are stacked. Pack your boxes by room and label them accordingly. Color coding boxes by room is a great way to mark where each box should go. This makes it easy for movers to identify which room they should put the boxes.
- For items that must be disassembled, keep screws, washers, and so forth in labeled plastic bags. Put all the bags in one box so they won’t get lost. Do the same with the cords from your electronics.
- Take pictures of your electronic hookups so you have a guide to use when you get to your new home.
- Coordinate your moving dates with some overlap. Leave plenty of time between closing on your current home and the move-in date for your new home to paint or put in new flooring—whatever projects you have in mind—before you move in.
- Don’t box up everything. You should personally transport jewelry, heirlooms, important papers, legal documents (wills, birth certificates, passports. etc.), and valuables.
- Pack an overnight bag of essentials for each family member: medicines, toiletries and a change of clothes. And anything else you may use on a daily basis. Keep these bags handy so you’ll have everything you need for your first night in your new home without digging through boxes.
- Slip your hanging clothes into garbage bags while they’re still on the hanger. Simply transport them to your new closet and remove the bag.
- Have a friend watch your kids and/or pets so you can focus on the task at hand.
- Hire someone to come in when the house is empty to give it a scrub down. It should cost around $100. It’s totally worth it not to have to clean the house after a sweaty day of moving boxes.
- Take your time, think ahead, and keep your sense of humor!
Moving is an exciting time, so apply these to your next move to enjoy more and stress less! For more moving tips and ideas, visit moving.com.