10 Tips to Make Moving Easier

July 4, 2016

Moving into a new place is always pretty exciting, but it's also a sort of a drag--all that packing and heavy lifting, and then unpacking. Growing up a Navy brat, I've done my fair share of moving, not to mention the multiple apartments and houses I've lived in as an adult, so I've learned a few tricks that help to make relocating more tolerable. Here are my go-to tips to make moving a whole lot easier.

1. Purge, purge, purge.

Check closets, cabinets, storage units, and garages and get rid of anything you no longer need or use. Give away as much as you can and take the rest to Goodwill. The more you purge, the less you have to move; just make sure you're smart about what you get rid of so you don't have regrets later.

2. Pack early and often. 
Start boxing up as much as you can, as soon as you can, so you're not scrambling to get it all done in the two or three days before the moving van arrives.

3. Stay organized with labels.

Every box should say which room it is going into, as well as the contents of the box. So if it's dinnerware the label should read Kitchen: dinnerware. Labeling this way helps you see what needs to be unpacked immediately and what can stay boxed up until the next day (or the next weekend). And if you have something that needs unpacking right away, write "Open First" or something similar on the boxes.

4. Whether you've recruited friends and family or hired a moving company, have everything packed and ready to go before they arrive. Because there is nothing worse than showing up to help someone load boxes only to find out that you've also got to fill said boxes. Unless friends offer to help pack (which should still be done before moving day) don't assume they will be willing. 

5. Put your change of address form in two weeks before your move-in date. 

This is just one less thing to think about on moving day and will help for a seamless transition from one address to another.

6. Have realistic expectations. 
Even the most organized, Type A person may not be able to get everything unpacked and in its place in one weekend, especially if there are children to feed and keep entertained. If you have a garage, leave a few boxes of "non" essentials in there so the inside of your new home looks less cluttered, then one by one, as time permits, bring them in and unpack them.

7. Recruit help early, send weekly reminders, and offer incentives.

Nobody really likes spending their Saturday moving heavy boxes out of a hot van and into a house, but if you ask early enough and send reminders, you give your friends and family enough time to mark their calendars for moving day. And if you throw in cold beer and takeout afterwards, they may even help you unpack and put everything in its place.

8. If at all possible, arrange for a sitter so pets and little ones don't get in the way. 

Moving day is anything but fun for kids, so hire a sitter or ask someone to keep them occupied so you can get done what needs to be done. 

9. Try to get to the house before moving day to clean the place from top to bottom. 

You may have big plans for your new house that include painting and changing out hardware, etc., but first things first, clean the place up. You'll want to mop and vacuum, wipe down the insides of drawers and cabinets, and scrub all the sinks, toilets, and bathtubs. Get their early to do it yourself, or hire a service.

10. Make a moving day kit that includes cleaning supplies, toilet paper, garbage bags, toiletries, and a change of clothes. This way you can scrub down the new place, get all the trash out of the way, and then after a full day's work, have a nice hot shower and a fresh change of clothes. And you're covered if anyone needs to use the facilities during the unloading process.

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  1. I've always found that getting items into storage boxes earlier helps the moving go easier because packing is always the hardest part! After you're all packed up, there's nothing to do but get to your new home and set up shop!!


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