The following guest post is brought to you courtesy of writer Jeff Brown.
Moving into a new house brings forth many emotions: excitement, sadness, and often, anxiety. You’re ready to move to a new place, but sad that you’re leaving your current home. With that comes a lot of stress. However, with the proper process, you can have a stress-free move and a pleasant transition. Relocating every item in your home is a little more complicated than just shoving items in boxes, but with a plan, things will fall into place easily. Let’s walk through four key steps to ensure a stress-free move.
- Checklists are a must
As soon as you’ve made the decision to move, you should start planning. Checklists will become your new lifeline. Print or write them on brightly colored paper that won’t be thrown away. The first list you want to make is a shopping list that includes: boxes, packing tape, packing paper, and bubble wrap. Also, start a checklist with rooms in your current home, and the corresponding room in your new home. You can also use a blueprint of your new home to determine where each item should go.
- Take photos of your stuff and your new home
Take photos of your items while you pack, and also take photos of your new home. Yup, that means photos of empty rooms! Having them will make it easier for you to fill them with the appropriate boxes an items once you’re in your new place.
- Let smartphone apps help you out
Look at moving apps to assist you. Decide which features you would most utilize, such as pre-made checklists, virtual box packing, and moving tips. There’s definitely a wide selection of such apps, and some are even good to use as personal organizers and time management tools.
- Make a budget
During the planning stage, collect any information that will help you to calculate the cost of your move. Your estimate should include the cost of supplies, and professional movers if you choose to use them.
- Tip: Contact several local moving companies for an in-person estimate.
- Clean up and let go
The first rule of practical packing is to purge as you pack. As you pick up an item, decide if it will have a place in your new home. Set up a donation station or box, and eliminate duplicate items. Return the library books that are long overdue, and grandma’s glass tea pitcher. Clean up before you leave. Not just because doing regular maintenance one last time before you leave would be common courtesy to those who will move into your new home, but also because it’s much easier to pack if everything around you is nice and tidy.
- You don’t need new boxes, old ones will do just fine
To move, boxes are essential, but they don’t need to be new. Ask your friend who just moved to save her boxes. To prevent any injuries or mishaps, think about the weight of the items as you pack. Books should go in smaller boxes, but blankets can go together in large boxes.
- Sort everything while packing
Sort items by room. Kitchen items should not go in with the master bedroom items. Also, sort by type: clothes, tech items, fragile, etc. Then, label each box in detail with the room name and items inside.
- No empty space
Fill every space. No crate or vase should be empty when moved if you have something that can be stored inside. All packed and sealed boxes should be placed in a designated area, ideally close to an outside door. It’s a good idea to use one room to store all the boxes, as it makes the loading process much quicker.
Find the Right Movers
- Ask for help from friends or professionals
It’s almost impossible to move an entire house without help. If you think you can, just try to move the couch across the room! You might change your mind about doing it on your own.You can always ask friends. However, it is better to hire professional movers if possible. They have insurance and experience, and they’re required to follow regulations. Also, unlike your buddy who “hurt his back” the day before, someone from the company will actually show up .
- Do your research
If you choose to hire professional movers, do your homework. Start by getting recommendations. Happy customers are typically eager to recommend a company, and dissatisfied ones will tell you why you shouldn’t use a specific company. If you don’t have any immediate friends who moved recently, reach out on social media. Another option is to ask your realtor. He or she deals with families moving daily, and probably knows all kinds of secrets!
- Compare prices and always stay in contact with the movers
Compare prices between your top contenders. Again, make sure to get in-home estimates for moving all of your items. Be wary of Internet or over the phone estimates. Look at how each company transports items, as well as their time frame.On the day of the move, make sure to get a phone number where you can contact the movers who will come to your home. You never know what may come up!
- Sort out your boxes
Now that you’ve planned and packed your boxes, it’s time to organize them. In your designated area for packed and sealed boxes, stack boxes according to their size. Make sure the heaviest boxes go on bottom. Look at each box to ensure that it has an easily visible label with room and item type. Also, give each box one last inspection to make sure all flaps are sealed properly.
- Pack some essentials
Pack an overnight bag with everything you will need for the first few days in your home. By doing so, you eliminate the need to open several boxes to find everyone’s clothes, medications, and toiletries. The final box you pack should be the items you will need on moving day such as toilet paper, cooking and eating utensils, and towels. Label it well, and you may even want to carry it in your own vehicle so you’ll be able to find it quickly.
- One final check
Go through your boxes and make sure everything is there. Take one last walk through the house so nothing is overlooked. When you arrive at your new home, label each room with Post-it notes or a piece of paper taped to the doorway. Your signs will allow the movers to work more efficiently by matching boxes with their new locations without asking you every time. Moving can be stressful without proper planning, packing, the right movers, and organization up to the last minute. However, it doesn’t have to be this way! Set daily and weekly goals to ensure all tasks are completed on time.
If you have an upcoming move and you’re feeling overwhelmed, A Fresh Space can help! Contact us today to set up a consultation.
Jeff E. Brown is a creative professional, a solopreneur balancing the career of a self-taught handyman, DIY expert with a knack for interior design and a writer. His two dogs keep him company when he’s working on something or typing, while he spends his free time gardening or hosting barbecue parties in his backyard. You can reach Jeff via his website