So you’re making the big move, congrats! This should be an exciting time; a new chapter in your life. However, the daunting task of packing your things, shipping them off, and then unpacking them often takes the enjoyment out of this special occasion.
Here are 10 moving tips to help make your move worry free:
1. When packing your things, label the box that with what contents are, and what room it will be going into.
You can instruct your movers to place each box in its designated room so when you are ready, you can start unpacking room-by-room. This will make the moving process more manage
able and organized.
We recommend putting the label on the side of the box, as opposed to the top, to ensure visibility even when the boxes are stacked on top of each other.
2. Wrap breakable items in clothing.
Moving can get expensive. Even small items purchased for the sake of moving can quickly become a big expense. Instead of buying endless rolls of bubble wrap, use what you already have to wrap breakable items.
For example, soft clothing often works as well as bubble wrap for fragile items. Not only are you saving money, but you end up saving time by packing both clothes and items simultaneously. And, you’ll lessen the impact on the environment by having less bubble wrap to throw away later.
3. Take a photo of how your electronics are connected before disconnecting the wires.
Nothing is more time consuming and frustrating than having 100 different wires that go in the back of your computer and having to remember how they were connected.
Before packing your electronics, take a photo (on your phone for extra convenience!) of how all the cords are connected. When you get to your new home, you can then pull up your photo and quickly reconnect and power things up without having to spend hours trying to remember which cord plugs-in where.
4. Vacuum seal your clothing.
To save on space in boxes, it’s often a good idea to vacuum seal your clothing. When arranging your clothes to be vacuum sealed, group them by season; any out of season clothing can remain sealed and in storage until you are ready to take them out months down the line. Vacuum sealing your clothes will help you save space while packing as well as in your new home.
5. Start getting rid of items weeks in advance.
Moving can help you realize how many things you have but never pay any attention to.
This is the perfect time to categorize unwanted objects as either an item “to sell,” “to throw away,” or “to give away.”
Items that you deem too valuable to just give away can be sold on sites like eBay or Craigslist. This should be done weeks ahead of your move so that you have ample time to sell the items and not have to take up extra moving space by lugging the unwanted items to your new home.
Other items that you want to give away should be given at least a week or two before moving. You can call and arrange for a local charitable organization to come by and pick up your things, thus making it a few less things that have to be packed for your big move.
If you have a lot of material – or very large items – to throw away, you may want to enlist the services of a junk removal firm. One that we recommend in the DC area is 123Junk.
6. Change your address at least two weeks before moving.
You will want to ensure you get all your important statements and letters on time and in the right location, so changing your address ahead of the move is extremely important.
You no longer have to go straight to the post office to change your address; people can now go online to the U.S. Postal Service website and do it directly from there.
Also, often times when you change your address, companies will give out valuable coupons that might help you get good deals on items you will need in your new home. Those coupons may also help you get familiar with local stores in the area that you didn’t even know existed. You can even get these coupons while changing your address online. After filling out your change of address form, you will be prompted to select which coupons you wish to get delivered by mail or email.
After you change your address, you will want to call your credit card company and any publications you subscribe to to inform them of this change.
7. Use laundry baskets and suit cases for packing personal or immediate need items.
Let’s face it, moving trucks only have so much space; it’s important you use space wisely. Laundry baskets and suitcases are, more likely than not, coming with you to your new home. Instead of sending them off empty, you can use them to pack the things you deem necessary for immediate use in your new home; things like shampoo, paper towels, soap, toilet paper, sleeping clothes, etc.
Also, you can transport items your mover will not take, like personal papers, jewelry, legal documents, prescription drugs, and more. If you are unsure which items your movers will not take, check out this list of items not to pack when you move.
8. Don’t buy groceries in the two weeks prior to moving.
Your mover will not move perishable items, like the contents of your refrigerator. And if you have too many things in the fridge, you might end up throwing away a lot of good food.
Make sure that your last trip to the grocery store is at least two weeks prior to moving. This will give you a chance to gradually empty out your fridge and you will end up wasting a lot less food.
If it’s moving with you, remember to defrost and clean your refrigerator at least two days before moving.
9. Put tape or plastic wrap around the openings of toiletries so it doesn’t make a mess.
Anytime you pack a shampoo bottle, it’s always a good idea to tape the top of the bottle, where the opening is, to prevent spillage.
Often, these bottles unintentionally open during travel and when you unpack the boxes, you are left with a fragrant mess.
These messes can also be avoided by covering the opening of your toiletries with plastic wrap and then putting the tops back on.
10. Take measurements
All the furniture you currently own may fit beautifully in your current home, but it may not be such a good fit in your new one.
It’s important you take measurements of your big furniture items to make sure the transfer of your belongings is a smooth transition.
You may also want to bring a tape measure and take measurements of the walls and windows if you plan on applying any wallpaper or hanging curtains or paintings.