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The Best Tip For Moving: Be Prepared

The most effective way to make the moving process more manageable and less stressful is to prepare as much as possible in advance (the advance part can’t be emphasized enough).

By using the moving hacks below, anyone can prepare their budget, organize their items, skillfully pack and limit the headaches associated with a major move. And the more time you give yourself to do these tasks, the less stress you’ll experience along the way.

1. Get Rid Of Unwanted Items

The best opportunity anyone has during a move is to downsize their belongings beforehand. Why? Because you’re already going through every single item during the packing process. Decluttering during a move also makes it easy to sort items by what you want to keep, donate or sell.

2. Keep All Moving Documents In One Place

Not every piece of paper in your filing cabinet will be needed during your move or even in the weeks afterward as you settle into your new place.

However, it’s crucial you keep all of the documents necessary for your move, such as address and utility information (or a laptop with this information) in one place and easily accessible on moving day. Don’t pack it away in a box. Rather, find a safe place for it in the kitchen by your purse or in the glove box of your car.

3. Start As Early As Possible

One of the silver linings of a move is that you rarely have to move at a moment’s notice.  Moving can be one of the most stressful experiences, but one of the primary ways to alleviate this stress is to start as early as possible and not wait until the last second.

Begin a few weeks out to give yourself ample time to go through your items, pare down what you do or don’t need, and then pack thoughtfully and carefully.

4. Find A Moving Truck With A Ramp

For individuals who are moving without professional assistance, there are several ways to make moving mentally and physically easier. Renting a moving truck, especially one with a ramp, will make loading and unloading easier and save time. Instead of taking multiple loads of furniture and belongings in cars or a pickup truck, a moving truck that best fits your size of home can transport everything all at once.

The ramp will also make an immense difference in how much time and effort it takes to load and unload large, heavy items plus save strain on your arms, knees and back.

5. Use The Right Size Boxes

If you want to save money, it’s easy to cut costs by reusing cardboard boxes from friends and neighbors. Savvy packers (or people who have moved a lot in one lifetime) know that it isn’t a good idea to throw multiple items into the nearest box, but that the properly sized one for what you’re packing makes all the difference, for example:

  • Wardrobe boxes can make moving lots of clothes on hangers a breeze.
  • Heavier items can be packed in multiple, smaller
  • Smaller, lighter items such as linens or kitchen utensils can be packed in large boxes and moved with ease.


6. Save The Essentials For Last

As the weeks to moving day count down, pack away more and more until all that is left are the essentials – the items you touch every single day. Think about what’s used the most, like the shower curtain, your bed linens, dishes and utensils, and maybe the most heavily used pots and pans.

7. Label Your Boxes With Detail

Packing by room and labeling appropriately is a smart move, but level up your efforts by doing a quick inventory of what is in each box and writing it on the side. After the level of effort it takes to physically relocate, sometimes it can take a while to unpack every item.

8. Pack One Room At A Time

It may be tempting to try and pack all you can in one sitting, but this could be a mistake! What makes moving particularly stressful is how overwhelming all of the “to-dos” related to moving can feel, especially if you try to do it all at once.

Starting a few weeks out, pack just one room at a time. Start putting away the items that aren’t used on a daily basis, such as extra cleaning supplies, back stock of toilet paper and paper towels, or books on the living room shelves, for example. Do the bathroom on a Monday, the living room on a Tuesday, and so on. Set aside just one hour and play fun music and see what you can get through in that time.

9. Prepare A Moving Checklist

A moving checklist that contains a written reminder of every task that needs to be completed before the move can be particularly helpful for staying organized. Within the process, there are many steps to carry out, like the preparation, packing, relocating and unpacking – it’s a lot to take in!

A good moving checklist should include:

  • Action items related to the move itself: hiring movers, acquiring moving boxes and packing materials
  • Action items related to the new home: turning on utilities, getting the new home cleaned, painted or re-keyed
  • Action items related to packing
  • A list of what you may need to buy for your new home
  • Action items related to the house you’re leaving: such as cleaning, small household repairs, making keys for new owners, etc.


The Bottom Line: Using These Moving Tricks And Tips Can Help Reduce Stress

Like most large undertakings, the only way to get through it is by taking the project and breaking it down into small, manageable pieces. Planning your move, budgeting for it, and packing over time will go a long way toward minimizing the chaos that accompanies such a stressful endeavor.