Use These Hacks For a Smoother, Stress-Free Move
It takes time, effort, and a lot of patience to pack up all your things and move to a new place. Making sure you have enough supplies, keeping track of all you things, and ensuring that nothing breaks or gets left behind is a lot to think about. Without proper planning and organization, your move can be utter chaos and a permanent headache. So, staying calm and being efficient right from the start is the best way to get through the moving process.
To help you out, here are some useful tips that will keep your packing on track and your move less hectic.
SEE ALSO: 6 Need-To-Know Tips For Relocating To A New City On Your Own
1. Keep Things Organized
As mentioned, the key to making a move easy and stress-free is keeping organized. A good way to start is to take a notebook or binder and create a moving planner before starting the packing process.
Look at this planner as your ultimate source of all things moving and packing. In it you should include:
- Your room color code (see tip #5)
- The number of boxes you have in each room
- The contents of each box
- All the pictures you took (see tip #8)
- Any documents you may need during the move
You can also put together a box of packing supplies that you can easily take into each room
youre packing. Fill the box with labels, markers, scissors, tape, stickers, and anything else youll need for packing. Having this box handy will definitely make packing go smoothly and quickly.
2. Start The Packing Process ASAP
You should begin the packing process as soon as you decide to move. This doesnt mean you need to start boxing up everything months in advance, but you should at least start organizing your belongings a few weeks before your move
. Think about what things you need, what you dont need, and what needs to be kept in storage. Also, return any borrowed items and make sure you retrieve anything youve leant out.
With that done, begin with packing up the things you dont use very often or wont be needing immediately.
Start with things in your garage, storage room, or attic. As you get closer to moving day, move on to your everyday things, like kitchen and bath items, office supplies, electronics, and kids toys. Save the essentials, like clothing, toiletries, and food, to the last few days before the move. Your valuables and important items, like computers, jewelry, and personal documents should be packed last, making sure you keep these with you so they dont get lost or stolen.
3. Get Rid Of What You Dont Need
Now is your chance to de-clutter and get rid of all the things you dont need in your new home.
Havent used that treadmill in over two years? Sell it on Craigslist. Do your children have toys or clothes theyve outgrown? Give it to charity. Still have that box of dirty old junk in the garage thats been there forever? What are you waiting for? Throw that stuff away already! Whether you have a yard sale, donate, or just throw things in the trash, purging anything you dont need anymore will save you time, space, energy, and money in the long run.
4. Box Smart
When you pack your items, its best to do it room by room. Putting things from different rooms in the same box will make your packing and unpacking slower. Also, here are a few guidelines to keep in mind when it comes to the actual boxing of your items:
- Dont over or under pack: if you over pack a box, making it too heavy, itll be too hard to move. If you under pack a box, leaving a lot empty space inside, theres more of chance your items can move around and break, or the box can collapse if something is stacked on top.
- Pad the bottom, corners, sides, and top of the box: this will also help prevent collapse and ensure your items dont move around or break during travel.
- Place heavy items on the bottom and light items on top: this will make the box more balanced and easier for transport.
- Use small boxes for heavy items and big boxes for light items: which should keep the weight of each box easy to manage.
- Use original packaging: if you have the original box and packaging for an item, use it. This is especially helpful for transporting electronics, breakables, or weirdly shaped items.
- Use suitcases, baskets, hampers, bins or any kind of stable container: this will reduce the amount of packing supplies you need to purchase. Just make sure to cover the top securely if it needs it.
- Tape the bottom of the box securely: use heavy duty tape to tape down the center and along the edges of the flaps. You should also place a few strips of tape perpendicular to the center strip.
5. Label Everything
Taking a few moments to label each box will make unpacking and finding everything you need so
much easier. Not only should you label the box with the room the items will go in, but also number each box and include the contents (general or detailed, its up to you) of it. Using a color coded system, with colored tape or stickers, will also be helpful.
Designate a color for each room and place a piece of tape or a sticker of that color on each side of the box, or overlap the top corners so its easy to spot. On moving day, the movers will know where each box goes by looking at the color.
6. Bundle Items Together
Keeping like items bundled together will also save time and space.
Clothes, for example, can be left on hangers and packed into trash bags. Simply cut a hole on the bottom a trash bag and slide it over the hanged clothes, making sure the hangers go through the hole. Wires, cords, and hardware can also be bagged (and labeled) together so everything is in one place. Just make sure to tape (preferably painters tape since it doesnt leave any residue) the bag to the device or piece of furniture it goes with. Another time saving trick: instead of emptying out all your dresser drawers and boxing the items up, just leave everything in and cover it with plastic wrap. This way, when youre moved into your new place, you can just unwrap the drawer and slide it back into place.
7. Recycle Packing Supplies
Moving supplies can get expensive, especially if you have a lot of things to move. To save money, think about recycling.
Check with friends, neighbors, or anyone you know who has recently moved if they have anything you can use. Ask around at your local stores if they have any boxes you can have, or try Craigslist for cheap packing supplies. Also, instead of going out and buying bubble wrap or other types of padding, use something you already have. Here are some ideas you can try:
SEE ALSO: 6 Cheapest Packing Methods To Save You Money
- Use towels, blankets, linens, or old clothes to pad boxes.
- Use foam plates between your regular plates to act as a cushion.
- Stuff socks into cups and glassware, and wrap them around the handles and stems to create a protective barrier between them.
- Newspapers, magazines, phone books paper towels, and gift wrapping paper all make good alternatives to packing paper.
8. Take Pictures
Taking pictures of all your things is an easy way to inventory all your possessions, plus its great to have for insurance purposes. You should also take pictures of cords, wiring, or anything else that needs to be put back in a certain order, before disconnecting or disassembling them.
This way, youll have a visual guide to help you when you need to put things back together.
9. Clean As You Go
According to Psychology Today
, a messy home can leave you feeling anxious and overwhelmed. Moving, unfortunately, can be a very messy business. So, make sure to also clean everything as you go.
This has the added benefit of not bringing dirty things into your new home. Dont box anything if it needs cleaning first, and make sure to tape off or wrap up containers that might spill. If you have rugs or drapes professionally cleaned, theyll come back to you rolled and wrapped in plastic, making it ideal for transport. Get mattress covers for you mattresses, or use two fitted sheets (one on each side) to prevent it from getting dirty. Also make sure to defrost and clean out your fridge at least two days before your move.
Again, the secret to avoiding all the chaos and stress of moving is to keep things organized, which, admittedly, will take a bit of effort. However, as long as you take things one at a time, stay on track, and take deep calming breaths when needed,
youll be happily moved in and settled in your new place in no time.