Look at moving yourself as a great opportunity to go through everything, decluttering and starting your NEW life organized as can be! Read through before starting! Moving is the ultimate organizing challenge so you’ve got two choices. You can be completely stressed and frazzled and your life can be chaotic or you can use this guideline to make your move as smooth as possible. It’s time to start packing now and declutter as you go. You don’t want to be one of the people that take the time and energy to pack and unpack and pay movers to move the 15% of stuff that gets tossed or donated after the move, do you?
Where to put the packed boxes?
If you can, choose one room and/or garage to store them. If there are boxes in every room of the house, it won’t show for selling as well.
If you are having the movers pack you then you’ll have the time to go through a shelf, cabinet or spot each day and declutter anything you don’t use or love anymore. Decluttering and then having things “picked up” and organized before they show up to pack will really help you on the other end.
Moving yourself or use movers?
Reserve the truck and/or movers. If using professional movers, request a list of items that they are not allowed to move.
What You’ll Need
- Packing tape -at least 4 rolls of packing tape and definitely a good tape gun
- Colored duct tape – you’ll put a 2″ piece on each box using different colors for each room or pre-printed room labels.
- Packing paper – blank packing paper that can be bought from U-Haul or hardware store. Get two boxes for an average size four-bedroom home. Regular newspaper will get ink on everything within 5 minutes.
- Boxes – Purchase boxes from Sams, U-Haul or local storage facility. An average four bedroom home will use 100-140 boxes. Remember to pack heavier items in smaller boxes.
- Black and white trash bags –black for trash and white for donations.
- Stop buying freezer items and start using what you have.
- As you pack and also as you get your mail, keep a running list of places that need that to be notified of your address change.
- Once you’ve picked out the new house, get measurements of rooms and draw out a floor plan for each room. Measure your current furniture before putting it onto the floor plan. This is the fun part of moving!
- If you’ll be packing yourself, start immediately is the best tip we can share! There are so many added tasks to moving and buying a new home that you don’t want to be scrambling the last month. It will be busy enough even if you are pretty well packed.
- As you pack, remember to keep what you USE or LOVE only! And a reasonable amount of items….ie: nobody needs 90 pieces of “Tupperware”!
- Start packing everything you can live without for 6 months. Write general contents of each box on the top. Use regular packing tape to close the box and just put a 2 inch swatch of the colored tape for that certain room on two opposite corners. This is so you and the movers can tell which room it goes in – especially when it’s in a stack on a dolly.
- While packing, note any items needing repair.
- Contact contractors to make any necessary repairs for current home.
- Pack each box full – use paper or a towel to complete it – especially corners. Otherwise, if a corner collapses, it can drop a whole stack of boxes.
- Wash and pack curtains that can be taken down prior to moving.
New home prep
- Contact contractors and make any necessary appointments for new home.
- Purchase (or see if movers provide) plastic adhesive carpet cover – great to have down for move in day.
It’s getting close!
- Schedule disconnection of all utilities for the day after you leave the old house
- Schedule connection of all utilities for the day before you arrive at the new house
- If moving in or out of an apartment, arrange for use of the elevator
- Refill any prescriptions that are almost empty
- Return any borrowed items, such as library books
- Withdraw children from schools
- Complete change of address for post office and go to 1stopmove.com for all other address changes
- Pick up any dry cleaning
- Close safety deposit box
- Drain power equipment of oil and gas and drain water hoses
- Defrost refrigerator and freezer if they’ll be moved
- Register children in new schools
Items to go in personal car
- Basic cleaning supplies
- IMPORTANT 1st NIGHT boxes: toilet paper, soap, shampoo, towels, toothbrushes/toothpaste, hair dryer, make up, eye contact supplies, bedding, coffee and pot, paper plates, and snack foods
- Signs for the new home as described above – plus tape
- Jewelry, or anything of great value, and any items movers cannot haul
- Your vital papers and safety deposit box contents
At the new home
- Tape up signs in rooms with the colored duct tape in the corner of each room where the movers should leave the boxes for that room. Then, you’re able to tell them exactly where to place the furniture.
- Take note!!!***VERY IMPORTANT: Before the movers leave, be sure they have the furniture placed correctly and all the boxes for each room should be stacked in one corner area.
- Remind children to not unpack anything until the movers have left
- Take a hot shower and get some sleep
- Start the next day with your normal routine. Coffee, shower, breakfast, whatever the norm
- Get washer and dryer hooked up and begin unpacking
- Take time to rest and eat right each day
- Open safety deposit box if necessary
**** Key to being organized right from the start! ****
- Most of all you’ll want to unpack one box at a time putting away each item. Keep a list of any organizing supplies you need.
- Break down each box as you unpack it before you open the next one.
After you’re moved in
- Call vehicle insurance carrier
- Register vehicles
- Change drivers’ licenses