Movin’ On

Moving is never easy. Even under the best of circumstances it can be exhausting and stressful. Here are a few tips to make movin’ on a little easier.

  • Make a list of have to haves and want to haves for a new house. Start by deciding what is negotiable (that hot tub) and what is not (a fenced yard for Fido). This will help your realtor narrow the search and keep you from wasting valuable time looking at unsuitable properties.
  • Be aware of the market. Zillow is a great app that lets you see the value of homes, what’s for sale in your area, and houses that have recently sold. Whether you’re looking for a home or comparing home values in your area, this app is an easy way to get perspective on the market.
  • Once you’ve found your dream home, create a timeline for moving. Plan ahead for the things that need to get done (everything from signing buyer’s agreements to transferring school records) and by when they need to be completed. Some things can only be done the day of a move, so accomplish as much as you can before the big day. If you need a little help, apps like Moving Cheklist Pro, can provide a suggested timeline and a way to keep track of what you’ve accomplished.
  • Organize and sort. Start by putting items in the rooms where they belong, and grouping like items. This will make packing and unpacking easier.
  • Purge, purge, purge. Does the entirety of that junk drawer really need to be moved? Are there items your kids have outgrown, books you’ve already read, or things you no longer use? This is the time to donate those items. Moving costs time and money, so make sure you prioritize what is essential.
  • Eat what’s in your pantry. Rather than moving boxes of canned soup and dried pasta, make an effort to incorporate what you have stored into family meals before the move. If the length of your move makes transferring food impractical, consider donating the food to your local food bank or giving away the contents of your fridge/freezer to a neighbor.
  • Start preparing the kids and pets. Consider letting your children send letters to their friends or printing out fun cards to give out at school with your new address. Let them participate in decorating their new room, check out a book from the library on their new city, or locate area attractions they will be interested in. If you’re flying with pets, make sure to check airline regulations ahead of time for required immunizations and crating guidelines. Consider whether Fido will need a sedative for a long trip and don’t forget to update his ID tags with the new address and phone when you arrive.
  • Start looking for boxes and packing material early. Send out a request on social media for boxes and packing materials. Check Craig’s List for others who have recently moved and have boxes to get rid of. Ask your local liquor and grocery stores for boxes and recycling facilities for grocery bags to pack breakables in. Invest in a heavy duty tape gun. If you’re having trouble locating boxes, try to buy used boxes, or to rent plastic stackable crates.
  • Label everything. Color code boxes with a small sticker or use colored index cards to label, then create a key so that boxes will end up in the rooms in which they belong. If you’re really looking to be organized, Moving Day app allows you to catalog, print, and scan barcodes for each box. Make sure to label the top and the side of each box so that stacked boxes can still be easily located.
  • Pack the truck with the larger, heaviest items first, filling in with lighter items on top. Anchor any loose furniture to the truck walls and pack items as tightly as possible to reduce shifting en route. Over-packed, heavy boxes are more likely to be dropped or damaged, so use smaller boxes for books and larger boxes for bedding.
  • Plan ahead for snacks, bottled water, and meals on-the-go the day of the move. Pack a bag with personal care items to get you through a few days of unpacking and store all essential documents in your locked car.
  • Notify everyone. Fill out a change of address form at the post office so that your mail will be forwarded (you might also consider leaving a self-addressed stamped manila envelope at your old address in case any mail slips through). Notify your utilities, credit card companies, magazine and newspaper subscriptions, place of employment, and friends and family of your new address.
  • Enjoy your new home. It might take a while to get settled, but a move can offer a fresh start, a new chapter in life and the opportunity to move not just out, but on!