Frequently cited as one of the most stressful things to do in life, moving home is likely to be one of those key moments we cannot avoid. Requiring lots of preparation, organization and time; it can feel overwhelming.
It’s even more pressured if you’re having to move house quickly; which brings me to the reason I’m writing this article (it’s a little outside of my blogging niche but falls nicely into a ‘life lately’ style update). With our current rental lease due to end in May, my husband and I have been seeking out a new place to live. We could not have secured an apartment any more perfect than the one we’re moving into; the only issue to overcome is we were given two weeks to do it.
Thinking our application would take some time to be approved, we weren’t overly concerned about the 14-day sign on/move in stipulation; however, we were confirmed as new tenants the very next day. We were not about to let this dream apartment slip through our fingers; therefore the lightening speed packing began — we’re currently only about a week away from our much needed fresh start.
It’s been a number of years since we last moved house; the previous occasion was considerably easier because after my transatlantic hop from the UK to the USA (to reunite with my husband) we had so few belongings that we got everything in our car. Eight years or so later, we seem to have accumulated so much stuff that hides in every crevice of our current tiny dwelling; managing to get it packed away into boxes has been, well … challenging.
While this is still an ongoing experience, I thought I’d share some things to remember when packing for a move …
- you’ll likely need more boxes than you think; buy 4-5 extra for last minute packing surprises
- buy enough packing supplies such as: tape, paper, bubble wrap, marker pens, etc
- seal up your boxes well so they don’t fall apart when lifted; use good quality packing tape
- declutter as you go to make sure you don’t take extraneous items with you; remember to recycle, sell or donate what you no longer need
- tackle one area at a time to sort through/pack up and don’t try to do too much in a day
- it may take a bit longer but number each box and itemize the contents on a separate list; if you need to locate something specific before/after your move, it’s much more straightforward to check a notebook to discover what you’re looking for
- aim for medium-sized boxes for most belongings as they’re less cumbersome to lift/move; large boxes are useful when packing soft/lightweight items
- protect fragile items by wrapping them in your towels, blankets and linens
- keep clothes on their hangers; group certain garments together and cover them with a large garbage bag to act as a travel dust cover
- pack heavier/bulkier items in suitcases (books, pots and pans, etc); their built-in wheels make transporting them a little easier
- don’t forget to schedule an end of service for your utilities before you move out
- it’s a good idea to do a change of address at the post office just before you move so that all correspondence makes it’s way to you
- once you’ve moved, make sure you change your address on all your accounts, etc or anywhere else that needs to have a record of where you live
- pre-book a moving truck (if you’re not using a moving company) at least a week before your move; ask what size would be appropriate for your needs
- if moving items yourself, invest in some good work gloves to protect your hands and provide extra grip
- pace yourself as best you can on the day of your move; it will likely take longer than you anticipate so factor in extra time to alleviate some of the need to rush
It’s never too late to become who you want to be. I hope you live a life that you’re proud of, and if you find that you’re not, I hope you have the strength to start over. | F. Scott Fitzgerald
Moving will always be frustrating and exhausting; the tips included here should help moving day become a little less stressful. It’s worth remembering though that something will still go awry and get lost/left behind no matter how well organized you are. The most practical advice I can offer is to be as flexible and forgiving as you can during this time … Oh, and don’t forget your toothbrush!
How did your last move go? What guidance can you share to make the whole process as straightforward as possible?
The Foolproof Guide to Moving – This Old House