7 Moving Tips For Organized & Simple Relocation

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family moving into a new house
Family

Are you moving to a new home and need some moving tips?

Are you wondering how to organize yourself, your things, and your family to make the process easier?

Moving can be a daunting prospect, particularly if you’ve lived in your current home for many years. People often wonder what to do first or where to start.

But the idea of moving to a new home is as exciting as much as it is a bit unsettling. After all, you’re leaving the familiar and moving somewhere new.

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To help make the process easier, here are 7 moving tips that can help you organize your things.

1. Create a timeline and a checklist.

When do you have to be out of your current house? When can you move into your new house? Put those dates on your calendar.

I like to print out a paper monthly calendar and keep it in a binder along with some loose-leaf paper for notes.

Organize for a move and note which movers you called and their estimates. You can also keep track of emails and phone calls in this binder.

Establish a timeline. Create a schedule for going through each room and packing up your belongings.

Depending on how much time you have, breaking this task down by scheduling a room a week is easier than trying to pack your entire home over the course of a weekend.

2. Sort everything you want to pack and what you don't.

Open every drawer, cupboard, and closet and sort the contents. You don't want to pack anything that you won’t be happy to unpack.

Remember that ugly picture frame someone gave you that you stuffed at the back of the top shelf in your closet? It’s time to either sell it (someone may love it!) or donate it.

Ask yourself: "Do I love this? Do I use this? Do I believe this is beautiful?"

Answer "yes" to any one of those questions, and keep the item. Answer "no" to any of those questions, and it’s time to remove the item in question from your home.

Go through all your clothes. Honestly assess them.

Are there clothes that are too big or too small? Will you ever be that size again? Do you want to move these clothes with the hope that one day you can wear them? Someone else would love to have them.

Are you thinking of replacing your coat? Donate it now, rather than packing it.

Do those shoes kill your feet after 15 minutes? Save yourself the trouble of packing them and let someone else have pinched toes.

3. Organize your furniture.

Sketch out the layout of the rooms in your new home. Decide where you will put the furniture you currently own. If you're moving to a smaller home, donate or sell anything that will not fit in your new space.

Resist the urge to go out and buy furniture until after you move into your new home, unless you're replacing a critical piece of furniture, like your bed.

Attach notes to the pieces of furniture with the name of the room in which it will be placed (unless it is obvious, like your bed).

The dining table and chairs go in the dining room, but a chest of drawers can also go into the dining room. Labeling the furniture this way eliminates lots of questions.

4. Buy your supplies.

Here’s a list of supplies you may need:

  • Boxes
  • Packing paper
  • Bubble wrap
  • Tape (lots and lots of tape)
  • Thick-tipped marking pens

In general, it’s easier to lift the smaller book boxes. The larger boxes are cumbersome and become very heavy very quickly.

U-Haul has boxes that have dividers for glasses. They also sell cushioned sleeves for glasses and plates, which saves time wrapping each item in the paper.

These boxes are a little more expensive, but they are huge time and paper savers.

Create a general inventory of what’s in each box. Label the outside of each box with the name of the room. For example, kitchen (glasses), kitchen (pots and pans), kitchen (cookbooks).

On your moving day, put a large, colorful Post-It at the entry to each room with the name of the room. This will help movers or anyone helping you know which room is which.

This is particularly helpful if one of the rooms is for your child, or if one of the bedrooms is going to be the office. Then, boxes designated for the office will get there as will boxes of toys for your child.

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5. Contact utilities.

Make a list of utility companies to contact.

Remember, you're not only canceling utilities at your current location, but you're also setting up service at your new location.

6. Pack essential files.

Organize your files for a move and create a separate box of files for your vital documents.

Put all financial and personal information like your passport, marriage license, credit cards, etc. into this box.

Archival files, memorabilia files, and general information files can be put into bankers’ boxes and moved along with the furniture.

Whether you are moving yourself or hiring movers, put this box of files aside and move it with your valuables, like your jewelry.

7. Open first boxes and bags.

Moving is an all-day exhausting process. Organize yourself for a move and create a couple of bags and boxes to open first.

Put the things you need to make up the bed or beds in the bag or box. Include towels, toiletries, and a change of clothes.

Have a duffle bag for each person, so that everyone will have the things they need for at least one or two days.

This will help create a smooth transition into the new home and make for an easier first night.

Moving is never easy but can be less-stressful when you create a moving timeline and take steps to be as organized as possible before you move.

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Diane N. Quintana is a Certified Professional Organizer® owner of DNQ Solutions, LLC and co-owner of Release, Repurpose, Reorganize in Atlanta, Georgia. Diane specializes in residential and home-office organizing and working with people affected by ADD, hoarding challenges, and chronic disorganization. Please contact Diane for a free 15-minute phone consultation.

This article was originally published at DNQ Solutions Blog. Reprinted with permission from the author.