You are probably among the thousands of people who have picked up and
moved to a new home at some point in your life. If this is your first move, expect
a very exciting and time consuming process ahead. These tips are designed to
help you avoid some common moving mistakes to ensure your move is hassle
- Start smart, plan your move!
Planning your move helps everything to run smoothly. That means writing
everything down! You’ll appreciate it later. Don’t pack a single box before you
create a simple record keeping system. For some this might seem a bit
excessive, but it is recommended you create a list of numbers with a space to
write the contents of each box. You’ll place a number on EVERY box you pack
and list the contents on your list. Because life can be chaotic during a move, be
sure to designate a place in your home called “Packing Central”. This is where
you’ll place and store your moving materials like labels, marking pens, boxes, box
tape and other supplies.
- Stock up on supplies.
You’ll need LOTS of boxes–probably more boxes than you think, and having
enough boxes will make your life easier! (If you buy your boxes from a moving
company, you can always return unused boxes for a refund.) Set aside 10 or so
boxes to pack up last minute items on moving day, such as bedding, clothing and
toiletries. You’ll also need strong plastic packing tape to secure boxes. Use
packing paper or bubble wrap to wrap and cushion household goods. Again,
you’ll need more supplies than you think, so get extra.
- Color-coordinate your move.
Designate a color for each room in your new home. As an example, select yellow
for the kitchen, orange for your dining room, etc. Then apply color-coded stickers
on each box near the box number. In your new home, place a matching sticker
on the door to each room. This way the movers will know where to put everything
once they arrive at the new home.
- Pack ahead.
Anything you can pack well ahead of time will save you time
in the later stages of your move. Leaving only your bare essentials, box up as
much as you can. For most, the closer to moving day, the more hectic life
becomes. For example, if you’re moving in the summer, get your winter clothes
out of the way. Try to get
as much packed ahead of time as possible. Moving day will arrive sooner than
- Use your luggage.
Put your luggage to good use by filling each piece of luggage and all duffle bags
with clothing, sheets, towels, and paper goods. These are the items you will
usually want to access as soon as you arrive in your new home.
- Protect your valuables and fragile items.
It’s a good idea to keep valuable possessions, such as silverware, heirlooms, or
antiques, with you. If you have a cross-country move and no room in your car,
you might consider packing these items in a box titled “kitchen pantry”. Just be
sure to take care of fragile items. Oftentimes movers can be careless, and
moving companies likely won’t reimburse you the full value of your damaged
items. Also, check your homeowner’s insurance policy to see how you are
covered during the move. You may need to purchase additional insurance from
the mover. Also, find out what paperwork (receipts, appraisals, and photos) you
might need to file a claim in case of loss.
- Safeguard important documents.
Your list of “important” documents might include: school records, medical
records, birth certificates, passports, recent bank records and other personal
information. Ensure movers do not have access to your personal files to make
sure your security is protected. Either lock them up or bring them with you in your
vehicle. Keep mover information close at hand like the company telephone
number and drivers’ cell phone numbers in case you encounter a problem.
Above all, your moving experience should be a pleasant one. Try to enjoy the
experience and good luck in your new home!