Moving day is usually stressful, but it doesn’t have to be. Packing always takes more time and effort than anyone expects and last-minute hiccups can make you want to give up. Having a good game plan makes all the difference. Here are some ideas to make the process a bit easier.
Even if your move is months away, you can pack infrequently-used items early on. Believe it or not, if you start now, you can actually get on top of things and be organized. Packing ends up taking more time than you’d think. By taking a slow and steady approach, maybe packing one box a night, you can make sure you are on top of your move, without getting overwhelmed at the thought of packing a whole house at once.
Even if you are not a planner, a moving plan can be the difference between chaos and calm. A plan with a timeline? Even better, and guaranteed to help you stay on track and not forget that small, but crucial, task or item.
You will need boxes, black markers, bubble wrap or unprinted newsprint paper, packing tape, and if you are feeling fancy, a labeller. Kijiji or Craigslist can be a good place to find used moving boxes. Have about 10 boxes set aside for last minute items on moving day, such as bedding, clothing, and cleaning supplies.
Lots of online sites offer downloadable packing inventory sheets. Grab a clipboard, print out a stack, and you are ready to start. There are also apps available that allow you to create a visual inventory of your belongings with photos then categorize them, assign each box a name or number and manage and search easily. Makes unpacking a snap.
Now is the time to go through all your clothes, linens, and other items and decide what you really need, and what you can live without. Divide these possessions into three piles: Keep, Donate, Toss. There are many local charities that will gladly accept your donations, so you can contribute to the community while ensuring you have less items to move!
Keep sandwich bags handy for holding any small items from things you have to take apart, like curtain rods or mounted flat-screen TVs. Also have a sharpie pen to write on the bags. It helps to take a photo of how your electronics are connected so you can remember how and where all the wires go.
Your list of “important” papers might include: birth certificates, passports, school records, new job contacts, utility company numbers, recent bank records, current bills, phone lists, closing papers, realtor info, and more.
Pack a ‘day of’ kit that includes a change of clothes, toiletries, bathroom essentials (now is not the time to be searching for toilet paper or tissues) and if you have children, some books and special toys.
Designate one family member to be in charge of any pets. With doors propped open and people coming and going, it can be easy to lose track of animals. Cats can be moved early and kept in a room with a “keep closed” sign on the door. Dogs should be kept on leash. If all else fails there are plenty of dog and cat daycare centres available where you can drop your pets off first thing in the morning on moving day.
Moving homes may well rank up there as one of the more stressful life events, but a few simple steps can reduce the stress of the day itself and enable you to actually enjoy your new home.