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Are you thinking about moving? Is the daunting task of packing up your house looming over your head? Fear not! Moving doesn’t have to be something stressful. With a bit of organization and a few simple tips it can be a smooth process.
I don’t know about you, but when I think of packing up the house, the first thought that comes to my mind is the McCallister family from Home Alone running around in chaos. There are so many people in the house and so many different suitcases to pack and in all of the disarray, Kevin, the eight-year-old son, gets left behind.
While you probably won’t leave a child behind when you move houses, you may overlook something important. This can be avoided with just a little planning ahead of time.
When you move, plan for extra expenses. Often, the cost of a moving truck and boxes and other miscellaneous expenses are overlooked. To help you budget wisely, here are some helpful tips:
- Calculate the difference between your current cost of living and the cost of living in the different city or state you may be moving to. Many costs vary from state to state. Utilities, insurance and taxes can have a big impact on your cost of living.
- The move itself will require you to budget money. You will need to purchase moving supplies such as boxes, tape, markers, paper and bubble wrap. The average house requires around 100 boxes, and with boxes around $2 each, this cost can quickly add up. An option for you is to go to a local supermarket and ask an employee if they have boxes to spare. You will need cushion for packing into the boxes and you can use unprinted newsprint, packing paper or bubble wrap.
- The cost of buying new appliances is something that is overlooked. You may also need new or different furniture in your new house. Additional lamps, rugs, and various odds and ends of a home such as organizers and racks and shelves are needed.
- Insurance for the move itself is another expense. Even if you have chosen to hire a moving company, it is smart to get extra coverage because the cheapest option will typically only refund you in pennies per pound if any of your belongings are lost or broken.
- When you move into your new home, deposits and set-up fees from phone and television companies should also be in your budget. Companies can typically charge from $50 to $100 in set-up and connection fees
- You may want to change the locks on your home after moving in, if so, this is another thing to remember when creating your budget.
Planning financially should be one of your first steps. If you are not able to make the move happen financially, you should find out as quickly as possible. Other steps can be taken far in advance to the move to help you feel more organized and prepared.
Take care of your address change well in advance. You don’t want your mail being sent to the wrong house.
Make one big to-do list for moving preparation and moving day. This will help you feel in control and organized.
Start planning what you want the rooms in your new house to look like as you pack up your old house. You want to have an idea in your head of how to situate your new house before you get there.
If you plan to use professional movers, don’t forget to call in advance and set up a day that works for you and for them. If you plan on doing your own moving and plan to rent a rental truck, make sure you read up on how to drive one.
Don’t hesitate to ask your friends and relatives in town to help you out with packing or hauling boxes. You will likely be surprised at how many people are willing and available to pitch in if they can plan it into their schedules ahead of time. People understand the stresses of moving and will want to help out.
Clean and prepare your new place so it is in the best condition possible. You will also want to clean rugs, drapes, sheets, slipcovers, and other household furniture so it is in tip-top shape for your new house. Also, don’t forget to get rid of any junk or clutter in your old house. You don’t want to be responsible for moving things that you could just throw away.
All of this preparation is hard work. By the time moving day comes, you will probably be anxious to get the actual move going.
Moving companies can deliver boxes to you on moving day or ahead of time if you call ahead. The wardrobe boxes are tall boxes that are the perfect containers for odd shaped or large items that don’t weigh much. Store your comforters, pillows, blankets and hanging clothes in these boxes. If you do call ahead to request the boxes early, you can ask your mover the width of the boxes they will be bringing. Don’t make these boxes too heavy to lift.
It’s helpful to designate a color for each of the rooms in your new home and use stickers to correspond with the boxes that need to go into that room. For example, if yellow was your designated color for the kitchen, you would put a yellow sticker on all of the boxes containing kitchen supplies. In the new home, you can put stickers in the rooms they belong with. This way, movers will know where to put your boxes. Even if you don’t want to use the color system, you can post a sign where you want the boxes stacked to keep them from being in the way and to keep the system flowing smoothly.
Make sure you keep like items together when the boxes are being packed. You may have to inform the movers that you would like the light bulbs packed with the lamps and the books packed with the shelves, etc. Keep track of your small items by attaching them to the item to which they belong. Place them in an envelope or tape them down. You can also have a designated miscellaneous parts box that you take with you and fill it with the odds and ends that have been separated from their proper place in the move.
Utilize waste baskets and suitcases in your home by packing into them as well. Fill your luggage, backpacks and duffle bags with clothes, sheets, and towels. It is easy to identify a suitcase over a brown packing box, so pack the clothes and toiletries that you will need right away in your new home.
If you are responsible for cleaning your old home, remember to leave behind a small cleaning kit so you won’t have to dig for cleaning supplies in all of your moving boxes. Clean whatever you can ahead of time.
You will want to keep any valuable possessions with you on moving day. Special silverware, dishes, pictures, and other sentimental items might need to be packed in a special place and transported with you personally. Keep important documents with you as well. Birth certificates, records, bills, phone numbers, closing papers, maps and more would be safest with you.
A few easy steps can help smooth out the moving process and keep you sane on moving day!