Moving house can be a very stressful process – it has even been recognized as a “stressful life event”. Here are some tips to make it as simple as possible:
1. Tidy up your house
Every time I have to move, I’m amazed by how much stuff I manage to collect and how much I never use. My advice is to allow yourself to keep a box of items that are useless but have sentimental value. Once the box is full, that’s it, whatever has to be removed or something already in the box has to be sacrificed to make room. Don’t let yourself make excuses, if you haven’t used it in the last year you probably won’t – let’s be honest. A new home offers a fresh start – I don’t know about you but I always feel better after a good cleaning. You can even take this opportunity to give something to charity or make a little money selling old items on eBay.
2. Start packing before you feel the need
I always think packing won’t take long, I’m usually wrong. Start with the non-essentials (these are also great for decluttering) so you can get a head start without interrupting the things you need for your daily routine. Drawers you never open, the attic/garage that was recently used for storage – these are the places to start. Once you get rid of it, everything else will seem simple. Also, these boxes will be at the bottom of your stack and the boxes with all the items you actually used will be at the top. For oversized pieces of furniture you no longer want or need, you can always advertise them on freecycle.
3. Organization is Key
Label Everything, color code, go crazy with your organization. You may have your own system that seems clear and intuitive to you, but if other people are helping in the movement, clearly labeling it will help guide them. Also assigning a label color for each room can be useful.
4. Get more boxes
You have bought a box and already have a suitcase? It was great. Buy more boxes. You can never have too many squares when moving (okay, technically you can but it’s better to have too many than too few). You can ask the supermarket if they have spare boxes or if you are more concerned with convenience than savings then you can buy a box pack.
5. Don’t bother with bubble wrap
While bubble wrap is fun (if you need an escape from the stress of moving, just stomp on it for a bit). Bubble wrap is great if you are traveling with kids, it will keep them entertained for a while. But generally you don’t really need bubble wrap, you can use sheets, towels and jumpers to wrap glassware. They have a lot more cushioning than bubble wrap and you are using up the space that bubble wrap would have taken up.
6. Make a plan
Chances are things won’t go according to plan, but it’s always good to have one. Leaving things up to the last minute or leaving things undefined will only lead to confusion and possibly stress.
7. Take time to rest
Moving house can be exhausting both physically and emotionally. Accept that you will probably be tired and sad to be leaving (even if you are happy to move, unplugging your entire being can be overwhelming and more emotional than you think). So plan fun things to do, don’t worry about the little things and make sure you ask for help when you need it.
8. On moving day, send all small children and pets away
If your child is a bit older, it might be good for them to be involved in the moving process, making them feel part of the move. But if your kids are too young to be left alone, get someone to look after them on moving day – it’s simpler for everyone. That way you know they are safe and happy and can focus on what you need to get done. If you’re really organized, you can even set up their room the moment they arrive, making the transition as easy as possible for them. Then they can explore and play in their new room while you sort through the rest of the house.
9. Know where you pack your essentials
When packing, make sure you know where exactly the things you need to use for the night are – bed, curtains, toothbrush, coffee machine, etc. Think about your daily routine and make a “everyday necessities” box.
10. If all else fails, pay someone else to do it
If you have money but no time, why not get someone else to pack up and move your house? Some moving companies even offer personal assistants to help you with anything you need during the moving process.
Featured Image by Nathan O’Nions