Disclosure: This post on 5 tips for an easier move is a paid post. I was provided free products as well as compensation in order to facilitate the post, but all opinions are completely my own and are gleaned from the experiences I have from moving.
Over our almost 15 years of marriage, my husband and I have moved 13 times. No, that is not a typo. 13 times. Now some of those were somewhat simple, like putting everything in storage and living with family for a few months while we closed on a home and things like that. Not every move was a FULL move. Even so, moving is tiring and a TON of work. Suffice it to say, that over the course of 15 years and 13 moves, I have picked up some tricks of the trade to make moving easier. I am going to share my personal top 5 tips for an easier move. Notice I didn’t say EASY move. LOL! Seriously though, these tips will make it easier. Promise!
1. Make lists.
I am talking good, old-fashioned, pen and paper lists here. Get a binder and fill it with paper and then add the following to it. Make lists for your time line. This list will include things like calling the power company to switch the utilities out of your name at the old house and into your name at the new house. When you are writing this in, include account numbers, phone numbers, confirmation numbers etc. This binder will include the times, dates and phone numbers for anyone helping you move or the moving company. My list always includes a list of items I will be needing from Walmart too (more to come on what these are later in the post). Leave space on each page for taking notes so you can adds names of people you speak to at these companies, write down confirmation numbers and keep track of dates or prices they give you as well.
It may seem weird to talk about money when you are moving. Moves are expensive. But you need to make sure you are prepared. Call your bank and let them know you are moving. This way they won’t be shocked when your card shows a random charge for gas in Idaho. I suggest pulling cash from your local ATM. Then you have cash for drinks at the hotel, an unexpected need to give a tip or whatever need may arise when moving. Also, make sure you keep any checkbooks and banking needs in a clearly labeled box. I recommend keeping it with you in the car you will be driving.
Obviously you are planning a lot of things, but this is one of the greatest things I have learned. About 3 weeks before you are moving, get a list together (to add to your binder, see tip #1) of all the things you will need to survive for 1-3 days. For us this includes outfits for everyone, one set of pj’s for each person, one blanket and pillow per person. One place setting per person…so 1 plate, cup, fork, knife, spoon and bowl per person. We always include our coffee maker and coffee supplies, priorities people! If you have babies or young kids you will want to include their needed items which might include a playpen etc. If space allows we will also pack air mattresses. This list is vital to an easier move. Why? This list is items you DON’T want to pack. All of this will go in your vehicles. This means when you arrive at your new home, your car is holding everything you need for sleeping there that night and eating some meals. With so many of us, we cannot afford to just pick up fast food or pizzas so we make sure to pack a cooler with water and drinks for the road. If it’s a short move, we move our fridge and freezer stuff. If it’s a long move, we stop at a store to buy milk, bread etc as soon as we pull into town. This list should also include cleaning supplies that you’ll need to clean out the old home and spruce up the new home.
I could not do without our Tide Pods.
I have tried other detergents but they do not fight stains the way Tide does. That being said, no way do I want to risk a bottle of Tide spilling all over our stuff. So Tide Pods it is. I make sure to have a plentiful supply of Bounty paper towels. I’ll be honest…95% of the time I clean with rags. I hate wasting. But when we move, I do not want to have loads of dirty rags sitting around so I make sure to have Bounty paper towels because they stand up strong to tough messes. We also make sure to pick up some Charmin toilet paper. We leave a few rolls at the old home so the new owners feel welcomed and the rest of the pack comes with us so we are not caught unprepared. Another important item to grab at Walmart is a Swiffer Wet Jet. It can tackle the dirty floors and you don’t need a bucket of mop water to use it (yea!).
One more quick tip….grab a can or two of Unstopables. These air refreshers come in handy (ie: sweaty guys moving stuff in and out). Also, it is nice to spray in the home you are leaving so the new owners come in to a fresh smell.
During our 3 rd move, we invested in containers with lids. We made sure they were of equal size and stackable. This has been worth every penny. First, you are not running all over looking for cardboard boxes. Two, they stack, which means they fit onto a dolly, which means you can load up the dolly and roll out 4-5 boxes at once. Third, it is more space efficient. Since they all stack, you make the most of the space in your moving truck. Four, they are reusable! Five, they are super easy to label. Which brings me to the last of these tips for an easier move.
If you’ve follower my blog for awhile you know I love label makers. They are relatively inexpensive, so I encourage you to invest in one before a move. It is WAY easier than keep track of markers and tape to label boxes. Plus if you are using reusuable containers, you can label them and then peel them off after you’ve moved. Also, keep it simple. It is really neat to think of looking at hundreds of boxes inside your new home and each one is labeled husband jeans, socks, shoes, belts and more. Kitchen plates, utensil drawer, spoons, mugs and more. However, that does not help those moving you. Instead, go into your new home and place a clear sign on each door like “Kid’s Room 1”, “Master”. Use those SAME simple labels on all your boxes. Then as people are moving you in, they look down and clearly see on a box “Master” and they know which room to take it into. Sure, it means you might dig through 3 boxes before finding your favorite jeans, but it also means not finding your favorite jeans hidden in the kids room or garage because someone did not know where to put the box.
Time to hear from you… what are your best tips for an easier move?
An accomplished author, in that I drink a lot of coffee, look at obscure websites, own a copy of Microsoft Word and know what an Oxford comma is. Hobbies include mocking Ab Lounger ads on Craigslist and napping. Former Marine, mail carrier and dental chair technician, now I spend my days trying to live up to my wife and dog\'s expectations of me and show my kids how to live life well.