It’s not always obvious where to start when you’re moving to a new home. To make sure your move goes smoothly, planning is essential.
Categorize your moving boxes
Ideally, you should look for boxes early and start packing up things you don’t use often. Consider re-using boxes as well. Instead of buying boxes, try calling grocery stores or pharmacies to find out when they put their boxes out for recycling and go to collect them. This way you’ll save money and a few trees as well. You could then recycle the boxes afterwards or give them to someone who needs them.
Start sorting things out. Sell or give away things you no longer use which could be of use to others and recycle what you can. This way, you won’t have to do it after your move and you’ll have less things to move.
Start packing your boxes early and go piece by piece and by category. If you can, use colour-coded cards to mark each box with it’s contents, the name of the room they belong in and exactly where it should go. Write everything on at least two sides of the box. Keep packing tape handy and seal the top and bottom of each box well.
Use old newspapers to wrap fragile objects. If you don’t get any newspapers, ask a neighbour to hold onto them for you. For glasses, use dish towels, tissue paper or bubble wrap. That way you won’t have to wash everything when you unpack. Think about weighing your boxes. Use plastic bags for heavy or fragile objects if you can. You don’t want anyone to get hurt because a box was too heavy, or for a box to be dropped and the contents broken.
For clothing, if you don’t have cardboard wardrobe moving boxes, pack them in well-marked clear plastic bags. They don’t take up much space, they’re easy to transport and they won’t be mistaken for garbage. You could even keep your clothes on their hangers and hold them together with a large elastic. Pack things clean, including clothes, blankets, towels and dishes.
What to keep handy
It’s always a good idea to have a first aid kit handy. Think about having a measuring tape, screwdriver, hammer, tape, pliers, garbage bags, facial tissues, toilet paper, adhesive bandages, but also cleaning products and supplies. This will save you a lot of trouble.
Pack a small suitcase with the essentials: toothbrush, toiletries, important medications, a few changes of clothes, pyjamas, etc., just as if you were going away for two or three days. Also make sure you keep other important items in a clearly marked box: computers, phone chargers, sheets, towels, utensils, glasses, dishes, etc. That way, you won’t have to go through all your boxes to find them, and you’ll be find things efficiently.
Prepare some snacks and drinks for your and your friends helping you move – to be productive, you’ll need to eat! Before you move everything out, put the first aid kid, important boxes and your suitcase in your car so you don’t misplace them. Call your friends the night before to make sure they’ll be coming.
Organize your move-in
Before you leave your old home, be considerate to the incoming residents and clean up. Pack the furniture into the truck by room. Once you get to your new home, get out your cleaning products and clean the closets, if it hasn’t been done already, before you put things into them. We don’t all have the same standards of cleanliness.
Put your colour-coded cards on the doors corresponding to the rooms you marked on your boxes. Indicate what should go into which closet. This will make it much easier for your friends to put boxes in the right place, or for you to do it once the movers have left. If your friends will be helping you unpack boxes, it will be much easier if everything is marked. Believe me, this will save countless hours searching for items and saying things like, “Have you seen the coffee machine?”
Did your friends and family help you with all the hard work? Think about thanking them by offering them drinks and a meal. It’s always appreciated.
You’re all moved into your new place and all you have to do is set up and decorate your cozy new space. Take it one room at a time. It’s better to take your time and get things set up properly than to do things quickly and have to start all over again.