Tips For Planning A Move

Tips on MovingYou have put your home up for sale and with the help of an excellent Massachusetts Realtor things have gone smoothly and there is already a sold sign in the yard! It is time now to move on to the leaving the place you call home.

Don’t let the prospect of a big move overwhelm you. With some careful planning, packing up doesn’t have to be a stressful experience. Consider these tips as you plan for your next move

Map Out a Plan of Attack

If you are an obsessively organized type, now is the time to let your quirks shine. Put them to good use! If you lack basic organizational skills, now is the time to enlist the help of a friend or family member who can take control.

Think about it. Moving involves packing and transporting every piece of furniture you own, as well as every article of clothing, every piece of kitchen equipment, every electronic device…everything. That’s no easy task. Without a thorough plan to guide the process, chaos can ensue. When chaos ensues, boxes get lost, items get mislabeled, and things get damaged. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to have a logical plan of attack to guide the process. Writing out an outline and a schedule will help minimize the stress involved with your move

Label Thoughtfully

Many homeowners start the moving process with the best of intentions. Although boxes may initially get marked with descriptions of their contents, as time passes and anxiety levels rise, these descriptions often become less legible, or worse, the labeling stops altogether.

Especially when it comes to fragile items, conspicuous markings on each side of a box, as well as the top, will help warn people to take special care when handling them. In addition, if you want to make your life easier when you start to unpack at your new abode, it’s a good idea to include details about a box’s contents. Merely marking “bedroom” on a box, for example, might not be very helpful on moving day, particularly if your new home has multiple bedrooms. Instead, take some time to inventory your boxes’ contents and, to the extent feasible, provide yourself with an itemization so the unpacking is less of a hassle.

Handle Valuables with Care

While careful labeling is a good basic strategy to adopt in the moving process, when it comes to your most prized possessions, this may not be the best approach. Several homeowners have reported to me recently that professional movers may be enticed by certain labels. For example, “jewelry” or “silverware” on a box suggests that it contains valuables. Therefore, consider using codes that only you and your family members would understand when dealing with certain items. Or, better yet, if possible, keep valuable items with you rather than entrusting them with someone you don’t know well.

As for how to actually pack important pieces, don’t skimp on the materials. Just because utilizing used boxes and old newspapers might be alright when packing certain things, breakable and expensive items deserve more care. For example, you can purchase boxes and packing materials designed specifically for fine china to minimize the risk of damage.

Gather Packing Materials Early

When planning for a move, many people are shocked at the cost of heavy-duty boxes and other packing supplies. While splurging on expensive packing materials isn’t a bad idea for valuable or fragile pieces, all of your possessions don’t need that extra care. Therefore, consult with friends or neighbors who may have moved recently, and find out if they have extra materials they would consider sharing or selling at a reduced cost. Planning ahead in that way will potentially save you some money, and it will help avoid a possible last minute scramble if you have a hard time finding the supplies you need.

Utilize Packing Supplies You Already Have

Invariably, you’re going to have to purchase and borrow a fair amount of supplies to pack away all your possessions. However, don’t forget about containers you already have that could be used to help pack away your stuff. Suitcases, duffel bags, laundry baskets, and storage containers may come in handy.

Separate Important Paperwork

There is always a risk of losing things when you make a big move, so make sure you keep important papers near you at all times. Birth certificates, important contracts, bank records, legal documents, social security cards, and other similar materials should never be packed away with the rest of your possessions.

Separate Items You Will Need Immediately

Each member of the family should have at least one box or bag that contains items that they will need immediately upon arrival at the new home. For example, pack a change of clothes, medication, toiletries, and a towel, and make sure those items are easily accessible.

Be Mindful of Everyone’s Needs

Moving and packing often creates stress, but you should always take time to address the needs of all family members. That includes children, who may get confused or upset during the process, as well as pets, who likely have no clue what’s going on. Keeping favorite toys or blankets with children and pets will help them feel secure. Also, if you have to travel a long distance to get to your new home, make sure pets are comfortable and safe in a reliable pet carrier.

Whether you are moving down the road or all the way across the country, moving usually induces stress. But don’t let packing get you down. These tips for moving will help make the process easier and less chaotic. What are some of your go-to moves when you’re moving? Have you developed your own procedure that works for you and may work for others?

Jessica Johnson works for and contributes to the Extra Space Storage blog, exploring various aspects of organizing and storing possessions. Extra Space Storage has locations across the U.S., including a Memphis self storage location.

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