Moving is an exciting episode in an individual or family life; however, it can also be extremely stressful.

The following tips will help you make your life easier.

BEFORE YOU PACK

Don’t move or store items you don’t really need– remember that your unnecessary items may be someone else’s necessity.

Plan a yard or garage sale. For items you want to sell, make a list, and determine which source is best for you: eBay, Etsy, or Craigslist. Start this process, at least, six weeks before moving.

As a token of your appreciation, ask the friends who will help you move if they want any of those items.

Separate items you want to donate and call Salvation Army, Goodwill, or another charity agency to schedule a donation pick up day.

THE PACKING PLAN

Set up days to complete each stage of your sorting, selling, donating, and packing.

Set up the garage or yard sale, and announce it via emails, Facebook and any other way you chose.

Set up your packing days.

Change your address before you move. In addition to the obvious (utilities, phone, car, insurances) remember to notify the bank, credit cards, newspapers, magazines, organization subscriptions, among others.

Divide your friend’s help into shifts: One group to help you move out – One group to help you unpack.

If you don’t have enough people in your network, or don’t want to bother them, call a professional organizer to assist with these tasks.  It will be a lot easier and less stressful for you. You should consider hiring a moving company if you have lots of fragile and valuable items because they provide insurance.

PACKING TIPS

Strategically wrap your delicate and fragile items. Use towels, sweaters, and other thick clothing items; this will save you money in bubble wrap and will also minimize the number of boxes you need for those items.

Pack vertically your plates and other glass flat items; they will be less likely to break.

Use socks (clean ones, of course) as practical extra padding for smaller delicate items such as glasses, small but tall vases, etc. Use plastic wrap or press’n seal to wrap your jewelry. Color coding and clear labeling will simplify and speed-up the unpacking process. Make sure all boxes are clearly labeled, including the specific room where they belong to. Make it easier by color coding the boxes if you have more than 1 kitchen, home office, and bathrooms.

Label the door of each room with the corresponding sticker/tape so that movers know where to place the boxes. Remember to label the sides of the boxes, not the tops.

If you use a professional moving company, number your boxes, luggage and as many items youcan to make sure you receive the same number of items you sent in the truck.  Doing your own inventory will be good for your peace of mind.

Minimize the need for larger moving truck space and additional boxes.

Leave your dresser items in their drawers – just seal them with plastic bags and thick tape. You can also use press’n seal plastic wrap.

Use all of your baskets, laundry bins and luggage to transport your coats, blankets, comforters and other big fluffy items. Use the ones with wheels for books.

Vacuum seal your coats and out of season clothes to make additional space.

Use extra-large garbage bags (upside-down) to move clothes in own hangers and save on boxes.

Make a slit in the middle of the bag crease (just large enough to fit the top of the hanger)

Tie the bottom of the bag to avoid dust and better handling.

Do yourself a favor – buy a big roll of stretch wrap.

You can do wonders with the stretch wrap because you can group items together, and groups of boxes going to the same room. Your furniture corners will be protected, and your mattress will not get as dirty or damaged.

Beer boxes and milk crates are great.

Store flat dishes and long flat vases to avoid unnecessary edge chipping.

OTHER IMPORTANT DETAILS

Only buy the most important groceries the week prior to the move to minimize waste or having to throw away perishable items. Arrange for a sitter to take care of pets and children on moving day. It will keep you more focused, will reduce your stress and chances for unfortunate accidents.

Defrost and wipe your refrigerator the day before to avoid moving delays, unnecessary spills, and slippery situations.

THE MOVING DAY

If you are renting…

Take pictures of your place once the place is empty to make sure you are not charged for bogus cleaning and/or repairs that may delay or reduce the return of your deposit.

Pack an overnight bag with your main essentials.

It is very likely that you will be extremely tired by the end of the move, so you will want your essentials within easy access; this includes your toiletries, and a change of clothes.

Place a cotton pad inside your powder cosmetics to keep them from breaking.

Place in a clear plastic container items you need immediately.

This includes your computer and all your daily electronics (including the cords – neatly organized in a zip lock bag).