Organizing Your Home After the Move

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Moving to a New Home: How to get ORGANIZED

If you are moving to a home on the day of purchase, as most people do, you are about to be confronted with all of your worldly possessions in boxes. For some people this is overwhelming. Here are a few tips on how to get organized for those first weeks in your new home.

Immediate Moving In Needs

The first thing you need to do is locate what you immediately need: sheets, towels, toiletries, glasses, dishes, and silverware. Remove from your thoughts that you will get to the rest all in good time. Plan to start unpacking boxes as soon as possible and work as fast and as long as you can until you have unpacked every box.

Start with the Kitchen

Unpack Boxes Quickly

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Begin in the Kitchen

  1. Wipe off shelves and drawers. Unless you have very few kitchen items, do not start laying down contact paper. Yes, it will be a little more trouble later, but too much delay in getting those kitchen items put away will mean lost and broken items that get dug through a thousand times looking for something in a box. Right now, lining shelves is too time-consuming. If you must, put down a sheet of waxed paper or paper towels in those drawers.
  2. Next, take 5 minutes to look around your room. Think of the kitchen items you will be unpacking. You want your dishes, silverware, and glasses to be close to your sink and dishwasher. Where can you put them? Spices, pot holders, and utensils need to be close to the stove. Now, where can you put your plastic storage containers, pots and pans, casserole dishes, cookie sheets, and small appliances? Where will your food go? You should now have a mental picture of where to put most things.
  3. Each box you begin to unpack should be done like this: place a few items on the counter, take those few items and put them either in the dishwasher or in a place where you think they might go permanently. It is okay if the item has to change locations later on. DO NOT wash everything, unless you only have a few things or have help. Wash those things you plan to use first like glasses, silverware, and dishes. Put the rest away until you finish unpacking the rest of the house. If necessary, wash an item as you take it from the cupboard to use.
  4. Small kitchens may not hold all that you are unpacking, so if necessary, place things like notepads, tablecloths, towels, shoe polish, and cleaning items and cleaners in another room to go in other locations. They could go in the laundry room, the garage, the basement, the bathroom, or linen closet. Look for unusual locations for things like above the cabinets, on top of the refrigerator, beside the refrigerator, in the stove, on the wall, or on the floor of the pantry.


Organizing Your House: Step-by-Step

  1. As much as possible, order your food in. Do not think of cooking or going out to eat. You don't want to destroy your organizing rhythm or your momentum. If you want to reward yourself for your hard work, wait until the house is finished, then relax with a nice dinner out.
  2. The next area you should tackle should be the bedrooms where people are sleeping, not guest bedrooms. The sooner you can get clothes hung and drawers filled, the sooner you no longer have to be searching for things in boxes. Approach this the same way as the kitchen, but this should be easier. Closet space may be different, but the dressers are probably the same. If you find you have to stack things because of a lack of shelf space, stack them in or close to the area where that new shelf will go. If purchasing furniture for extra things isn't an option, assess what you have. Maybe it is time to give or throw away some things.
  3. Once main areas are unpacked, some people think they can stop for a while. The problem with that is that life gets in the way, and you end up not unpacking for too long a time. If time is an issue, come up with a plan, like every Saturday until it is done or two days off from work or three evenings a week, then stick to that plan--no distractions .


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Getting Organized: The Big Picture

 What does 'how to get organized' when you are moving to a new home mean to you? Think of a time when you couldn't find your keys. Frantically, you ran around searching for them. That's what your life will turn into if you don't get your unpacking done! Unpacking all of those boxes and putting everything in a place will uncomplicate your life in ways you can't appreciate when you are doing the work. Organizing your home is not just a project. It is a way of organizing your head and giving you piece of mind.

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Kathryn Stratford profile image

Kathryn Stratford 3 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

I wish I had seen this article when I was getting ready to move! I love reading up on subjects like that. Moving can be stressful, but I love how everything looks once you have everything unpacked and put away!

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