Packing and Moving: You CAN Make it a Successful Adventure!
Sold! Time to Pack and Move
How Far in Advance do You Pack to Move?
How far in advance of your actual moving date do you begin packing?
Packing to Move
Moving is always an adventure, but what you don't want is to end up with broken items, scratched furniture, and items placed on the wrong floors of your house, especially heavy items and furniture that requires assembly. If you're moving without a moving company, take the following steps whether you're moving across town or across country.
To make your move a positive adventure rather than a worry about such things, set yourself up for success.
- Pack only one type of item in each box, and label each box with its contents on the top and one or two sides. Fill any empty space with newsprint to keep the box from collapsing under the weight of another box, since boxes are stacked in the moving truck.
- Use regular-sized moving boxes, not bags, baskets, random-sized boxes, or anything else you may have laying around.
- If it's too big to fit in any box (furniture, luggage) wrap it in moving plastic wrap to keep it safe from damage and from the elements in case of inclement weather on your moving day. If it is artwork, call your local moving supply company for packing advice or look online.
- Pack the things you'll need right away (the first week or so) in your luggage, transport it yourself, or put it in a very well-labeled box. Prescription and other routine medicines for all family members (including pets) must be transported yourself (in your car) for safety.
- Your car is your friend! Totally clean out your car(s) and fold down any unneeded seats. Load precious, breakable, expensive, irreplaceable, oddly shaped, or other items that can't go in the moving truck into your car(s). This includes pets and children, but they'll be loaded at the last minute in most cases--don't forget to leave room for them.
Remember to Plan for Your Pets: They're Stressed by Moving, TooClick thumbnail to view full-size
Packing Up Your Kitchen the Safe Way
On the Actual Moving Day, Here's What You'll Need
On the actual moving day, get a very early start (in case of problems) and make sure you have the following with you or in your car:
- Your cell phone.
- A camera (if you don't have one on your cell phone) to document any damages caused by you and/or the movers you've hired.
- A well-stocked First Aid Kit. (Bring pain killers whether you regularly take them or not--headaches are likely to occur but can be resolved with a well-timed NSAID.)
- Sturdy walking shoes or boots--steel-toed, if you have them. This is to prevent injury while hauling furniture around and up and down stairs and hallways and around corners.
- Medicines and pet food and human picnic food for everyone for that day. Keep to your regular schedule whenever possible.
- Your checkbook and a credit card.
- Cash for tips.
- An extra set of keys for the car, house/apartment/storage locker to give to another responsible adult who is helping you move.
- Current maps to the new location, for you, another adult in your party, and any other vehicles that will be traveling separately, such as the moving van.
- Toys, games, or movies to entertain children throughout the day and keep them out of the way. Older children may be given small tasks to help, such as holding doors or unpacking a few boxes of non-breakables or "babysitting" younger children.
- Water and/or soda to replenish hard workers' lost fluids.
- Snacks for everyone (children and pets included).
Don't forget to give everyone their food, water, and medications on schedule! The day will probably be long and chaotic, but much less so if everyone gets food, water, and medicine on schedule, including headache/muscle ache medicine if appropriate.
How long has it been since you last moved?
Was your last move more fun or more frustrating?
What You Need During and Right After Moving
Other items you'll need right away:
- Toilet paper
- Paper towels
- General cleaning supplies
- Hand sanitizer and/or soap
- Food for your pet(s) and any leashes, gates, kennels/cages, etc.
- Dishes for your first few meals (unless you plan on eating out): plasticware is good for this since you won't want to take time to do dishes anyway.
- Bleach--IMPORTANT: Keep this out of the reach of children and pets! Run your dishwasher and clothes washing machines--empty, without dishes or clothes--with a cup of bleach to clean out anything nasty, then be sure to run another load or two with plain water (again, no clothes or dishes) to clean out the bleach and be ready for your own use. Tubs, showers, and sinks should be examined for mold or dirt and treated as necessary with bleach then lots of water, also.
- You may need/want to buy or rent a carpet-cleaning machine (make sure that it heats the water itself) and hard floor cleaners.
- Paint and paint supplies--if you plan to repaint anything before moving in. Don't forget stir sticks and smaller containers to hold extra paint of each color for touch-ups later.
- New temporary or permanent window blinds--or packing paper, at the least--for your most private windows (don't forget the bathrooms!).
- The phone numbers and locations at your destination--and along the way--of the nearest Urgent Care and Emergency Rooms, for your family and for your pets.
- Box cutters to open sealed boxes and cut them down for disposal. IMPORTANT: Keep these out of the reach of children and pets!
More Information on Moving:
- Moving Tips: Things to Think About Before You Move
Here are a few things you should consider before you decide to move in to a new place; roommates, moving in with your partner, having a checklist of needs, doing your research, and the fine details.
- Moving to another country – Guide for aspiring expats
The only downside of moving to another country is the massive effort and work that goes into preparing and planning for the big move. I am armed with the experience of living overseas, moving through 2 countries and going through innumerable joys of
- Portable Moving and Storage Review: U-Haul U-Box vs PODS
- Moving Cross Country Cheaply with Amtrak Express Shipping
Amtrak Express Shipping is the cheapest way to move long distance on a budget. It is cheaper than hiring a moving company or renting a truck. Although it's a little bit more effort, moving with Amtrak Express will get your stuff across the country
- Tips on How to Move Alone to Another State
Self moves out of state is stressful but follow my tips and you may save some money and reduce your stress level.
A House All Packed Up and Everything Moved Out
About the Author
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