Set Yourself Up for Success
Whether your next move is across town or across the country, whether it’s in 5 weeks or 5 years, I want to help you make it go as smoothly as possible.
We all know that moving is super stressful. Last month, I detailed my Top 5 Move Don’ts. This month, on a more positive note, I turned once again to my Certified Professional Organizer® and Move Management expert friends to bring you my Top 5 Move Do’s!
#1: DO start preparing early!
It’s never too early to start!
But hold on just a sec! Before you grab a box and get packing, take the advice of Geri Chark Frankel, CPO® at GCF Organizing: do a video walkthrough of your home. This will document your possessions for insurance, guide you (or your professional organizing unpack team) in setting up the new home, and serve as a memento.
Bev Moranetz, CPO® at Streamline Organizing, says to do your downsizing before the move. When unpacking, she often comes across junk which the client paid to move and then just donated or threw away.
#2: DO let the movers pack
When the movers pack, you go from living in your home to packed and ready to move in one day! Sharon Lowenheim, Organizing Goddess and CPO®, suggests scheduling a separate packing day for the movers. Lisa Mark, CPO® at The Time Butler, takes it a step further by adding a buffer day in between packing and moving in case the packing takes longer than expected.
This rule especially applies to breakables. If you pack it yourself, it’s not covered under moving insurance. For high-value items, buy additional insurance beyond the standard $0.60 per pound, recommends Barry Iszak, CPO® at PackingMovingUnpacking.com. Since most claims range from $500-$1000, Barry says to go for the $0 deductible option.
#3: DO organize as you pack
This means your stuff won’t be a mess when it arrives at your new home, says Amy Payne, CPO® at Lasting Order. To make it super easy—and even fun—use Amy’s Ultimate Color Moving System.
#4: DO label every side of every box
Angie Hyche, CPO® at Shipshape Solutions, says you can’t over-label: label the tops and sides of all boxes so you can see the labels when boxes are stacked.
Bari Goldstein of Let’s Get It Done! reminds us to label boxes with the rooms they are going to in the new home, which is not necessarily the same as the room they’re coming from.
#5: DO plan for move-day essentials
Lisa Mark, CPO® at The Time Butler, uses red tape to mark off a “Don’t Touch” area so movers know not to mess with important personal items. This is where you’ll put medications, child and pet supplies, clothing, toiletries, snacks, electronics (and chargers!), and vital documents. You’ll personally bring these to your new home.
Pack an “Open Me First” box stocked with everything you’ll need for the first few days in your new home. Holly Uverity of Office Organizers says this should include things like toilet paper, towels, pillows, linens, paper plates, TV remote (if it’s not taped to the back of the TV), coffee maker and coffee.
To put a cherry on the top of your move, my bonus DO is a little gift you can give yourself. Ditch the dingy old bed linens, towels, and even pillows and buy yourself some fresh new ones. You can even order them online and have them mailed to the new home so they’re there upon arrival. After the stress of moving, you’ll be so happy to take a hot shower, wrap yourself in a plush towel and lie down on crisp sheets and a puffy pillow.
NOTE: Find out how to donate the old linens by searching for “fiber recycling” in your area. Some animal shelters also welcome donations of used linens, but typically don't take pillows (The dogs make a mess of them!).
I can’t guarantee that your move will be totally stress-free, but if you've done these 5 things it’s sure to be a success.