Change Your Address
With so much pre-move planning and packing, it’s easy to forget this (annoying) yet important step. First, make sure you have the correct address for your new home or office. Two-three weeks before the move, let the post office know by filling out a change of address form in person or online. You’ll want to do the same for all bills and payments, including utilities, cable/internet providers, banks, insurance companies, doctors, dentists, magazines, newspapers, Amazon.com, etc.
Moving is the perfect time to scale down. If you’ve been holding onto things that you no longer use, why put all that energy into packing, moving and unpacking them? Save yourself time, energy and moving costs. Grab a notebook, go from room to room, and honestly assess its contents. Identify items you use everyday, sometimes and hardly ever. Consider letting go of these “sometimes” and “hardly ever” items. It will be a relief when it comes time to unpack. You may decide to have a yard or garage sale, post some items on Craigslist or eBay and actually raise some money to supplement the move. There are also plenty of donation centers and thrift stores that would happily accept your unwanted items, and if you hold onto your receipt, you can claim a tax deduction at the end of the year.
Green Your Move
Set aside your clothes, socks, towels and linens to use in place of packing paper and bubble wrap where you can. You’ll not only save yourself money, you’ll “green” your move. For example, you can use clean socks for extra protection for glasses and small breakables, and towels to pack plates and bowls. By the way, don’t forget to pack plates vertically, not horizontally. They are less likely to break this way.
Label everything and have fun with it! Use colored markers and tape to color-code each room. Before the movers arrive, stick some colored tape on the door where the “red boxes” will be going, for example. In addition to color-coding your boxes, make sure to mark what’s in them. This will make unpacking a lot easier.
Take a Snapshot
Use your phone’s camera to take a picture of all electronic connections. It will be easier to reconnect them to if you can visually see where all the wires go. Do the same for other items. If you’ve taken great care to organize a particular room, closet or cabinet, take a picture of it; it might be nice to have some tried-and-true systems to go by when you set up your new place.
Pack an Overnight Bag
Include your essentials like medication, toiletries and a towel so that you have immediate access to them. You might want to include phone chargers, laptops and remote controls in this bag as well. If you’ll be moving into the evening, pack pajamas and some clean sheets to make your bed. If you’ll be working the next day, pack an outfit for work. That way you won’t have to rummage through boxes late at night or early in the morning.
Be Ready on Moving Day
If you’re self-packing, make sure loose items are packed, boxes are closed or stackable, and items are color-coded and/or labeled. Defrost your refrigerator the day before and wipe out any liquid. Hallways should have clear, easy access to prevent accidents, damage and to move in and out most efficiently. Consider hiring a sitter for children and pets if possible. We know of movers that unknowingly moved a cat across country because it jumped into a dresser to hide as it was afraid of the movers. Don’t let this happen to your pet!