When you’re emotionally drained, it pulls focus from the many urgent details that need attention when moving. Between hunting for a home that meets your needs for budget AND location AND space…stress continues to pile on as you adjust to your new commute, job, and roommates. With these moving preparations, you can put your energy toward embracing the exciting changes about to happen instead of trying to remember why you wanted them.
How to Make Moving Less Stressful
- Self-Care: Tensions are already high when moving, so don’t elevate them with lack of sleep and poor nutrition. Avoid fast food and copious caffeine that lead to burnouts and sugar crashes. And don’t squeeze all packing into a few backbreaking hours. When you’re down to the wire, there’s no time to rest. You’re the only thing that truly has to make the move. So take care of you.
- Healthy Goodbye: Take time to visit your favorite people and places so you don’t panic at the idea of leaving them behind. This is especially important if you have children to make the move less scary and help them experience satisfying closure.
- Pre-Planning: As soon as you have that move-in date, create a task checklist. This is especially important in the summer as everyone’s leases end all at once. A solid timeline will bring you peace of mind. If anything, it gives you something to reassure you that you’re on top of everything. 8-12 weeks out make sure the checklist includes getting your moving truck estimates, gathering packing material, and filling out a change-of-address form.
- Flexibility: Delayed dates, hidden fees, a moving truck groaning under the weight of too many things...there are so many potential mishaps. Steel yourself to expect the unexpected. Having a backup plan of who can help you and when will prevent mental exhaustion. Remember: Borrowing a friend’s couch and garage are less expensive than renting motel rooms and storage units.
A few tips to consider when purging:
- Getting the measurements of your new space can edit your furniture inventory.
- If you haven’t worn a piece of clothing in the last year, you’re probably never going to.
- Books can have sentimental value, but be replaced with digital versions or a library card.
- If you wouldn’t notice whether something fell off a moving truck, it doesn’t make the cut.
- Keep track of valuables – passports, leases, or insurance information should stay with you, not be floating in the ether.
Labeling your boxes clearly will help big time come moving day!
- Label boxes per contents and future location in your home (this is easier when you pack one room at a time - even easier if you pack one week at a time).
- Distinguish any needed or breakable items. Off-season or less-used items can be stowed away first. This helps curate an overnight bag of outfits and toiletries for travel.
- Pack heavy things in small boxes. It makes everything quicker and easier to carry out.
- Plastic packaging can withstand weight and spills.
Get the materials.
- Tissue paper, bubble wrap, or clothes can act as padding for fragile dishes, etc.
- Grocery stores are eager to gift you with unused boxes. Make use of any of your own luggage, gym bags, or book bags.
- Keep markers and tape handy.
Don't be afraid to ask for help
Rely on the empathy of friends and family for a few hours at a packing party. You can even frame it as an opportunity to spend quality time together before you leave - just don’t forget to wine and dine your helpers. Be sure to bring on a variety of people for packing, heavy lifting, or babysitting. Oh, and kids and pets should be out of the hustle and bustle!
If you're hiring movers, be sure to research trustworthy movers that are timely, diligent, and transparent about their fees. You'll want to take pictures to verify the condition and amount of items coming with you in case anything is broken or goes missing. These pictures might even help you plan your layout at your new place.