You found the perfect home, made an offer, signed the contract and now it’s yours. You can’t wait to live in your new abode, however, the process of packing up and moving in has to happen first – whether you like it or not! Want to make your move as smooth as possible? Here are nine easy tips:
1. Get organized
An important first step to any move is organization. This includes purchasing any supplies you may need in advance, including tape, boxes, scissors, blankets, bubble wrap, etc. Once you begin packing items, you will want to label and number your boxes, just in case one of them is misplaced. You should also keep a notebook handy, recording any details of your move and writing down what was packed where.
2. Get rid of what you don’t want or use
Moving is a perfect excuse to go through your belongings and get rid of anything that you may no longer want or use. This will not only cut down on clutter in your new home, but also moving costs. Once you decide what items you can part with, you may want to have a garage sale, sell items online, give to friends or donate to charity (which may be tax deductible). For tips on how to conquer clutter in your home, read our article Home organization.
3. Keep your receipts
It is a smart idea to keep all of your receipts and records of your move because some or all of your costs could be tax deductible, depending on the reason for your move and if any relocation costs are covered by your employer.
4. Shop around
Hiring experienced movers, who will properly transport and handle your belongings, can help ensure a successful move. To find the right movers, check with the Better Business Bureau to see which moving companies in your area are registered. After narrowing your list, you should then ask for in-person meetings and written estimates from each company, as well as referrals or references. Lastly, thoroughly read the mover’s terms and conditions to make sure you are comfortable with their policies and procedures should anything go wrong.
5. Don’t forget the utilities
Prior to moving into your new home, it is wise to contact your service providers for telephone, electric, gas, cable, refuse, water and periodicals to not only tell them that you are discontinuing service at your current residence, but also to provide them with information regarding your new home. This way, they can transfer service seamlessly to your new home, or if you are moving to a new area, you can set up your service so that you will not be without heat or electricity your first night! Also, remember to notify the post office of your new address.
6. Move valuables yourself
Important valuables, such as jewelry, legal documents, family photos, etc., are often irreplaceable and should be handled with care. As such, it is in your best interest to move these items yourself, rather than sending them with the movers. If you do choose to send collectibles with your movers, remember to have the items appraised and insured properly prior to the move.
7. Pack an “open first” box
There are some things that you will likely need as soon as you move in to your new home including: toiletries, cleaning supplies, a first aid kit, towels, linens, tools, etc. Packing these items in a box labeled “open first” will make things easier once you have moved and begin the unpacking process.
8. Make home improvements before moving in
If you can swing it, making your home improvements, whether its painting, new flooring or more serious renovations, prior to moving in can make the transition into your new home that much more enjoyable. Making this happen requires proper planning and timing, so thinking ahead and making arrangements in advance will help to ensure your home improvements are done prior to you moving in.
9. Leave pets and kids with friends
On moving day, you may want to consider leaving you pets and younger children with a friend, sitter or family member. This will help to cut down on stress during the move and may save you some valuable time as well.