Helpful Tips For Moving

11 August 2013

As you may know by now, I’m currently in the process of moving. It’s been a while since I’ve had to move, and since then I’ve accumulated quite a bit of stuff; stuff that needs to get packed. I’ve spent the last few weeks trying to plan out my packing so I’m not frantically throwing things in random boxes the night before the big move, spending endless hours scrolling through Pinterest trying to find the best packing and moving plans and have found quite a few really great tips, and along the way have discovered a few of my own.

With the new school year before us, and a lot of you going away to college or university, I thought I’d give you guys some tips that I’ve learned in order to have a (somewhat) smooth move.
1. Make a list

Getting organized is hard during a move because there is so much chaos-- so make a list. A lot of times we forget about the little things, so by making a list we can avoid franticly running around like a chicken with our head cut off. Start off by looking at your moving date and how much time you have between now and then to complete things, and then prioritize. What can you pack early? What needs to be purchased before (or after) you move? Do you need to rent a moving truck? Remember to switch over your utilities and address, and give them at least 2 weeks notice so you don’t have to wait forever to get your internet set up. Keep the list handy so that when something else pops into your head, you can write it down instead of trying to remember what it was later.

2. Start collecting boxes
It seems like nowadays most grocery stores aren’t giving away their boxes, so if you wait to long, you might not get enough. Mention to your friends and families that you’re looking for boxes, so if they see any, to pick them up. This way, you can also pack as you collect, which will save you time as you approach your big day. Helpful tip: I really like using old banana boxes because they come with lids and handles, which makes it very easy to transport.

3. Label
If you are having people help you move, it’s really efficient and less time-consuming if you not only label what’s in the boxes, but what room they go in. That way you don’t have people trying to track you down asking where to put things, or having to remove the boxes to their designated room. Number your boxes as well just in case a box is forgotten, you’ll be able to track it down easier.

4. Take pictures of your electronics
I’d like to think of myself as tech-savvy, but even I am a victim to the cable chord mix-ups. Taking a picture of the back of your TV and the proper wires hooked in will save you the time (and the tears) of figuring out which wire goes where.

5. Distribute your books
If you’re a big reader like me, you’ve probably collected quite a few books. It can be hard to move books if you’ve packed them all in one box, as they can get very heavy, and if you don’t have a dolly to move them you could really risk injuring yourself or breaking a box The best way to move them is to distribute your books through other boxes. I’ve started backing them with clothes since clothing ways next to nothing. Plus, because books can fit easily into nooks and crannies you can save on boxes by throwing them into whatever boxes still have extra space.

6. Wrapping breakables
I know most of us use reusable bags, but you’d be surprised with the amount of plastic bags you’ll find hidden in your house! Instead of buying bubble wrap, wrap your breakables in the plastic bags. Or, if you have lots of scarves, you can wrap them in those as well. Pack plates like records, because they’re less likely to break, and stick classes into clean socks.

7. Take pictures
If you’re renting like me, before you repaint or move anything in, take pictures of the place before you move in. This way, if there are any problems when you move out, you have photo proof of the condition of the home before you even moved in.

8. Paint before you move

Painted my bedroom this weekend! I used "Smoke" by Benjamin Moore

If you’re able to, go and paint before you move everything in. You won’t have to worry about clutter and painting around furniture.

9. Set up your kitchen and bathroom first
This is a tricky one, but well worth it. My official moving date is August 24, but we’ve already gone in and painted and set up our bathroom, and kitchen. Having the kitchen already set up makes it a lot easier when you’re hungry and need something quick to eat. If you’re like me and have family that bring food for moving day, it’s also nice to be able to have a free spot in the kitchen to put everything, and a clean fridge and stove to store stuff. When everything is said and done with the move, you’ll also be very glad that the bathroom is already set up so that you won’t be without toilet paper or a hot shower at the end of the day.

10. Kijiji
In Canada, the number one place to buy, sell or get rid of stuff if through Kijiji. If you are wanting to get rid of something you don’t want to bring with you, put it on Kijiji. You’re almost guaranteed to have it sold before you move. The same works if you’re looking for something. People sell and give away stuff all of the time, so if you’re looking for a new coffee table, desk, or dining room set check Kijiji first, because you may find a hidden treasure on there!

11. Groceries
Avoid going grocery shopping too close to your move, because you don’t want to have to transport food that could spoil. Some things a would suggest purchasing before the move though: granola bars, apples and a case of water. When you’re on the move and need something quick to sustain yourself, these are easy-to-eat snacks that will keep your energy up without all the fuss and muss.

12. Hire a sitter
Whether you're a parent of a human child, or a parent of a four-legged child like me, it's best to have someone take care of them on moving day. This way they still get the attention they need, and you can put your energy into focusing on the move.

13. Make sure everything is packed
I’ve been in the position when I’ve agreed to help someone move, and when I’d shown up at their house, they were still packing. Don’t be this person. Have everything packed and ready for moving day, your friends will thank you.

14. Pay your friends
If you’re asking friends to help you move, it might be nice to give them something as a thanks. Something as simple as buying a pizza for lunch, or giving them dibs to any of your stuff you were planning on getting rid of. My friends don’t drink, so instead of buying them beer, my roommate and I are planning on doing a “Tim’s run” for coffee in the morning.

15. Switch your ID
One of the biggest pains of moving is having to switch over all your ID. I’ve discovered something amazing though, if you’re Canadian like me, you can switch your ID online now! No more having to wait take a day off work to wait in five million lines! You can access the website here.

16. Make yourself at home
Once you’re all moved in, it’s time to relax and make your new place, your home. Moving gives you the perfect excuse to redecorate. Get some ideas off Pinterest and go wild.

Good luck!

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