How to Stay Organized During Your Move
Moving can be chaotic, making it hard to keep everything organized. Maintaining order during your move will ensure that things go smoothly, making the experience overall easier on you. Wheaton has put together the following list of the best ways to stay organized to have a seamless move:
- Prepare Early
Preparing early is a great way to limit the stress that comes with last minute packing. You will get a chance to figure out everything before move details start getting stressful: How many boxes can come with you as opposed to on the moving van? What important items need to fit into those boxes? Which of your items is fragile? What special packing do they require? Answer all these questions before the driver starts calling about scheduling, and you’ll be cool as a cucumber, no matter the temperature.
Basic moving costs depend on the weight of your items and how far they’re going, so the easiest way to lower the cost of your move is to leave behind items that no longer serve you. Decluttering is the best way to avoid packing unnecessary items – keeping costs down and leaving more space for living in your new home.
Decluttering while you pack is a great way to stay efficient during your move. Touch every item just once as you sort through and don’t second guess your initial decision. Remember, you can keep good memories while losing the stuff that reminds you of them. More on that from our friend Matt Paxton!
3.) Organize While Still in Your Current House
Organizing before you even begin packing is a great way to gauge how much you are really going to need for your new place. Organizing will also make the unpacking process so much easier. You will be able to visualize where you want things in your new house and what you are going to do with them.
Before you pack, make room for several piles, including a “first box” pile, a “sell/donate” pile, and piles for each room in the new home. Another pile to save time on the other end of the move is a “storage” pile: put off-season clothes, sporting equipment, decorations, etc., in that pile so you know not to spend time unpacking it right away in your new home.
As you consider each item, ask yourself where it will fit in your new place. If you can’t think of a good spot, toss it in the sell/donate pile and move on.
It’s easy to lose track of what you are packing and where you are putting items. Sometimes throwing things into a box is the easiest, but unfortunately, it’s asking for quite the challenge when you get to your new place.
Jot down the name of each pile on a sticky note as you organize. After you finish sorting items, label boxes and cartons with the name of the pile, i.e. room name. Number the boxes as well and list the main items or category of items included in each (office 1 – desk contents; library 7 – kids’ books). Pro tip: have whoever in the family packed the box initial it so when you have questions you go to the right person for answers.
Labelling all your cartons will make it easier for your movers to put boxes in the right rooms and for you to determine which and how many boxes, if any, are missing.
5.) Set goals
Setting goals when you are moving is a great way to lay out what you want to accomplish and how quickly you are going to do it. Goals give you incentive to get things done, especially if you’re someone who loves to cross items off a list. Writing down your goals will allow you to work at your best ability and feel in control during your move.
Examples of moving goals:
- Organize 3 rooms into piles by Friday.
- Have the kids pick which toys and books to get rid of this weekend.
- Empty the entire downstairs two weeks before the move so we have time to paint.
- Visit all doctors’ offices Thursday to transfer records.
Your goals will be personal to you; make sure you let everyone in the family take ownership so it’s truly a team effort.
6.) Keep Track of What is Already Packed
You don’t want to forget what you have and what you still need to pack. When moving to a new place, you’ll probably buy new items for it, but you don’t want to buy what you may already have! Keep track of what you pack to avoid this.
An easy way to keep track is to take pictures of the labels as you finish packing each box. Save the photos in a “packing” album on your phone for easy access. If you remembered to have the family member who packed the box write their name or initials on the label, you know exactly who to ask when wondering if “office supplies” included both staples and a stapler or if you need to add either to your shopping list.
7.) Keep Valuables with You
This tip goes back to that “first box” pile and what you can fit with you in your car or carry-on. Items like medication, identification documents, cash, and anything else irreplaceable should stay with you during the move. Make sure you keep those uber valuable items close to you to minimize stress.
Hand-in-hand with setting goals for your move, making a schedule is a simple way to make sure everything will get done on time. This is also a great way to ensure that you won’t get overwhelmed, and you will be able to space things out accordingly. If you have a busy life, maybe pack one room a day to still get it done.
Be sure to talk with your mover about their availability and communication plans. Write those in on your schedule, so if you don’t hear from them, you reach out.
9.) Create a Plan
Implementing a plan of action is a great way to succeed during a move. Plan out when your moving date is and when you need to have everything packed. Communication is key to a smooth move, so talk with your mover about plans on their end and keep in touch throughout the process so your plans align.
Wheaton has created a great tool for this. In your plan, figure out when your movers are coming and what you want them to accomplish and help you with while they are there. This is also a great time to find friends or family who are willing and happy to help to make things easier!
10.) Set a Budget
Moving can be expensive, and often there can be unexpected expenses, for instance due to travel hiccups on your way to the new home. Set a budget when moving to figure out how much you will be spending and how you are going to utilize your money. This is a great way to organize your finances during your move. There are many ways to save money, therefore research them and figure out what a good budget will be. Remember, you may thank yourself for spending a little bit extra to get more help! These tips are sure to make your move much more pleasant and efficient. You will be able to be organized and thank yourself later for taking the time to make your move easier. If you’re looking for more help with your cross-country move, call Wheaton today!