When planning a move the more organized you are during the process the more smoother it will go. There are many steps you can take to reduce your stress level and the chaos that typically is part of any move.
Now having said that, when we bought the house we are currently living in, we had about two weeks from the time we sold our old house to pack up and move into our new home. It was nuts, but thankfully the beauty of using containers made a particularly daunting task somewhat easier. When you use a few hundred containers throughout your house all you have to do to pack it up is pick up the container and pack it up in a box with the contents still in tack. This way on the other end all you have to do is take out the container and place in your new drawer/closet/shelf, etc. Instant organizing!
If you haven’t been as obsessed about using containers as say some freak lady who’s blog you happen to read regularly (who could that be?) then my suggestion is the more you can organize and purge before you move the more you will appreciate it on the other end. As you are packing items up, ask yourself, when was the last time I used this? If your answer was over a year ago, then do yourself a favor and get rid of it. Don’t waste your time and money moving it across town or worse across country. Be realistic and ruthless.
The other bit of advice I have is something my mom did when they moved to Ontario last year. She labelled each box not only with the room name but also a number. Then on a master list she had the number of the box and the contents of what was inside that corresponding box. This is particularly helpful if you are unable to unpack everything right away, making it quick and easy to find what you are looking for.
Preparing a moving checklist of tasks needed to be done before you move is a good idea. Save time and download one from the internet to help you stay on track. This one that I found looked pretty thorough.
Rather than re-invent the wheel the following is a really great online article with plenty of helpful tips for an organized move. Take a look:
“It’s Just a Sea of Boxes…”
Helpful Hints for an Organized Move
For many, moving is an exciting event. New home, new job, new environment—the adventures are just around the corner. But, for others, moving can be one of life’s most stressful events. Besides feeling excited, you may also be feeling sad, anxious, and overwhelmed. For various reasons, moving can be an unpleasant experience.
Being organized can alleviate some of the anguish and stress associated with moving. Here are some helpful organizing hints to use while getting ready for ‘Moving Day.’
Create a home for your paperwork
A binder with pocket dividers will work well for the storage and retrieval of all your move-related papers such as contracts, driving directions to new home, and packing lists. Use the pockets for holding wallpaper samples, new address labels, information on your new neighborhood, and any other papers pertinent to your move.
Being Able to Find Important Papers Will Save You Time
Purge before you move
Moving is a great opportunity to see what you own, determine what you would like to take with you and figure out what you can leave behind. Many movers charge by the box. You don’t want to have to pay movers to transport boxes of stuff you never use and don’t need anymore.
Purging Before Moving Will Save You Money and SPACE
Budget your packing time
How long will it take for you to pack up your entire apartment or house? On average, it takes approximately 2-3 months to carefully pack the contents of a home. Start by packing things you don’t use very often or that are decorative such as knick-knacks or holiday dishes. Set a goal to pack 5-10 boxes a week. This will give you the time to pack leisurely as opposed to feverishly…
Setting Packing Goals Will Save You Time
Pack by room
Would it be easy to find your stuff if you randomly threw it into boxes? I don’t think so, either…Developing a packing system is the key to quickly locating and placing your belongings in their new home.
Create a floor plan of your new home as a reference for unloading and unpacking (this can be kept in your binder). Mark each room on the plan with a specific letter or number. You will then write the corresponding letter/number on the boxes that go into that particular room. It is recommended to jot down the general contents of the box as well. This will make it easy for the movers to put your boxes where they belong and for you to find exactly what you need.
If room A is the kitchen, the boxes would be labeled:
Room B=Master Bathroom
Boxes for the master bathroom would be labeled:
B-Shower Curtain & Hooks
B-Light Bulbs & New Fixture
Create a box labeled: ‘We’re Here!’ This is a box of items that you will need as soon as you get to your new home. Figure out what you and your family will require on that first day or two in your new home such as: kids favorite toys, paper plates for take-out food, doggie snacks, etc. and pack those things in this box.
Packing by Room Will Save You Time and Lessen Stress
Make it visible
Mark boxes on all sides in a thick black marker (get yourself a few of them—they may dry out after much usage.) Yes, this is a pain, but when your boxes are stacked high and wide, it will make the process of finding what you need much easier. Spending a few minutes labeling the boxes before you move will save you hours of time once you arrive at your new home.
Coding Boxes Will Save You Time and Alleviate Stress
Bonus Packing Tips:
1. Pack heavy items (such as books) in small boxes and light items (such as your Pez collection) in big boxes.
2. Take advantage of FREE packing materials such as…
- Supermarket flyers and glossy inserts that come with the Sunday paper for stuffing boxes
- Boxes from a liquor store (Boxes from the supermarket are not recommended because they could have food products in them.)
- Suitcases can be filled with clothes or other items for the move.
- Your sheets, blankets and towels can be used to wrap your breakables.
Article by Stacey Agin Murray, professional organizer and owner of Organized Artistry, LLC. Visit http://www.organizedartistry.com for your FREE e-list of ‘Top Ten Tips for Organized Living.’