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  • Writer's pictureKiera Malowitz

Moving Help: 10 Things You Should Do Now As You Plan Your Move

packing in progress for the bathroom

How many times have you moved in your lifetime? I hate to admit it but I lost count from my early years, however, I can tell you that since being with my husband the last 18 years, we have moved 7 times across 4 states. So here at Decluttered™, the goal of our moving help services and tips is to take away your stress! While we love to help our clients with EVERY aspect of their move, because we understand that many are on a budget, our moving services are a-la-carte which allows clients to pick and choose what they want help with based on their budget. This Spring and Summer we have had many moves (everyone is moving to Texas!) and because sometimes clients don’t find us until after they arrive to our markets in the Dallas-Ft Worth metroplex, San Antonio or New England, I wanted to share this list of 10 things you should do now for your move. 

1. Research Your New Location

Before moving, thoroughly research your new city or neighborhood. Most areas have a local town and/or state Facebook group, as well as various clubs like mom groups, book clubs, community groups etc. This will help you get to know the area but also on those Facebook groups, you can use the search option to find answers to your questions that many have asked before you. This is a great way to find what small businesses (like ours!) are recommended that you may need to seek their services. 

2. Budget Wisely

Moving can be expensive, so create a budget that includes moving costs, deposits, and any unexpected expenses. Factor in costs for packing materials, packing and unpacking services, concierge move services, movers, organizing product and travel expenses. Also, if you are buying property, you’ll want to budget for those extra general maintenance expenses that always come up when moving to a new home.

3. Moving Help: Declutter Before Packing

We ALWAYS tell clients to declutter before packing and start early! You want to move to your new home with all the things you love, not all the things you aren’t sure about what to do with. Take time to declutter and donate or sell items you no longer need or use. This will make packing easier and reduce moving costs substantially! While it’s hard to think about hiring a Professional Organizer to do this, it is worth the investment and many clients that have not done this regret it when they get to their new home. Be harsh in your decision making, especially if you are paying to move yourself and not being relocated for work. Another home organization pro-tip, consider the space you are moving to. If you are downsizing, then your stuff in turn needs to be downsized by a similar amount to the space. For those of you moving to an apartment or smaller space, here are more tips on organizing your space.

4. Label Your Boxes

Labeling boxes with their contents and destination room will make unpacking much smoother. You can be very literal in your move and even use the name of the person’s room like “Miles’ Bedroom” versus saying “Bedroom 2.” This makes it more personal and therefore easier to remember for the movers. Consider color-coding as this makes it really easy to follow with a key on what colors goes where, but also you would be surprised how many we’ve encountered that are color blind so numbering and labeling help for easy organization

moving signs by room for where boxes should go

Another tip for moving help, we like to do an “Unpack First” box or boxes. Depending on how much you have that qualifies for this, we’ve sometimes done an “Unpack First” for the kitchen and then the same for the kids areas and closets.

5. Notify Important Parties

Notify your utility companies, post office, banks, insurance, retirement accounts and subscriptions about your change of address. Make sure to update your address with government agencies and any relevant institutions. You can do this a couple days before you vacate your home or sooner as the USPS form asks for a start date on when items should be forwarded. Most of this can be done electronically as well but make sure to set time aside to work on this during the week in case you need to make calls.

6. Pack Essentials Separately

Pack a separate box or bag with essentials you'll need immediately upon arrival, such as toiletries, medications, a change of clothes, and important documents. We always have our clients pack like they are going on vacation, except to plan for an extended stay. This gives some flexibility and options during the influx of the move. 

7. Plan Your Moving Day (or let us of course!)

Plan the logistics of moving day in advance. Coordinate with movers or enlist friends, family or your local Decluttered™ team to help. Someone will need to be onsite with the movers which can include some of the packing, loading, and unloading time. Prepare for contingencies like bad weather or traffic delays. You want to work with companies that provide that flexibility as well. 

8. Research Moving Services

Many times our clients compare costs of movers to having professional organizers pack them. At Decluttered™, we typically pack all of your non-breakables which can include closets, bathrooms, living spaces and pieces of other areas. While we have packed breakables many times, the movers insurance will not cover these if they break them, because they did not pack them, and our insurance does not cover them because we did not move them, only packed them. We are always considering what is best for our clients and each situation is different. The important part of having Decluttered™ pack you is that it will be very organized in both the unloading and unpacking stage and move quickly because of this. If hiring movers, research moving companies thoroughly. Get estimates, read reviews, and check their credentials to ensure a smooth and reliable moving experience. We also help with this.

9. Take Care of Your Valuables

Transport valuable or sentimental items yourself if possible. If you are flying to your new destination, keep these on you versus in your suitcase. Also consider purchasing additional  insurance for valuable belongings during the move.

10. Take Time to Settle In

Moving can be stressful, so allow yourself time to settle into your new home and surroundings. We help with unpacking and organizing and work quickly, and many clients take advantage of the maintenance program during this time so that we can update any systems as you get settled in each area of your home. Your family has new habits and spaces to adjust to and those systems may need updating as time goes on.

Our job as Professional Organizers is to take away the stress and feeling of overwhelm in your home or small business, and when moving we will be right there to do the same! This list of 10 things to do now as you plan your move will help guide you through the process so that you feel more in control of the change that is coming. Having moving help is key! Moving is stressful but it is also exciting, and the Decluttered™ team makes it fun too! Happy moving!

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