If you're like the 13 percent of Americans moving this year (and especially if that move will be happening once school is out), you're probably starting to panic a little about all that needs to be done. As with all things, you just need to plan. Here are some things you might not think of that will be sure to make the move smoother.
- Begin sorting through mail a month ahead of the move to figure out who you'll need to notify of your address change. Remember to consider magazines and other widely-spaced deliveries that may not fall in your "month ahead" plan.
- Use the scraps from your shredder to pack items. Shred papers you don't need and shred newspaper; this material is perfect for packing away delicate items, like dishes.
- Don't waste your time packing clothes. Use another option that makes packing and unpacking easier. For instance, leave your clothes hanging and wrap rubber bands around the hook of the hangers, then pull a plastic bag over the top to protect them. Use wardrobe boxes for bulkier items, such as comforters and winter coats.
- Resist the temptation to simply throw items into boxes helter-skelter. The catch-all "miscellaneous" is a bane to movers everywhere. Be specific so you can be efficient in unpacking. Use a color code for rooms where the boxes should go (stickers on the boxes and doors of the correlating room), thus helping moving help outside your family to find the proper room.
- Get professional movers for complicated, valuable things like pianos. Professional movers are expensive, but your item cost more, and you'll want to make sure it arrives safely.
When Moving to Another City
- A month in advance, gather all family members' (and pets') medical and dental records, including recent X-rays and prescription info. Ask your doctor for recommendations in your new area. If you're moving out of state, make insurance arrangements, as you most certainly can't transfer your current insurance to another state.
- Make a list of utility and service companies you need to contact with dates of when your service can be shut off (gas, electricity, internet, etc.). Arrange for necessary utilities to start in your new home before you move.
- Decide what needs to travel with you and plan for a couple extra days of living out of a suitcase. Better safe than sorry. Once you've established what will move with you, make sure it all fits by packing it into the car or truck you'll be driving. Adjust as needed.
- Make a list of everything you have borrowed and loaned out. Return borrowed items and collect your items from others. Give a pick-up deadline to anyone whose stuff you are storing.