Saying that proper organization is the key to a successful house move is quite an understatement. In reality, getting organized and then staying organized when moving is the key, the lock, the door and the path that will take you straight to the new home with minimum efforts and zero problems along that way.
Ultimately, the best way to get organized for a move is to use an exceptional moving checklist – a detailed to-do list that will guide you on your relocation journey from start to finish.
Yes, having a printable moving checklist by your side will improve greatly your move organization. Nevertheless, there are also some other great tricks to stay organized when you move to another home.
Without further ado, here are the top 7 ways to stay organized when moving.
#1. Start organizing your move early
One of the best ways to stay organized when moving is to have enough time to finish all the pre-move tasks in an un-rushed way. It’s important to be able to think things through without having to make any hasty decisions due to lack of sufficient time.
And one excellent way to get time to be your ally is to start the move preparations as soon as you possibly can – that is, immediately after the house move has become only a matter of time.
Once the decision to move house has been made, there isn’t any time to postpone the inevitable. By securing more hours and even days to work on your relocation agenda, you will also keep the stress levels within healthy limits. In case you didn’t know, moving to another home is one of the 3 top stressful events that can happen in your life.
Remember that it’s never too early to start getting ready to move out. In the best case scenario, you will have at least a month (approx. 4 weeks) to organize your move. What’s more, proper move organization will lead to good time management, which in turn will also enable you to get ready to move out in less time.
#2. Create an inventory of all your possessions
Another great way to get organized for a move is to know exactly what it is that you will be moving. Proper moving organization requires you to have a good plan and a fool-proof strategy before you start work on your due tasks. And, as you should know well by now, throwing all of your possessions randomly into random cardboard boxes just won’t yield any good results.
One of your priorities when moving house is to create an inventory of all your household items – just go into each room and then make a list of the things found there. Then, while creating that inventory sheet, you should keep sorting out and dividing your possessions into 4 major categories: Move, Sell, Donate and Throw away.
- Move. These are the things you’ll be taking with you regardless of the time you’ll need to pack them and the cost you’ll pay to move them.
- Sell. Why not sell some of the items you leave behind to help out your budget? This is especially true for items you don’t need but are still worth something.
- Donate. Your junk may easily become somebody else’s treasure. Do consider donating some of your possessions to be used by less fortunate people.
- Throw away. Some things will have surely become useless in time, so they’ll only be good for one thing – recycling.
Read on to learn why decluttering your home before moving out will only bring benefits for you.
#3. Declutter your home
Without a doubt, one of the best ways to get organized for a big move is to get rid of all the clutter in your home before you start packing up your items. Moving experts are unanimous that if you haven’t used an item in over a year, then you don’t really need it, so it’s time to let it go.
In fact, the event of moving to a new home is the perfect opportunity to reduce the number of your belongings and leave only the things that 1) you intend to use in the foreseeable future, 2) you really like and want to keep, 3) have sentimental value for you, and 4) are not irreparably broken or worn out.
Creating an inventory of your possessions was the first step to getting organized during a move, now it’s time to finish the decluttering job properly. Save transportation money, packing time and new-home space by leaving only the items that are worth moving to the new residence.
So, once you’ve set aside the belongings you won’t take with you,
- SELL online or organize a profitable garage sale for the things that still have any commercial value;
- GIVE AWAY to family members and friends who may need any of the items you’re leaving behind;
- DONATE to charitable organizations; or
- RECYCLE the useless stuff nobody will ever need again.
#4. Keep your moving paperwork in a binder
In most cases, a house move generates a lot of paperwork. So, one of the best strategies for staying organized during a move is to keep all of your moving paperwork in one secure place – preferably a binder that you can have with you at all times.
Remember that it’s important to keep your moving paperwork safe even after the move is over (in case any disputes arise with your mover). Such documents include moving cost estimates, order of service, bill of lading, home inventory sheets, moving checklists, floor plans, list of donations, school and medical records, financial documents including all types of receipts, and any other moving company paperwork imaginable.
Of course, the idea of getting organized when moving house is also about protecting all important documents that are not move-related. If there is enough space in your moving binder, you are strongly advised to also keep there
- personal documents (birth certificates, marriage and death certificates, divorce and separation documents, passports, driving licenses, etc.);
- employment documents (labor contracts, evaluation reports, etc.);
- housing documents (property deeds, rental agreements, mortgage documents, rent receipts, utilities bills, etc.);
- legal documents (wills, Power of attorney documents, etc.);
- financial documents (bank statements, payroll slips; debit and credit card receipts, tax receipts, etc.);
- motor vehicle documents (vehicle registration, auto insurance documents, receipts, etc.), and so on.
#5. Come up with a good packing strategy
Our tips for an organized move come to packing – the most time-consuming and labor-intensive task in your moving agenda. To stay organized during the entire packing process is a challenge in itself, so you’re going to need to adopt and use a good packing strategy that will work great for you.
To organize your move like a professional and to handle successfully the tough task of packing for a move, you’re going to need to familiarize yourself with several key packing strategies:
- Start packing immediately. Don’t waste any precious time thinking about how you need to start packing your items soon. Do not put off packing for a later time, do it now.
- Follow a packing timeline. Initiating the packing job is easier said than done. How do you pack up an entire home? Where do you start packing for a move? Follow a good packing timeline to use efficiently every single hour of the time prior to Moving day.
- Know where to start packing. Your own packing checklist will guide you from start to finish, and the start should always be from the areas in your home that are the hardest to pack – the storage areas such as basement, garage, attic, walk-in closets and guest rooms.
- Get the right packing supplies. Proper packing materials are must-have for a successful packing experience. Make sure you get enough moving boxes, packing paper, bubble wrap and packing tape before you commence the job of packing up your things for a move. And don’t forget that you can save good money by getting free moving boxes.
#6. Pack your essentials last
Staying organized when moving will always be challenging, even if you do happen to be following a great packing and moving checklist. It’s never an easy thing to put all of your belongings into cardboard boxes and move them to a new home that may be hundreds or thousands of miles away.
And while it’s vital that you start packing for your move as early as possible, you will still need all of your essential items right up until the day of the move. Be mindful that essentials such as kitchen utensils, bed linen, bathroom items, prescription medications, and other important things should be packed last of all simply because you will need them until the very last moment.
Stay organized while moving by packing one or several open-first boxes full of all the essentials that will help you survive the first night and day at the new place until the rest of your household items get delivered. These essentials boxes must stay with you during the actual move and should be the last things you load into your own vehicle.
#7. Label your boxes properly
Labeling your boxes correctly is the perfect example of how to get organized for a move. With so many cardboard boxes that look rather similar or even identical, it’s fairly easy to lose track of what’s inside each one unless you clearly write the content on each container.
One rookie mistake that some people tend to make is to think they will be able to remember what they pack in each cardboard box during the packing task. What you should remember, though, is that the home moving process puts people under a lot of stress, and the more stress there is, the easier it is to forget things even if someone is blessed with an infallible memory.
How to stay organized while moving? Take a black marker and write down the contents, the destination room and any special handling instructions /FRAGILE, HANDLE WITH CARE/ on the top and on one of the box sides. Labeling each box will take a minute or so of your time but that is nothing compared to the time it will save you at the time of unpacking the freshly-delivered boxes in the new home.
When labeling your boxes as part of your effort to stay organized when you move, you can select between two proven box labeling methods: color codes or numbers.
Using the color-coded system (different colors for different rooms) is simple yet effective enough to be the preferred labeling system for most people. Nevertheless, using numbers to label each box can save you time because you won’t have to write the contents and destination room on each container. Thus said, you will still need to create a master inventory list and make sure you don’t lose it during the move.
Bonus advice: Use a free move organization app
There’s no denying that technology has made our lives easier and more convenient. Is there a reason why we shouldn’t use high-tech strategic tricks to get and stay organized during a move as well? No, there isn’t.
There are a number of excellent moving apps out there that will help you introduce order and structure into your own house move. From letting you find a reputable moving company to helping you inventory your entire home and providing you with a detailed moving checklist, the best moving apps will quickly give you the assistance and guidance you need to finish your household move with flying colors.
Take a look at the top 5 move organization apps that are 100% free to download and use on your mobile device. Technology is meant to help us along the way, even when that way leads to a new home.