Whether you’re moving an office space, a home, or a storage unit, moving can be super stressful. You have to worry about packing in an organized way to make unpacking easier, picking competent movers who understand your individual needs, occupying your employees/kids/pets during the actual move, and, most importantly, the monetary cost. Here are 7 easy ways to keep your move organized and cost-effective to calm your mind (and budget).
1. Start Packing Early
Chances are, you can probably start your packing a good 3-4 months before you even need to move. This will eliminate last-minute rushed pack jobs AND make your unpacking more organized and easy to deal with. Here’s how to do it: 3-4 months before your move, start packing the things that are out of season or only used very occasionally. For example, if you’re moving during the summer, go ahead and pack up those winter coats as soon as spring comes calling. You’ll also be able to pack up your Christmas and Halloween decorations, your snow/ice shovel, and Christmas-themed wrapping paper.
I know, it’s SUPER hard. But we can do this together. As you pack each item, make a habit of asking yourself if you’ve used it in the past year. If you haven’t, you probably either (a) won’t ever use it again, or (b) can buy or rent a replacement on the off-chance that you ever do need that item again in the future. For example, if your youngest child is 3 years old, go ahead and donate her baby clothes. If you do have another child a few years from now, you can always purchase new clothes for her, or even take hand-me-downs from your friends. It’s not worth the stress of moving all of that stuff just because there’s a chance you might need it again down the line.
3. Use Our Boxes and Packing Supplies
It may sound like we’re just trying to milk money out of you, but this actually will end up saving you time and money on your move, and that’s why we recommend our supplies. If you use free boxes from grocery stores and liquor stores, you’ll save a few dollars by not buying them. However, those boxes have been used, filled with moisture (and possibly bugs), and bent up during transit already. There’s a reason stores and vendors don’t reuse them–they fall apart pretty easily. They also don’t come in uniform, standard box sizes, which can add to your movers’ hourly rate as they spend time analyzing the best way to lift cumbersome boxes and play Tetris while trying to pack the moving truck. If you need another reason to use our stuff, look at our selection. We have special double-thick dish boxes that come with dividers to keep each dish separate, picture/mirror boxes that fit to the size of your decor, mattress bags made specifically to keep dirt and bugs out of your bed, and wardrobe boxes that allow you to simply lift and hang your closet clothes onto a bar inside the box. Our specialized materials keep your items much safer than used, free boxes, which can cut down on costs and the stress of replacing items that break during your move.
4. Ask Tough Questions
When selecting a moving method, be sure to ask your hard questions up front to potential vendors. If you think you want to go with a rented truck that you can load yourself, ask about the truck’s maintenance, pest control, and mileage. If you think you’ll hire movers, ask the company if they employ full-time movers, whether the movers are background- and drug-tested, how the movers are trained, and whether the company is insured. The customer service representatives that you speak with are used to getting those tough questions, and they won’t be offended if you ask them.
5. Make a Floor Plan
You’re paying movers for wherever they place your items at your drop-off location, whether it’s the correct placement or not. So make sure they don’t make any mistakes–use the floor plan of your new home or office to map out where you want the major furniture pieces to go. Also, label the rooms on the floor plan with the same labels you use to mark your boxes. This way, the movers can cut down on time by knowing exactly where they’re going with each item before they even see the house.
6. Make a Day-of-the-Move Kit
It’s going to be a hectic, busy day. Put together a small, easy-to-carry box that has everything you’ll need the very first day in your new home or office, like toilet paper, Clorox wipes, and pajamas. You can take this box with you in the car instead of giving it to your movers, and then you’ll already know where the essentials are. Also, put together a small folder of the papers you’ll need for your move: Your floor plan, the moving company’s contact info, the original estimate of the move cost, any contracts you’ve received from the moving company, and your check for the movers. Then, if anyone asks you for paperwork or you need to make a last-minute change to your schedule, everything will be in the same place.
7. Keep the Kids Occupied
Whether you have children, pets, or employees who will be around on the day of the move, go ahead and decide exactly what you want them to be doing on Moving Day. Have coloring books for your kids, or send them to the grandparents’ for the weekend. Fill the crate with some new bones for your dog, or board him for the day. Have your employees plan to work from home, or put them to work and let them know they need to wear work clothes that day. This way, no one will be underfoot during an already-stressful day.
Stress about an upcoming move is natural. But planning ahead and being prepared can definitely help alleviate that burden.