1. Make yourself two “care package”; one for the old home and one for the new. Each care package should contain: toilet paper, paper towels, dish soap, sponge, sharpie, snack baggies, rags, Tylenol or ibuprofen, bandaids, phone chargers, paper plates, plastic cups, plastic cutlery, pet and kid essentials. You can get by with one and transport from one home to the other with you, but often times you are back and forth quite a bit and will leave it behind, which defeats the purpose of having it.
2. Pack a suitcase with at least 2 or 3 days of clothing for each person in your home. This way after moving, if you don’t get unpacked as quickly as you anticipated, you won’t have trouble getting through the day. Include shower essentials such as a shower curtain and towels. Make sure to consider the pets!
3. Pick a designated box or gym bag to put all cords and small parts of items.
4. Put all screws or extra small parts to items in snack baggies and label them with a sharpie. Put them in the cords container.
5. Label your boxes by room and include a short description of what is in the box. Do this on the side rather then the top of the boxes, so they can be read even when stacked. If you have the patience and time, two sides are definitely better than one.
6. Print signs with what each room is for and hang them on the doors of each room at the new house. This will help the movers, or your lucky friends and family, know what room to put each box in which will make unpacking much easier.
7. If you have the luxury of a few days overlapping between the two homes, move kitchen and bathroom boxes on one day and get everything put away, so your new home feels more functional more quickly.
8. If you have to be out of one home and into the other on the same day, I recommend moving out 24 hours beforehand to allow room for error and a smooth transition. Then you can close early at the new house and get the essentials situated pretty quickly.
9. These are my best practices from seeing a lot of transactions and moves, as well as moving a lot myself. Each home has a different lifestyle and will require some different preparation to make things as smooth and stress free as possible. I recommend sitting down with everyone in your home at the beginning of the process and brainstorming using these tips as a guide to personalize your own moving strategy. Consider your normal daily activities and add to it as you think of things to the process.
10. Know upfront things will not go perfectly. Someone will get hurt, something will break, or some other myriad of things unplanned will happen. Know that you prepared the best you can and expect the unexpected. Having fluidity in your moving plan will reduce the amount of stress more than anything else on this list.
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