Moving – just the mention of that word can send you spiraling into stress mode. It probably brings back memories of lugging around boxes for your friends in exchange for pizza and drinks. The thought of packing up your entire home into boxes and moving across the country (or even across the street) can make anybody feel stressed. But with the right tips on moving, the process doesn’t have to be painful. Read on to learn our best advice on packing and moving, and you’ll be all moved into your new place in no time.
Declutter Before You Start Packing
The task of packing up and moving all of your possessions can be daunting, to say the least. While the thought of adding decluttering to your to-do list may not sound all that appealing, it will help you out in the long run.
By decluttering before you pack, you’ll have less items to pack and then unpack later. This means less work for you and less money spent on packing supplies. Decluttering your home also helps with staging your home to sell as buyers can picture themselves living in your home easier with less of your belongings on display.
Take some time to declutter and purge your belongings before packing them up to take to your new home. Decide what you really want in your new space, what you can’t live without, and don’t be afraid to leave behind what no longer serves you.
Find Free Packing Supplies
Want to save some cash while prepping for your move? You can usually find free boxes pretty easily. A great place to start is your local grocery store. Milk boxes are very sturdy and usually have handles that make them easy to carry around. Ask a manager when the best time would be for you to come pick up boxes. They may have a weekly delivery every Tuesday afternoon, for example. Not all stores may give out boxes, but this is one tip that’s worked for me for a couple of moves now.
Another tip for free packing supplies is to save boxes and packing materials from your own online shopping. Stash any boxes that come in that are a good size and in good condition. Save the protective material too – heavy duty paper, packing peanuts, bubble wrap, etc.
Finally, be sure to ask family and friends to hold on to their unwanted boxes for you too. Between yourself, family and friends, and your local stores, you may find yourself with plenty of packing supplies for your move.
Buy Packing Supplies
If you’d rather save time than money, opt to buy your packing supplies instead of spending time hunting down boxes. You can purchase different sized moving boxes at stores like Lowe’s, Home Depot, Walmart, etc. Don’t forget other supplies you’ll need as well. Some helpful moving materials include:
Boxes of different sizes
You can also choose to purchase bins/tubs instead of disposable boxes. This would be the priciest do-it-yourself route, but it does come with advantages. If you use clear tubs, you can easily see through them to see what’s inside when it comes time to unpack. You can also store the bins to use in the future for storing things like seasonal decorations, outgrown kids’ clothes, etc.
Spending a little money on packing supplies can save you time and stress, and may be especially worth it if you’re facing a quick move and need to be out of your house fast.
Create a System
A good packing and moving system can be as simple or as complex as you’d like it to be. One simple yet effective strategy is to use color coded labels to keep your move organized. Kitchen items get a blue label, home office gets a red label, etc. You can buy a large pack of colored stickers (think ones you might see at a yard sale) and place them on each box as you pack. Then when you (or the movers) unload boxes, you can see a blue sticker and know it needs to head into the kitchen.
A classic binder is another way to stay organized while you move, and to make sure no important papers get lost in the shuffle. Designate a 3 ring binder to hold important papers like contracts, mortgage paperwork, and inventories of important items. Knowing you have everything in an easy-to-access place can help take some stress off your mind.
You can find tons of free checklists for moving online. For more tips on keeping your move organized, this blog has some excellent ideas.
Find a Moving Company
The most hands-off approach to moving: hiring it out. Finding a good moving company can save you lots of work and stress when it comes time to move. If you have the extra cash, here are some things to look for when hiring a moving company:
Good reputation and reviews
They’re licensed and insured
When searching for a good moving company in your area, start by asking family and friends for recommendations. This can give you a heads up on movers who may not have a strong web presence. You can also ask your Realtor for their recommendation. Your real estate agent has connections and industry expertise, so be sure to ask for their advice.
Have a Plan for Your Next Home
When you’re in the thick of moving out of your current home, it can be easy to put off thinking about your next home. You may be excited to move, but you aren’t ready to think about the hassle of unpacking everything just yet. And that’s OK. With the good packing system you put in place, the logistics of moving into your new home will be a breeze.
If you’re still unsure of where exactly you’ll be moving or what your next step is, take a pause from packing and start dreaming of your new home. Will you be staying in the same area? Moving a long distance? In many cases, your Realtor can help get you plugged in to resources where you’re going, and they probably have connections all over the country. Ask if they have any colleagues they can recommend in the area you’re moving to. If you need some help with finding the perfect Realtor for you, read our tips here.
Moving is never a fun task, but you can do it without losing your sanity by following the tips we discussed here. By decluttering your home first thing, finding free packing supplies (or buying them to save time and stress), creating a packing system, finding a good moving company, and planning ahead for your next move, you’ll be out of your current home and into your next without too much hassle.
If you’re ready to list or buy your next home in the greater Sacramento area, let our team of real estate professionals help you out. Click here to get in touch, learn more about us, and browse some available properties. We can’t wait to get to know you!