Moving to a new home is just like any important endeavour: if you are well prepared, things will probably go just fine. However, if you have no idea what you are doing, and you took no time to get ready for it, you will probably have to deal with issues and chaos.
Fortunately for us all, the Internet can provide us with an endless wealth of information, tips and checklists that will simplify our next move. This moving guide contains fourteen moving and packing essentials that will help you plan and execute a smooth, pleasant move.
1. Moving timeline
If you don’t know where to get started, a moving timeline is an essential tool that will help you figure it out, and stay in control of your move. It lists everything you should do to get ready for your move, and gives you an idea of when you should do it.
When you have a detailed moving timeline, all the right packing supplies, and an essentials box that contains everything you will need for your first few days in your new home, all you need is some motivation, and perhaps a few enthusiastic friends to help you out. Ultimately, your moving timeline will help you stay in control.
2. Moving essentials box
If this isn’t your first move, you know that unpacking all your boxes and putting everything where it belongs can take some time. Prepare to live in a cluttered home full of stacks of boxes for at least a few days.
To help make things easier, you need to pack an essentials box. This is simply a box that you will finish packing right before your move, and you will open it as soon as you get in your new home. It should contain everything you will need during your first few hours, or even your first few days in your new environment.
In your essentials box, you should put:
- Toilet paper & paper towels
- Dish soap, a dishcloth and a dishtowel
- Dishes, glasses and utensils
- Beverages & snacks
- Everything you need to prepare at least a few simple meals
- A small first-aid kit
- Shampoo, conditioner and soap
- Toothbrushes and toothpaste
Remember that preparation is key if you want a smooth and pleasant move!
3. Yard sale
Around two months before your moving day, get rid of any clothes or items you don’t want or don’t need anymore, so you don’t have to move them. Donate them, or have a yard sale. Make an inventory of the valuable items you want to move and determine their value.
4. Professional moving services
Around one month before your moving day, decide whether you want to move on your own or to hire professional movers for help. If you want to hire movers, ask for an estimate from a few different companies, and choose the best one.
Arrange the payment for your movers, and make sure you have cash on hand to tip them on moving day. Confirm the date of your move with your movers, and make sure they have your contact information as well as the directions to your new home.
5. Real estate & financial services
This is also the time to finalize your real estate transactions. In addition, contact your insurance company to see if you will need to make any changes to your policies. Plus, you should contact your utility companies so they will know your new address, and when you will need their services to be disconnected and installed in your new home.
You should also notify your bank, your credit card company, and your friends and relatives of your new address, and make sure your mail, magazines and newspapers will be sent at your new home.
6. Packing supplies
Around two weeks before your moving day, start assembling the essential packing supplies you will need, and start packing your belongings. Unless you want to rely on your professional movers to pack all your belongings for you, you will need to equip yourself with packing supplies. Your collection of packing supplies will make everything easier.
You should give yourself plenty of time to finish packing your belongings. Once you finished packing your essentials box, go over the last details with your movers. Make sure you did not forget anything, lock the windows, turn off the lights, lock the doors, and say goodbye to your old home.
7. Moving boxes
You can purchase boxes from your moving company or from an office supply store. You should also be able to get some boxes for free from your grocery store: all you have to do is ask. Beware of huge boxes, as they will be difficult to lift when they are full.
8. Moving tape
Tape is one of the moving and packing essentials that you definitely need. Packing tape and tape dispensers will make it easy for you to seal your boxes so your belongings will be safe during their trip in the moving truck. Regular transparent tape can also be useful to tape labels to each box.
9. Box cutter
A box cutter can have a few different purposes. If you want to create partitions to protect your glassware inside their box, for example, your box cutter will allow you to easily cut pieces of cardboard. It will also allow you to quickly open your boxes when it’s time to unpack.
10. Packing paper or bubble wrap
Packing paper and bubble wrap are both essentials that can be used to stuff boxes, or to wrap and protect glassware, dishware, and other fragile items. Newspaper can do the trick, but be sure whatever you are wrapping with it will not get stained by the paper’s ink.
11. Labels and a permanent marker
If you don’t want to write directly on your boxes with a permanent marker, get labels. Colourful labels, one colour for each room, for example, will make it easier to get organized. Be sure to put one label on top of each box, and one label on two opposite sides.
12. Stretch wrap
Plastic stretch wrap clings to itself, so it can be perfect to protect large pieces of furniture without damaging them. It’s also useful to secure doors and drawers on furniture, so they won’t open or fall while in transit.
13. Small plastic bags
Small plastic bags, especially the ones that can be sealed, are ideal moving and packing essentials to keep small items together. For example, if you have to dismantle a large bookshelf, put the screws you need to put it back together in a small plastic bag, and tape this bag to one part of the furniture so you won’t lose it.
14. A basic tool kit
A basic tool kit that contains at least a small hammer, pliers, a measuring tape, and a few different screwdrivers will help you dismantle furniture, make small repairs, and get installed in your new home.