pinterest is a wonderful, beautiful land full of moving guides. to say i'm obsessed with it is a bit of an understatement, govna. (easy a? anyone? love that movie) i'm pretty well-rehearsed in this whole packing and moving thing, seeing as how i've done it like 12 times now. at least. but i still like finding and utilizing new tips to make the process as efficient, painless, and budget-friendly as possible. so far, i've been working off my own memories of moving, but i started searching for even more ideas to share with you.
first, here's 10 things i've done to help my packing and moving process:
1. declutter - if you get rid of it, you don't have to pack it. so just think about that and ask yourself "do i like this enough to clean it, pack it, move it, unpack it, and put it back?" if the answer is no, donate. don't spend your time and money moving something you don't care about. if you have enough in the donate pile, many donation places will even come pick it up.
2. buy used boxes - it's less than half of what you'd spend on new boxes at some place like office depot. they certainly aren't 'dirty' either, mine look practically new. they are boxes that were used to move corporate offices or paper goods. never anything stained or greasy. and the companies that sell them check everything super carefully and don't re-sell boxes over and over. one and done. (here in chicago, i cannot say enough good things about moving boxes now who has same day delivery, awesome prices, and will even come back and swap boxes out if a certain size isn't working for you.) you can find free boxes too, but i don't have a car and definitely don't feel like putting that kind of work into it.
3. this. which makes me insane but was worth every second. you know you're a little jealous. but at least do some labeling or listing with the boxes so you know what room it goes in and what's in the box. if you have a lot of boxes, print out labels instead. make sure to put them on the sides, not the top, so you can still see it even if the boxes are stacked up.
4. start early to get movers quotes - john and his brother will have no trouble moving my boxes and smaller pieces of furniture in john's pickup. actually, they both have pickups. score. but i prefer to hire (insured) movers for big things like my tv, couch, and bed, since i'm moving into a place with only stairs. and since i'm moving at the end of the month, like most renters, prices sky rocket. start early to find the best quote and try to work with the landlord to get in on an off day, like a week day that's a few days before or after the 1st of the month.
5. use what you have - wrap breakables in towels and blankets and save yourself the cost of packing paper and bubble wrap. if you're moving some things yourself, you can use your usual baskets and storage containers. if you hire movers though, they generally will not move things that aren't in boxes.
6. take a picture of complicated items - i would have no idea how to hook up my tv and dvd player if it weren't for megan taking photos of it with her phone. shut up, the color coded cords are not as easy as you'd think! they don't all get plugged in and it makes no sense.
7. make pet arrangements - the last thing i need is a panicked hawkeye getting smushed by a dropped couch. usually my best friend meredith drives her around for a few hours, gets her mcdonalds ice cream, and drops her at the new house. but mere moved to california :( so this year, hawkeye will be spending moving day hanging out with john's mom and their dog, thor.
8. clean out a closet first thing - where are you going to stack those boxes you start packing early? the kitchen? clean out a closet first (i chose the closet in which i store my winter coats, fingers crossed i don't need my coats in august in chicago, though it's never a guarantee) and now i can stack all the packed boxes in there and shut the door.
9. assume liquids will spill - just pack everything that could possibly cause damage with the assumption that it will. no matter how well you think you stacked it, even it's a completely unopened bottle of shampoo with the safety seal still on in a box you'll be carrying your super careful self, assume that it will open and spill. cover everything in plastic wrap and put it in a ziplock. and even then, don't put it in a box with something you really care about. better safe than sorry.
10. leave a box or bags for day of things - you're going to have last minute things to pack the minute you move. for me, it's my phone charger, computer, hawkeye's dishes, contact case, toothbrush, things like that. they will exist for you too, so have a plan where you'll put these things, like a tote bag or an extra box.
now, my tips are pretty straightforward because i'm just moving across town. 4.5 miles, actually. and i rent. that means it's not a giant house full of stuff and there's no moving of things like refrigerators. but of course, pinterest has tips for those kinds of moves too:
4. create a moving binder (it's beautiful)
happy packing! and as always, i suggest decluttering whether you're moving or not.