Trying to remember everything on moving day is a disaster waiting to happen. There will be so much going on that by the time you close the front door for the last time, you will likely be too emotional and exhausted to even realize that you’ve left something in the garden or forgotten a crucial detail.
And so, when it comes down to it, moving house is really more about the planning process than anything else. When it comes to the day you move, you should be able to simply put your plan into action without having to think much beyond which box goes on top of which.
The best way to plan is to answer 3 questions: who, what and how? Who will be moving? What will be moving? How will everything be moving? By looking at these 3 questions, you can create a winning strategy to make moving day significantly less stressful and even, dare we say it, fun.
If your whole household is moving, the who will encompass everyone and might need to be refined a little more. However, if you have an older kid moving out to go start their own independent life, the “who” is a lot simpler! But whoever you are including, this section is all about catering for their needs while you pack as well as on the day.
Young kids are simultaneously great and potentially disastrous when it comes to moving house. On the one hand, if you can make a game of the packing process and keep everyone in good spirits, they will be excited and potentially helpful. On the other hand, one crying kid is enough to stress everyone out! For this reason, it’s a really good idea to talk about the new house a lot in the run-up to moving so that they know what’s going on. Equally, while they can certainly help go through their own stuff, you might like to arrange childcare for the day itself.
If you are moving with pets, there are a few other considerations to make too. Like kids, most pets will definitely benefit from staying with a friend on the day itself as the chaos of moving house will be quite stressful for them. If you are moving over a long distance, keep your pet out of the way until the very last moment and then bring them in the car with you if you can.
Knowing what is moving and what is staying is essential – obviously! But the sooner you decide, the easier it will be to pack things up properly, sell what’s worth selling and bin everything else. This means that you need to know what sort of home decor ideas you are aiming for in your new property and which things you have now will suit that theme.
The best tips for packing all focus on two things: starting as early as possible with the non-essentials and proper box labeling. The best way to label boxes is to write down which room it is going to and what’s inside. This also works with furniture. You might also like to add a priority rating using traffic light colors. Another good idea is to make sure that your boxes are reasonably easy to carry, so put lighter things in with heavy items and try to match bulky stuff with smaller things.
If you aren’t moving very far, it might be a good idea to move some non-essentials into storage before you move so that you can move into your new place more gradually. However, do bear in mind that storage costs and it might not be an option if you are moving further away.
It’s surprising how many people it takes to move a single-family home but the more help you have, the easier it will be. Booking your removalists early is an absolute must – especially if you are moving interstate. You should also think about the logistics of moving your stuff – what comes in the car, what goes in the van and what could be sent in shipping containers.
Let’s start with the big things. If you are moving a longer distance, it might be easier to send some things ahead in shipping containers or pallets. However, timing is key. You need to make sure that you have plenty of time to send your things but also ensure that you will be there to collect when they arrive. You shouldn’t transport any delicate or fragile things in pallets if you can help it.
Next, loading the van. Your removalists will be a big help here and should be able to help you organize your stuff in a logical way. However, if you are doing this yourself, the key thing is to load fragile things on top of heavy, bulky items and make sure nothing can move around too much. While doing a 3D version of Tetris might work, you’ll probably save time if you plan how you are going to load the van in advance. You may also need to check the weight distribution according to the van.
Finally, your car. If you are moving a long way, you will have a significant road trip ahead, in which case, your kids will definitely want something to do! Regardless of journey length, it’s a good idea for you to pack your small valuables in the car with you for peace of mind. This might include jewelry, watches and small electronics for you but your kids will probably want to bring a favorite toy or two to make sure they get there okay.
Moving house is always going to be stressful but if you take some time to think things through, you can make your day run a lot more smoothly. The more time you have to prepare, the easier it will be to reorganize things once you arrive at your new property. Planning for the who, what and how should make your move more manageable – now all you have to do is get started!