After months of dreaming, planning, designing, arranging, organizing, and coordinating, the big day is almost here.
Moving to your new home may seem like the easy part after all of the decisions you’ve made over the past few months. But no matter how much you are prepared for moving, when the big day arrives, there are always areas that could have been more ready; things you could have done differently to make the transition even smoother.
As a new home developer, we deal with moving all the time. We’ve learned a trick or two that can save you time, energy and money.
Start With A List
From the moment you sign on the dotted line and start planning your move to a new home, write everything down. We often advise new homeowners to invest in a three-ring binder to keep everything in one place. Because the next few months are going to be some of busiest times of your life, it’s important to keep all of the information you need at your fingertips.
This gives you a place to store important phone numbers, and receipts, and jot down every action item that needs to be completed and every problem you encounter that needs to have a solution. It gives you a record of things you need to do and things you’ve completed. It ensures that paperwork doesn’t get lost in the process, especially while you are packing up your home.
It also helps create a log should something go wrong. You’ll have an easy way to look back at everything you’ve completed and have access to paperwork to prove what steps were taken along the way. The more organized you are, the easier the process will be.
Load Up On Supplies
No matter how easy you think the moving process will be, there are always closets a little fuller than you anticipated, or a little extra junk in the spare bedroom than you remembered. Even if you are using a professional moving company for your move, there are still things you’ll want to handle on your own.
From the moment your move is official, invest in packing supplies:
- Crates or tubs
- Bubble wrap
- Box tape
- Permanent markers
- Trash bags
By having everything on hand, it gives you the possibility of packing up a box in the few extra minutes during your busy days. No matter what boxes, crates or tubs you choose to fill, be sure to have a clear and definable marking system to ensure placement of the boxes goes smoothly at the other end.
Create A System
One of the smoothest systems we’ve seen this accomplished is by using a color system for every room in your home. Designate a color for each room; blue for the master bedroom, red for the kitchen, green for the family room. Then, apply colored stickers to every box so it’s clearly visible as it’s picked up and moved from truck to house.
In your new home, place matching colored stickers to the door of each room. This ensures every mover or helper understands the system and can quickly determine where the boxes belong. It’s also helpful to create a sign to attach to the wall designating where you want the boxes stacked. This prevents stacks from having to be moved once large pieces of furniture arrive.
Also be sure to keep things together. Keep bookends with books. Keep lights together with light bulbs and extension cords. Keep pictures with picture hooks and shelf brackets with bookcases. Nothing can be more frustrating than having to abandon several projects because you can’t find all the pieces. By keeping everything together, you ensure all of your actions can be completed from beginning to end in a timely manner.
Pack Slowly Over Time
There are always things you can pack from the day you decide to move. Books on your bookshelf may add to the ambiance, but how many times do you read them? How about your summer clothes in the winter, or winter clothes in the summer? Nope, don’t need those either.
Take a look way back in your kitchen cabinets. Sure, you may love the beautiful bowls you received as wedding presents. But when was the last time you used them? Chances are you won’t be throwing a party in your old home before the big move.
Even if your move is still several months away, there are many things you can pack up and store. And if you’re in the process of trying to sell your current home as well, it can give you a chance to “tidy up” and make it more sellable.
Many home staging sites online will give you tips and advice for selling a home. The first tip is almost always “remove the personal items and remove the clutter.” While we love our stuff, it inhibits other people from seeing the house as a place they can call home. Boxing it up helps potential new homeowners see your home in a new light while giving you the chance to get one step closer to moving day.
Create Personal Boxes
Don’t forget to reserve a few boxes for the big day. Keep personal papers with you; you never know when you’ll need them. Create a special box for cleaning supplies; you’ll need them to clean up your old home and as you begin living in your new home.
Also, consider having a few boxes set aside for personal items you’ll most likely want right away. Do you want to live without the coffee pot for a few days while you look for it in a dozen different boxes? You can also give each child a personal box to ensure they have their favorite stuffed friends, toys, and comforts, to help make the transition even easier.
Reserve Services Early
Once you have your moving date firmly in place, it’s time to start contacting services to ensure you’ll have a smooth transition from place to place.
Research ahead of time the best moving company for you. Will you hire a truck, movers, and materials and have the job done for you? Or are you more of a do it yourself kind of family? There are advantages and disadvantages to both; a quick search online will help you figure out the right approach. It will also give you a chance to select a company to do business with and start the process even before you firm up a date.
If you are moving during a busy time of the year – spring and summer are notoriously busy moving months – you’ll want to make sure you have everything you need as soon as possible to avoid having a company book up and not be able to provide you with the service you desire.
Also be aware of other services that can impact your move. Would you like cable hooked up as you are moving in? How about Internet access? That can be especially important if you run a business from home. Did you purchase new furniture for your family room or bedroom? Coordinate to have it delivered during a time when you’ll be in your new home.
Are you ready for your big move to your new home?