Moving out can be a stressful experience, but it doesn’t have to be! This essential guide will provide you with all the tips and tricks you need to make your move as smooth and stress-free as possible.
Whether it’s across town or across the country, moving out of your home doesn’t have to mean weeks of stress.
Moving requires all the same steps, whether close or far, or whether your home is large or small.
The biggest challenge is keeping organized in an increasingly hectic and cluttered home as moving day approaches.
To help you avoid a major meltdown, in this article, we will offer our professional tips for staying organized (and calm) before moving out.
Table of Contents
The Essential Guide to Organizing Before Moving Out
Set a Moving Budget
This might seem like it has nothing to do with staying organized, but it really does. By setting a budget, you can decide how much money you can invest in the things that help keep you organized.
A big budget means that you can spend money on things like renting stackable moving bins, whereas a small budget means you need to start scrounging around for cardboard boxes across town.
You also have to ask yourself: Do you have the money to hire an organizer, or do you have to do everything yourself?
Can you afford to hire a moving company to help you pack, or are you doing it all on your own?
Have a Plan
Moving involves many steps that can lead to a stressful few months or weeks if you don’t have a plan.
When you know your budget, you can plan more effectively, such as knowing if you can make a call and have everything managed for you or booking a van vs. a team of movers.
Your plan should include a list of everything you need to do, whether you DIY it, have some help, or have an entire team conduct the move.
What has to be done to get you from point A to point B?
Choose Your Method: DIY or Movers
Deciding if you want to DIY it or hire movers is based on several factors:
- How many things you have
- How far you’re moving
- How much expensive stuff you have (such as antiques or a piano)
If you have a small budget, hardly any stuff or things of value and aren’t moving far, then DIY is the best choice.
On the other hand, if you have a bigger budget, tons of stuff (much of which is expensive), and are either moving close or far, then hiring movers is probably a must.
Another consideration is your level of ability. If you’re young and spry, then you can likely manage everything physically.
However, if you have mobility issues or lifting limitations, you’ll need professional or otherwise help.
Create a Schedule
Use your plan to create a schedule for each step of the move.
Consider how long each step will take so you can aim for start and finish dates that have you completely prepared by moving day.
Start week by week and when it makes sense, assign a day for certain tasks such as picking up boxes or dropping things off at a local charity.
If you want, you can even assign a deadline for when you want to have each room packed.
Other considerations might include:
- Arranging to make minor repairs
- Repainting walls
- Having a garage sale or listing stuff for sale
All of these steps will help you stay organized.
Sort Your Stuff as You Go
To avoid packing things you don’t need or that won’t fit in your new home, have a system to sort them as you go.
As you tackle each room, pack the things you need, toss those that are worthless or broken, and create a box or pile for items you can donate, sell, or just give away.
If you do it as you pack, then you’ll save time and also remove stuff from your home to reduce clutter. All you’ll be left with are the boxes of stuff that you’re taking with you—so nice and so simple.
Get Rid of the Unwanted Items
The garbage is easy, as it can just be thrown out as you work.
However, if you have larger items to be tossed (like broken appliances or a torn, grungy couch), you’ll need to make a call to find out your local rules for the pickup of large items by the city.
For your belongings that you no longer want but aren’t garbage, consider hosting a garage sale or donating them to a charity.
For anything that friends or family claim, provide them with a deadline. If they don’t pick it up on time, then off to the charity it goes.
There are plenty of apps to help you sell things online, or, if you have the space, you can have a garage sale. Anything not sold goes to charity.
Get Packing Supplies
As already mentioned, the budget determines what packing supplies you can afford.
If possible, renting moving bins is the best option, even if you just do it for your breakables. The bins are stackable, which keeps your home feeling neater and safer.
If you depend on cardboard, be sure to collect boxes wherever you can. You’ll also need towels to wrap breakables, packing tape, and labels.
Create a Maintenance Box
Have a maintenance box ready to use at the new place. This should include things like scissors, a hammer and nails, cleaning supplies, paper towels, and garbage bags.
Depending on how the previous owners left your new home, you may find yourself greeted by dust and germs that you’ll want to be able to get rid of quickly and efficiently.
Keep your maintenance box easily accessible so you’re ready to undertake whatever cleaning or minor repairs when you arrive at your new house.
Small condos and apartments can be very messy when moving. Try to clear a path so that boxes are out of the way.
Make it easy for yourself to get into kitchen cupboards, use your counter space, and get from one area to another. As well, be sure not to block your TV!
Make certain to clearly label each box so you can find everything easily at your new home.
Mark the room and a brief description of the contents like “Kitchen – dishes” or “Dining Room – Buffet”.
If you have more than one bedroom, mark the box as “Bedroom 1, 2, or 3”, and then at the new place, put a sign on the door so people helping with the move know what room to put it in.
Hire Apartment Cleaners for Move-Out Day
Last but not least, hire apartment cleaners to move out the mess so new tenants or homeowners can move in.
Hiring professional cleaners to perform a complete move-out clean of your home ensures that you keep the landlord and new owners/tenants happy.