Organizing Your Move

by Chelsea McDonnoughMay 30, 2013

Ah, moving. I moved 7 times in 7 years. I moved back and forth from college for summer breaks – I had to completely move out of my dorm and then sorority house every summer and move back in at the end of the summer. I moved from one part of the state to another. And I moved from an apartment to our current home. Oof. I was so happy the first summer when we didn’t have to move. It was pure bliss.
organizing your move
Today I’m sharing tips to stay organized and sane, well as sane as possible, when making a move.

My number one tip is to purge before you pack. Get rid of things you don’t need or want in your new home. Have a moving sale, sell larger items on Craigslist, or donate your unwanted items. Why pack, move, and unpack things you don’t use anymore?

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Help maintain your sanity by creating a moving binder. This won’t take long to make, and it will actually save you time in the long run. Things to put in your moving binder: pen/marker, labels, change of address forms, moving company information, to-do list, extra paper to write notes. Basically anything pertaining to your move should go into your moving binder.

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Color code your moving boxes. Assign a color to each room in your new home (living room = red, master bedroom = blue, etc.). Put a colored label on each box that will go in its appropriate room. You can do this with markers, colored tape, printed labels from your computer printer, large stickers, or colored paper secured with tape. Remember to put a label on more than one side of your box.

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It’s also a good idea to dedicate a section in your moving binder to the contents of each box. Simply label your color coded boxes with numbers. Then, in your moving binder, you can write the specific contents of the numbered box. That way when you get into your house you won’t have to dig through boxes to find something you may need. You can also use this system to keep track of how a certain box is being transported, whether the movers took it or you put it in your vehicle. This system will also help keep track of any boxed you put into storage.

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Create boxes to unpack first. I’d recommend having a kitchen “unpack first” box, which would include your daily use kitchen items you’d need to cook and eat a meal (pot, pan, cooking utensils, paper plates, plastic cutlery, paper towels, etc.). A bathroom box is also a must– include toilet tissue, shower curtain, towels, toiletries. Putting together a bedroom box is also a good idea– include linens and pillows for each bed that will be used the first night in your new place.

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Clothes are such a pain to move. During my last move I walked into my closet in my apartment hugged a section of clothes hanging on hangers, walked out to my car, and laid them on the seat of my car. A more organized approach to this is to use plastic garbage bags. Just stuff your clothes inside the trash bag. So simple! This method helps keep the clothes together and from shifting around during transport. This is a genius idea because you spend minimal time unpacking your clothes– just hang them in your new closet and remove the bag. Plus, have you tried to pack a bunch of hangers for a move? Things quickly get out of control unless you tape or rubber band them together in sets of 10-20. And even then they can get into a jumbled mess.

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Hopefully these tips will help you stay organized and more stress-free when making your move. Just remember that putting in some time to plan in the beginning will help immensely once your move is in full gear.

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Chelsea McDonnough
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