How to Prepare for Moving
Moving can be an extremely stressful endeavor. The better job you do planning and preparing before the day, the less stressful you will be on the day. Also, the more planning and preparing that you do before your move, the less damage there will be to your belongings.
Throw out or donate any belongings you no longer use. You will be surprised at how much junk can accumulates in only a few years. Getting rid of the stuff you no longer use will greatly simplify your packing.
Curtail your grocery shopping in the weeks prior to your move. Consume all, if not most, of the items you have stocked up on. There is little logic in paying to move a massive stock of food; especially items that are perishable.
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Find empty boxes at your local grocery stores. Try to avoid having to buy new boxes whenever possible.
Ask the moving company if they supply wardrobe boxes. These are tall boxes with a metal rail at the top for easy transfer to your closet. You will not need to remove the clothes from their hangers.
Pack non-essential items first. If the actual move is still a couple of weeks away, begin by packing the items that you do not normally use on a day-to-day basis. Start with old books and DVDs. This will ensure the remaining time left before the move is not spent packing and re-packing items. There is nothing more annoying than packing something away, and having to go back into your boxes a couple of days later to fish it out again.
Think strategically. Plan to pack soft items with other soft or delicate items. Plan to distribute weight as evenly as possible between boxes. For example, do not pack all your books in one big box. (No one will be able to lift it!)
Label as you go. Carefully label each box as you pack it full of the contents that belong inside. This will make unpacking a lot easier when you arrive at your destination.
Make a list of items that will travel with you instead of the movers. Consider items that have special value, such as jewelry, electronics, rare collectibles and personal items. Many movers will refuse to transport items such as firearms, ammunition, liquids under pressure, and aerosol cans.
Investigate your moving company with your state’s Better Business Bureau. Also, search forums and other sites for previous customer comments. If possible, hire a mover someone you know has already used.
Double check that the site of your destination will be ready for you on the day you are scheduled to move in. This is especially true if you are moving into an apartment. Some complexes in large cities have rules and specified hours during which you may move in. In high rise buildings, it may also be necessary to reserve a freight elevator several days in advance. These are not regulations you want to discover at the last minute.
Make sure that you know whether the movers expect to be tipped. Ask around in your area to find out what the going rate is.
Have snacks available for the movers if you expect the process to take a long time to load your belongings. This is even so, if the movers will be doing the packing. If you treat your movers well, they will be more inclined to treat your belongings with care.