Whether it’s your first home or your dream home, buying and moving can be stressful. We put on our thinking caps and came up with some practical tips and tricks to help make your move go smoothly.
Consider the Necessities
Think about what you will need when you first arrive. Designate an easy to recognize container such as a clear tote or brightly colored box to make into your “Need First” box. Pack inside trash bags, paper towels, toilet paper, tools, phone chargers, simple snacks, a set of sheets for every bed and other things that are important to you. If coffee is a must have in your house, pack the coffee maker and supplies in this container. The point is to keep together all those necessities that you won’t want to go searching for among a sea of boxes.
While you’re at it, have every member of your family pack an overnight bag with a change of clothes, toiletries, medicine and other items they might take with them on a trip.
Collect packing supplies and begin packing gradually. It will seem like less work and will give you more time to pack carefully. Be sure to start with things you don’t use frequently like grandma’s china, out of season clothes and family mementos.
Purge as you go. If you don’t use it or don’t like it, don’t pack it. These items can be sold in a yard sale, donated to charity or offered to friends.
Change your address before you move. Be sure to notify, not just the Post Office, but your credit card company, cell phone provider and your bank. We love when our customers tell us they’re moving so we can keep contact information up to date.
For a few weeks leading up to your move, make an effort to eat out of your pantry and freezer instead of grocery shopping. Remember, the more you use, the less you have to move or lose!
Try to clean your new home before moving day. Whether you clean it yourself or pay for a service, it’s better to move into a clean house than to clean as you go.
Pack like items from the same room. Don’t mix your toiletries with cookwear. Keep like items together and then label the boxes with the box content and the room where it belongs. Better yet, color code your boxes with magic markers or a strip of colored tape.
Take great care with breakable items and other valuables. Wrap breakable items well and be sure to label these boxes fragile. Another precaution might be to pack these important items in a different kind of box than everything else.
Tape those boxes well by securing both the top and bottom seams. Also be sure to use the right kind of box for the job. Heavy items like books and dishes should go in small boxes. Light items like bedding can be packed in large boxes.
Also be sure to fill those boxes to prevent shifting in the box and to cut down on the number of needed boxes. Gaps can be filled with towels or out of season clothing.
If you must disassemble furniture, store all the small parts in a Ziplock bag. Label the bag and then securely tape it to the back of that piece of furniture. Keeping parts and pieces together and safe will save much heartache later, say when screws are missing from your child’s bed.
Moving clothes can be a challenge. One option for moving clothes on hangers is to take a tip from the dry cleaner. Cut a hole in the bottom of a large trash bag and slide the bag over the items on hangers. Items will clean and together and can easily be carried straight from the truck to the closet. Have items in dresser drawers? Leave them in the drawers and cover with Saran Wrap or Press and Seal to keep everything in place.
Look out for Fido
Moving can be a traumatic experience for children and pets. While the doors are open and people are moving about, be sure to keep pets secured in a crate or a room where there is not activity. Not only might they be underfoot, a frightened pet could run outside and be lost.
Then be sure to keep their travel experience as calm and pleasant as possible, especially if you know your pet is a poor traveler. When you arrive at the new home, create a pet space that they will recognize by providing them with familiar bedding, bowls, food and favorite toys.
Are you thinking about buying a home? Contact your local VCNB office to speak with a lender in your neighborhood. Do you have a great moving tip? Share it in the comments below!