How can I prepare for my move in advance so that it is as stress-free as possible?
Moving can be very stressful although it doesn’t have to be. The trick is to plan ahead and stay organized before the movers come.
Write everything down.
Before you pack even one box, create a simple record keeping system for each room that you are packing up. Create an Excel spreadsheet or a table that lists all of the items in each room. Assign each room a color and mark each box that you pack with a color-coordinated sticker.
Have plenty of supplies.
Don’t underestimate the number of boxes that you will need. This is one time when more is actually better. Well before you move, start gathering boxes from local stores before they toss them in the recycling bin. Paper boxes from office supply stores are great to use since they are typically very sturdy. If you purchase boxes from a moving company, remember you can always return unused boxes for a refund. Set aside at least 10 boxes to use for last minute items on moving day such as bedding, clothing and cleaning supplies. Make sure that you have several rolls of packing tape as well to tightly seal each box and use either colored stickers or a sharpie pen to mark each box.
If you’re doing your own packing, be careful about overloading cartons and be sure to use appropriate cartons so your goods will arrive safely. Carton tops should be flat and taped securely for easy handling and safe stacking in the truck. To avoid damage, do not pack fragile items and heavy items in the same carton and clearly mark fragile cartons. Most importantly, do not pack valuables such as jewelry, money, medication or important papers as the mover is not responsible for these items. Make sure these stay with you at all times.
Notify the post office, magazines, credit card companies and friends and family of your change of address.
You can make the Change of Address process faster and easier by notifying everyone who sends you mail of your new address and the date of your move two weeks before you move. Many bills and statements provide an area for making an address change notification. The U. S. Postal Service also offers a great kit to make this process easier.
Discontinue home delivery of newspaper at least a week in advance.
Call your gas, water, electricity, telephone and cable companies to disconnect services on the day following your move. Also, don’t forget to call the utilities in your new town or home to arrange for service to start the day before your move so that you have service when you arrive at your new home.
Write directions to your new home for the mover.
Provide a cell phone number (or two just in case) of where you can be reached in transit. Also, make sure to leave your forwarding address and phone number for your home’s new occupants as sometimes mail and packages still get delivered to your old address even after a move.