In Just 5 Easy Steps
Whether you are moving just down the road, across country, or across the world, taking the time to sit down and plan things a few weeks before your move can save you a lot of headache when the movers knock on your door. Here we give you 5 steps to help make your life easier.
1. Print or Draw Your Floor Plan
This is your cheat code to a low-stress move. If it is available, print a floor plan of your new place. If it is not available, a rough drawing will work as well. Be sure to include room dimensions as much as possible, because it will help you plan throughout the later steps. Furthermore, when the movers arrive, you can hold a meeting with them to discuss the layout of the new house, which will help them decide what should be packed onto the truck first. Remember: first in, last out. It will only slow down your movers if they find themselves stepping over and around things at the new place, so understanding the layout before loading the truck will make everyone’s life easier.
2. Plan the Layout of Your New Place
Go ahead and dream of your new home. Where do you want things to go? Look around your current home and make a list of items and mentally place them in the different rooms of your floor plan. Will your bed go in bedroom 1, or 2? Should it go next to the window or against the east wall? Will it leave enough room for your nightstand, or should you have it on the west wall instead? Or, you may find that the living room couch will not fit down the hallway from the front door, so the movers will need to bring it in through the double-wide window in the living room. Finding these potential problems now saves you confusion, angst, and accidental holes in the wall of your beautiful new home.
3. Decide What to Take and What to Get Rid of
Some of the problems you found may be best solved by leaving things behind. That couch that doesn’t fit through the hallway is pretty ratty. Do you really want to spend all the time and energy of moving it into your new house? Then don’t take it with you. Offer it up to friends who help you pack, put it on craigslist, or schedule a trash pickup, but go ahead and cut down on your costs and future headaches by leaving it out of your new house. Use your floor plan and layout to pick out the perfect new couch to be delivered to your house. Bonus: you won’t have to fight the ratty couch back down that hallway to the trash truck.
Call friends over, offer them drinks and food, and put things in boxes. The more you pack now, the less the movers will be trying to pack instead of carrying your things into the truck. Furthermore, pre-packing gives you the opportunity to discover the things that movers will need to pack. Maybe you are running out of time, or maybe some items are too fragile, large, or cumbersome to pack yourself. Regardless, if you need the movers to pack, you will want both of you to know that ahead of time.
While packing, you will want to group together things that will go together in the new house, to make the move easier. This will help the movers on moving day to plan the proper order for loading everything into the truck after you show them the floor plan. Again, first in the truck means the last out, so make sure you make it easy for your movers to organize the move.
5. Label, Label, Label!
Label your boxes, your furniture, your floor plan, the house itself… the more organized you are ahead of time, the more pain-free you will make your move. Try to make your labels consistent. Don’t name the boxes “Bedroom 1”, the door labels for moving day “Main Bedroom”, and make it “Master Bedroom” on your floor plan. You want to make sure that you minimize confusion for the movers and yourself, and make sure everything goes in the right room. This will not only make the move go faster, it will save you time in unpacking as well.
So that’s it! Using a floorplan when planning your move will save you time and a lot of headache. That said, do not be afraid to bend the plan a bit. Once you get into your new house and you see them carrying that bookshelf past a wall that would actually be perfect for the bookcase, say something! The whole idea is not to constrain yourself will rules, but to make your transition into your new home as enjoyable as possible.
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