Document Your Move in Pictures

A smartphone or other camera can be of great assistance when you’re moving, says Lifehack. Simply use it to snap pictures of the backs of your televisions, Wi-Fi routers, stereos and other electronic equipment, and you’ll be able to duplicate the setups in a new location quickly and easily. Pictures can also help you file an insurance claim if anything is lost or damaged in transit; simply take pictures of your more valuable items as you pack, and you’ll be able to demonstrate the items’ original condition should anything be scratched, dented, misplaced or stolen.

Moving? Start Packing in the Kitchen

With all of its specialized appliances and accoutrements, the kitchen is arguably the most time-intensive area of the house to pack up during a move. Start on it first, The Frugal Girls advise, and consider switching to disposable plates for the final weeks ahead of the zero hour. Speaking of disposable plates, you can use Styrofoam plates to pad your fragile, reusable dinnerware when packing—simply place a foam plate in-between pottery plates when stacking. And if you want everything to survive the move without damage, don’t skimp on the bubble wrap and shrinkwrap, they add.

How to Pack for a Move

To streamline the packing process before a move, U-Haul advised Denver Post writer Marni Jameson, make a little-used area of your old place into a packing station and stock it with flattened boxes, tape, bubble wrap, markers and other supplies. Use small boxes for heavier items; not only will it save your back and your movers’, it will also be more secure for the contents. Use trash bags for soft items. If you are moving locally, take hanging clothing directly to your new closets. Finally, don’t move empty dressers and suitcases. Fill them with stuff to maximize truck space.

Make a Timetable for Your Move

The sooner you start packing, the easier a move will be, says Georgetown Moving & Storage. Six to eight weeks ahead, start cleaning out the so-called storage areas — closets, attic, garage, and basement — using the keep/donate/trash sorting method. Once anything you want to donate is culled out (four to six weeks ahead), contact ClothingDonations.org for a pickup and procure packing supplies for the stuff you want to keep. Two to four weeks ahead, pack up all of your inessentials, labeling everything so you can integrate it into the new home quickly. A week out, pack up anything you’ll want to have at your fingertips the minute you land in your new home.

Moving? Don’t Forget to Declutter

The average American will move 11.4 times in his or her lifetime, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. And the Organizing Blog thinks that summer 2019 may be more mobile than most — those orange box trucks seem to be everywhere this season, taking people and their stuff across town and across the country.

One thing is certain: Moving is not easy, and it gets harder as you accumulate more stuff. Everything you keep has to go into boxes and onto that truck, and the more you have, the longer it takes and the more it costs. There is a solution, however; and that’s to keep less stuff. #Declutter before you move, and the process will be (somewhat) less of a burden.

A pre-relocation #decluttering differs from an everyday decluttering (although if you’ve followed the Organizing Blog’s advice consistently, you’ll already have limited your possessions to only the essentials). For one thing, says The Art of Happy Moving, you’ll want to declutter by category rather than room so that you pack like items together.

Begin with the heavy stuff — books, records, etc. Even if you’re an avid collector, the less of these weighty items you keep, the better your friends/movers will manage. Have extra boxes and bags available as you pack; seal up the things you want to “Keep,” sort out what you want to “Donate,” and “Trash” anything that too broken, outdated or dilapidated to use immediately.

Set the donation bags and boxes aside and contact ClothingDonations.org for a pickup. Once some of the trashed and donated items are out of the way, you’ll have more room to carefully pack up the things you want — and likely be ready to #declutter more of the things you don’t want more aggressively.

Pack three or four boxes of keepers per day, Nourishing Minimalism suggests, and start well ahead of the move so that you have plenty of time to get the place cleaned when the zero hour finally arrives. It’s toward the end of the packing phase when things can get frantic; random objects will wind up in boxes together — some essential, most not.

While it’s an incredible chore that brings lots of stress, moving is the perfect opportunity to edit nonessential stuff out of your life for good. When you unpack only the things you need and cherish in your new home, you’ll be glad you decluttered before the move.