Dos and Don’ts to Make Your Cross-Country Move a Breeze by Cindy Aldridge
Moving a house full of furniture and a lifetime of memories is more than just packing a few boxes and renting a UHaul. It takes precision and practicality to ensure your plans don’t plummet. Here are a few dos and don’ts to keep in mind before moving mishaps hurt more than your pride.
Do clear clutter early and often
Even if you haven’t lived in your current home for that long, chances are that you’ve accumulated at least a few things that you don’t need. A good rule of thumb is that if it hasn’t been used in the last 12 months, it’s probably not worth keeping around. It’s never too early to clear clutter, and you should start the moment you know you’re going to move. Services such as LetGo and Poshmark not only help you clean up but put cash in your pocket. Whether you’re looking to sell your too-small sofa or thin that overly-enthusiastic athletic gear collection, you’ll have no problem finding a buyer. Keep in mind, however, that there are certain prohibited items that may be best left at the curb.
Don’t wait until the last minute to pack
One of the worst things you can do is wake up on moving day and realize your coffee table trinkets haven’t been properly treated for transport. Moving Planner is an easy-to-use app that can help you keep track of and share your packing checklists. Developer Jimbl offers a number of additional free and cheap apps to help you plan everything from house cleaning to home buying.
Do involve the kids
Children are creatures of habit and tend to thrive in familiar environments. Expect some pushback, temper tantrums, and tears. The sooner you tell your children that a move is on the horizon, the more time they will have to come to terms with the situation. But don’t just talk to your children; involve them in the planning and give them responsibilities relating to the relocation. For example, if you’re moving to Rochester, NY, let them scope out homes online with you to build excitement, and even consider letting them add a few to the list that you plan on visiting in person.
Don’t involve the dog
Like the kids, your dog will feel apprehensive as things begin to change. And since he doesn’t have an opposable thumb to properly hold the tape gun, it’s best that Fido sit this one out. On days when packing is at its peak, find someone who can take the dog for a walk to help him exert some of his nervous energy. If you’re moving in a rush, you may want to consider overnight accommodations for your canine companion or at least send him on a day trip while the moving truck is being loaded.
Do label each box
Since X-ray vision is a trait possessed only by cape-wearing Kryptonians, you’ll want to label your boxes so they can be placed in the appropriate room upon arrival. Olympia Moving and Storage offers these free printable moving box labels. Use one color label for each room and take extra care to mark boxes with fragile items.
Do plan an extra day for stops along the way
Driving takes time, and being confined in a small space gets old quickly. This is especially true if you’re traveling with young children, who are naturally curious about the sights and sounds along the highway. MapQuest is a wonderful online platform that will help you plan your route to take advantage of attractions and entertainment on the long road from here to there.
Remember, procrastinating packrats who fail to plan are those that plan to fail. Take a little time to get things in order before the big day or you may find yourself an unwilling meme on the list of hilarious moving day disasters. And you don’t want that.