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Moving Tips & Packing Ideas

To make moving less stressful, create a plan and gather supplies early.
Moving is a task that involves more than just boxes, tape and packing. It is an event that can spiral out of control if you are not organized or don't know where to start in the packing process. You don't want your items lost or broken, but you do want the process to flow smoothly and quickly. When packing and moving, it is important to have a plan and start packing early as well as know what to pack and how to pack it.
Sketch a Plan
Before sorting through and packing items, make a written plan with the following information: which rooms need packing; what large items you are moving; what items you know of can be given away or given to a charity; your moving date; supplies to purchase; truck or moving service to use; and the duties of friends/family members.
Book and Recruit
Book your rental truck or moving service at least two weeks to a month before your moving date. Recruit family members and friends at least two weeks before the move date so you know you will have help. Don't forget to recruit more individuals than you need in case someone has an unexpected issue or change in plans arise.
Cancel and Initiate Services
Contact the utility company in your new home or apartment's area and put in a turn on request for at least two days before you are scheduled to move. You don't want to wait on the service to be turned on the day you are moving into your new place. Schedule for the utilities at your old place to be disconnected the day after moving out so you won't be in the dark on moving day. Don't forget to contact the post office, cable company, Internet service, credit companies, your bank and other services at least two weeks before moving of your change in address.
Purchase or locate items you need for packing before starting the process. Gather boxes, scissors, string, garment bags, bubble wrap/newspapers, packing tape, colored markers and trash bags. Label one large box "Moving Supplies" or similar wording. Place the items in this box so you know where the items are when you need them.
Staging Area
Use one room or area of your home/apartment as a staging area for placing items to pack, as well as your "Moving Supplies" box containing the items you need for packing.
Sort and Toss
Sort through your items first. Decide what to donate and toss out before placing the items in the staging area for packing. When sorting through clothes, select the out-of-season clothing first and sort or toss, then pack the "keeper" items in garment bags to keep them from wrinkling.
Label Boxes and Bags
Come up with a color-code system if you don't feel like writing the names of the rooms on the boxes and bags. Example, yellow for the kitchen; blue for the bathroom; red for the office; and so on.
One Box At A Time
When packing, pack one box at a time to keep from having partially full boxes and putting the wrong items in the wrong boxes. Label the outside of the box immediately after putting in the first item--don't say "I will label it later." If family members or friends are helping you, periodically check that they are following the rules and not just tossing items into any box.
"Carry-On" Bag or Box
Pack a carry-on bag or box with toiletries, clothing, plates, utensils, a flashlight, batteries, cleaning supplies and canned goods or snacks for the first night in your new home or apartment so you don't have to sort through boxes for critical items.
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