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Planning the Move

Moving Day Plans

Once you’ve found your new home and signed the lease, chances are most of your free time will be consumed with planning your move. Before you begin packing, make a moving day checklist to guarantee that everything runs smoothly and according to plan.

Pack a Bag

Put together a suitcase or overnight bag with the clothes and toiletries you will need for the first few days after the move. Unpacking is a big job. Having access to essential items will make it easier to unpack in an orderly fashion.

Stock Up on Supplies

You’ll need a variety of items to facilitate your move, including:

Blankets, comforters and sleeping bags to wrap mirrors and framed artwork.
  • Rented pads to protect furniture tops and edges.
  • Tape to reinforce boxes, seal drawers and corral loose screws or hardware.
  • Twine to tie entertainment center, wardrobe or refrigerator doors shut.
  • Bungee cords or tie-downs to secure furniture.
  • An extra box or three for odds and ends.
  • A basic household tool kit to disassemble furniture and remove and rehang doors.

Leaving your old home as neat as possible will preserve your security deposit and make a good impression. Have a mop and bucket, sponges, paper towels and cleaning solutions on hand to do a quick clean-up after the movers depart.

Last Minute Tasks

Go through the house one last time, checking closets, drawers and cabinets for any overlooked belongings. Don’t forget the garage, carport or patio. Crate your pets so they won’t go crazy when strangers appear, accidentally escape, or get tangled underfoot. Brew a pot of coffee on a cold morning or put some bottled water in an ice chest on a hot one.

Take a Meeting

When the movers arrive, spend a minute to consulting with them about their preferred plan of attack. If you’re using professional movers, they will probably survey the job and take charge. If you’re doing a community move, assign someone to be the leader. Larger items should usually be loaded first and boxes last. If one person directs the others, it’s more likely that your furniture and belongings will be loaded in a fast, safe and logical way.

Be Nice to Your Neighbors

Both your old neighbors and your new ones deserve respect. Keep the noise level as low as possible and park trucks so that they don’t block driveways or restrict street access. Ask the movers to be careful about trampling flowerbeds and lawns. Being a considerate mover will help you keep old friends and make new ones.

Serve Lunch

Moving is hard work. Keep breaks to a minimum and reduce unexplained absences by providing a healthy meal. It doesn’t have to be fancy – a variety of sandwiches, chips, a box of cookies and water, soda or coffee should do the trick. Buy the food ready-made to save time or prepare it yourself to save money. Don’t worry about having too much food. After the move, you’ll likely be too tired to cook and the leftovers will come in handy.

During and After

Whether you’re using a professional service or relying on the kindness of friends and family, it’s important for you to be around to answer any questions the movers might have. If your move is a local one, enlist a trusted friend or family member to wait at the new place and direct the action there. If you’re moving long distance, plot the driving route beforehand to avoid delays or book a flight that will get you to your destination well before the moving van arrives.