Congrats on your new home! Now you just have to figure out how you’re going to pack and move everything without breaking the bank, your fragile lamp, or your back. Good thing we put together this list of 41 easy moving and packing tips that will make your move dead simple.
How do we know these tips will make your move dead simple?
We asked expert movers, packers, and professional organizers to share their best tips. If you’re in need of storage, get in touch with MakeSpace who will handle all the heavy lifting for you.
So sit back, grab a snack, and dive in!
1. Get rid of everything.
Okay, maybe not everything, but the more unused and unnecessary items you eliminate from your home, the less stuff you’ll have to pack up, haul across town, unload, and organize.
Certified professional organizerEllen Delap recommends clearing any clutter from your home as soon as you know you’ll be moving.
Be ruthless with your stuff. That coat you think is cute but haven’t worn in four months? Donate it.
The very first coffee maker you ever bought that flavors your morning brew with little pieces of rust? Trash it.
Doing a massive preliminary purge will have the single biggest impact on the efficiency and ease of your entire packing process.
2. Sort things by category.
Take a cue from Marie Kondo and organize your belongings by category, not by room (note that the category part only applies to the organization process, not the unpacking — that’s a whole separate ordeal).
Instead of spending a day cleaning out your entire bedroom, spend an afternoon sorting through every article of clothing you own.
Scour every coat closet, dirty clothes hamper, and laundry room until you’ve got all your clothes in one place. Then sort.
Do the same thing for books, shoes, important papers, and the like.
Free Bonus: Download our step-by-step KonMari Cheat Sheet so you can easily organize everything in your home just like Marie Kondo.
If you’d like to donate your items, check out our guide on where to donate your old clothes, books, furniture, toys, and more.
4. Set aside stuff to sell.
You probably have a few items you no longer want, but would love to get a little money for. If that’s the case, set these items aside and determine where you can sell them.
If it’s furniture, Craigslist or AptDeco might be your best bet. If it’s brand name clothing, you could tryPoshmark or a local consignment store.
For specialty items like a gently used Coach purse or your collection of 90’s Beanie Babies, get on eBay.
Once you have everything sorted, set a date on your calendar to visit the nearest Buffalo Exchange or craft descriptions of the items you plan to sell online.
For everything you don’t want to take with you but can’t say goodbye to yet, schedule a MakeSpace pickup.
We’ll pick up all your stuff (yep, even your heavy furniture, bike, AC unit, and luggage), store it in our secure and temperature-controlled storage facility, and create an online photo catalog so you can see everything without having to visit a self-storage unit.
The best part: Whenever you need an item back, all you have to do is select its photo and we’ll deliver it to you.
6. Research professional moving companies.
Research is never fun. Yelp and Google will overwhelm you with the sheer volume of choices for household moving companies to hire, but don’t give in to the pressure and pick the first four-star rating you see.
A moving company can often make or break your entire moving experience, so it’s important to get it right. The more effort you put into finding a reputable company with excellent customer service ahead of time, the less hassle you’ll have on moving day.
Lift NYC recommends double-checking that the moving company you want to hire is licensed with the state you’re in.
“There are tens of thousands of people claiming to be a ‘moving company’ when in actuality it’s just some guy with a van trying to make some extra money,” says Mike Sulkowska of Lift NYC.
Make sure to read the company’s list of services, fine print, and refund or damage policies, too. For example, some companies don’t lift items that aren’t in boxes (so your stuffed-to-the-brim duffel bags won’t make the cut), while others ask for full payment several weeks early.
Find out the specifics so there are no unwelcome surprises come moving day.
Pro Tip: Use Unpakt to find trustworthy moving companies, compare prices, and book your move online in minutes.
7. Pick the right moving day.
Hire your movers at least a month out so you can plan accordingly. If you have a flexible schedule, play around with potential moving dates and try to find the cheapest time of month to make an appointment.
Moving companies are busiest on weekends, so if you can skip the Saturday chaos and schedule your move for a Tuesday, you might get a significant discount.