How to Make Moving Suck Less

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Tips for making moving a less stressful experience.

There's no way around it—moving sucks. Ask anyone who's done it and they'll agree it's a process that's often a stressful one, as you're literally packing up your entire life and placing it elsewhere. Whether you're moving down the street or across the country, here's a shortlist of tips to help make the whole experience a little smoother.

First, secure your movers once you know your moving date. Personal referrals from friends and colleagues are best! Because let's face it, professional movers are worth the cost and once you've done it, you'll never go back to bribing your friends with pizza and beer for a weekend of their time.

Next, plan, plan and plan. The more prepared you are, the easier the process will be. Make an actual list (either on paper or on your phone/laptop) of each item you'll need to accomplish and map out times on your calendar to do it all. Figure out where your moving boxes will come from, what additional packing materials you may require, etc. Prior to a move is also the perfect time to declutter any unwanted or unneeded items, so make your way little by little through rooms, drawers and bins to figure out what can be donated and what needs to be put in the trash.

Make plans for your children or pets during the move! You're likely going to be busy managing the moving process in real time, so it might be best for the pets or kids to spend some time at a friend or relative's house for the day until the chaos lessens. It's also recommended to make a folder of some kind with all the essential info you'll need for the move. This way, if you need to access any of this important information, it will all be in once place and you'll know exactly where it is.

While packing, ensure your labeling skills are on full display, and pack room by room. And if your situation allows, move smaller items over to your new property bit by bit, leaving the bigger items to be handled by the pros. Of course, this isn't always possible, so knowing which room requires what items will help you get settled in your new digs faster. It's also a good idea to leave packing your essentials until the last minute so you won't have to locate and dig out something you've already packed away. If packing sounds like an absolute nightmare to you, take advantage of some packing services many moving companies offer.

On the day of your big move, be sure to take care of yourself. Stay hydrated, take breaks as needed, and have snacks and prepped meals ready to go so you can easily take a break and refuel as necessary. And while anticipation will be high, it's also wise to get a good night's sleep the night before.

Don't forget that once you've moved, you'll need to update your address in quite a few places and get your utilities set up. Here are a few common places:

  • The U.S. Postal Service, your voter registration, driver's license, employer, and Social Security Administration (if you receive social security benefits).
  • Your financial institutions, accountants, lawyers, doctors and insurance providers.
  • Utilities like gas, water, electric, garbage and recycling, internet, streaming services and other subscriptions.
  • Any e-commerce accounts where you often shop or have auto-ship set up, your library or any associations you belong to or memberships you have.
  • Your close friends and family members.
  • If you have a pet, update the address associated with their microchip.

While moving will likely never be entirely stress free, following these tips will certainly help lighten the load as you begin your new chapter.

Written by Sarah Suydam, Managing Editor for West Michigan Woman.


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