Moving House 101: Helpful Tips for Making it Less Stressful

Moving House 101: Helpful Tips for Making it Less Stressful

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Moving House 101: Helpful Tips for Making it Less Stressful

Whether you are moving out of the country, to another city, or five miles down the road, moving house takes time, effort, and is stressful.  A recent survey conducted by OnePoll found that 45% of respondents say moving is by far the most stressful event in life, followed by going through a breakup or divorce (44%), and getting married (33%). In this article, we are going to discuss the ways you can get ready and organized and tackle your move like a champion!

Get organized and plan ahead 

Moving is a big endeavor, with a lot of steps, so you need to get ready organized, and plan ahead. Start by making a schedule and checklist so you don’t forget anything. Here are a few suggestions to get you started:  

  • Create a moving folder (physical file or an electronic file) for all of your move-related documentation, receipts,  estimates, important documents, and notes.  
  • Create a budget for your move. Before you begin researching companies and quotes, determine how much you want to budget for your move and then estimate the costs/expenses that fit within your budget.
  • Create a move calendar to help you keep track of important dates such as move-out and move-in dates, packing schedule, closing date (if buying a home), lease termination date (if renting), travel dates, and other deadlines.

Stock up on moving supplies

You are going to need moving boxes of all sizes, packing paper, bubble wrap, packaging tape, Sharpie permanent markers, sticker labels, scissors, box cutters, trash bags, blankets (to protect furniture, mirrors, and TV), felt pads (to protect floors while moving large furniture), and plastic bins (if you plan to reuse them for storage).

If at all possible, start packing up items that you won’t be needing for the next month or so. Packing ahead is a lot less stressful than trying to get it all done at once or under a time constraint. 

Get rid of stuff    

The last thing you want to do is spend your time and energy packing and moving items you don’t actually want or need. Instead, lighten your workload by going through everything in your home and decide if it’s actually worth hanging on to or whether to donate or dump it.

Start with one room at a time. Although packing and sorting through a life’s worth of belongings and parting with possessions can be difficult for a lot of people, moving is the perfect opportunity to get rid of excess stuff that’s only taking up space and bogging you down.

Create a labeling system

Before you start writing on boxes, come up with a plan for how you are going to label them. If you are super-organized, you might even want to number your boxes and make a corresponding list of contents for each numbered box for easy access on the other side. This will save you a lot of time searching for specific items in the weeks after your move. You may even want to take photos of your items for your inventory. 

Start the process early

Leaving all of the packing, cleaning, and moving details until the last minute will likely multiply your stress tenfold. Some aspects of your move, like decluttering, can be done weeks or even months ahead of time. Others, like packing, can be done slowly over a few weeks, leaving only the essential tasks until the last minute.

Pack your belongings

Consider items you’ll need for the first night in your new place and pack those items together such as bedding, shower curtains, coffeemaker, clothes, snacks, laundry detergent, dish detergent, and toiletries. Make sure you understand how to pack items like lamps, vacuums, and small appliances such as blenders, microwaves, TVs, and computer equipment. Make sure to note if the contents inside are “fragile” or heavy. 

Pay attention to the weight of your boxes. If you make them too heavy, they become difficult to move and are susceptible to breaking. If you don’t fill them completely, fragile items can bounce around and break. It’s also a good idea to pull aside all your valuables that you don’t want to pack.

These will go with you in your vehicle, in the truck cab, or on the plane. Belongings to take with you include legal documents, family heirlooms, and other precious items you hold dear.

Don’t pack these items with other belongings 

Some items can be hazardous during the moving process, so it is best to move them separately or dispose of them before the move. For example, tools, painting equipment, and cleaning chemicals should be packed together in clearly marked boxes. You may want to use plastic totes to prevent leaks.

Pack bottles and medications together and keep them separate from other belongings. Other items to pack separately include fire extinguishers, ammonia, paint thinner, varnishes, heating agents like propane and Sterno, and auto batteries.

Plan to disconnect and connect

You will need to schedule a cut-off date for your current utility services such as electric, gas, water, internet, cable, trash, and others before you go. Plan to call about a week ahead of your move and schedule the disconnections for the day after you move just in case something unexpected comes up. You will want to provide notice and cancel local memberships like fitness organizations (gym, yoga), business associations, social clubs, etc. as well.

You will also need to research utility services for your new location, make any required down payments or security deposits, and schedule a start-date, preferably a day or so before you move in. 

Hire a professional cleaning service

Having to thoroughly clean your home on top of everything else on your to-do list, might just be the tipping point that sends you over the edge. If your budget allows, why not hire a professional cleaning service to do the move-out clean for you. After all, they are experts at efficiency and will clean places in your home that you may forget to clean or that haven’t been cleaned for years.  

Say goodbye 

Saying goodbye to your friends, family members, favorite places, and your old home can be difficult, but it’s also an important step in moving on. If you’re moving far away and it’s possible that you won’t see a lot of these people or places again, take the time to give an earnest goodbye. Let your last memories of your old home be good ones.

Be prepared come launch day

There are some necessities you are going to need easy access to on moving day, like toilet paper, paper towels, markers, scissors, disinfectant wipes, misc. cleaning supplies, the vacuum, kids’ toys (if you have any), your pet’s water bowl, energy snacks, and water bottles to get you through the day.  

Final words

I think we can all safely agree that moving is never an easy task, but if you can keep these tips in mind, you’ll be able to get through it like a boss and with a lot less stress!

Partner with award-winning Oakland County MI REALTOR® – Tom Gilliam   

Tom Gilliam is proud to be a trusted REALTOR® in Oakland MI for the past 20 years – offering his guidance and expertise to both home buyers and sellers. Tom understands that buying or selling a home is a significant financial and life decision and that you are looking for someone you can trust. As your agent, he will protect your interests, advocate for you, negotiate on your behalf, and guide you towards a smooth and successful transaction.   

Whether you are ready to buy a home in Oakland County MI or its time to list your your current property, feel free to reach out to Tom directly at (248) 790-5594 or you can get in touch with him by email.

Tom Gilliam, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Classic
29630 Orchard Lake Rd.
Farmington Hills 48334
Direct: 248-790-5594
Office: 248-737-6800
Email: Tom @
License #314578