home & office lifestyle
How We Handled Our Recent MoveTuesday, August 23, 2016
In case you missed it, the hubs and I recently moved. In reality, I've been kind of searching (off and on) for about a year for a ho...
When Andre got a job in the city, we realized we probably needed to move somewhere that was more of a mid-point for the two of us, and I got to really looking for somewhere we'd be interested in. He was driving about an hour and a half (traffic, boo!) and I was driving about 15 minutes. After about a month of seriously searching (and viewing and viewing and viewing), I found a house that seemed too good to be true. It was 30 minutes from my job, and cut Andre's commute down to less than 45 minutes. I contacted the landlord, and we were set up with a showing the next day (as were seven other families). We ended up filling out the application on the spot, and we signed the lease that weekend. While we'd been looking for what seemed like forever, the process seemed to move really quickly. We had two weeks to pack up and move in to our new home, and just as little time to move out of our current home. Two weeks may sound like enough time, but it was truly a rush.
The day after we signed our lease, I collected probably close to 50 boxes from a friend and started packing just a little bit at a time. Within a week, we had our clothes in our closet, some toiletries, our electronics, and two of each kind of plastic dish (plates, bowls, cups, etc.) to use. Basically everything else was boxed up. Doing just a little each and every day really helped the process seem not so scary, and helped us get through the move mostly painlessly.
We had a lot of stuff, but not really a lot of stuff, if that makes sense. We were living in about 1000 square feet (two beds, one bath), which seemed a lot more cramped with the things we have than our new home does at closer to 1,700 square feet (3 beds, two baths, plus a garage). I used mostly newspapers to wrap glasses with, but also put to use dishtowels and blankets. That way I was packing things with other stuff that needed to be packed as well. I can say we successfully moved everything without breaking anything.
We rented a 17 foot U-Haul, which we reserved online with a credit card, but we didn't actually have to pay anything until we returned the truck. We were able to fit all of our furniture and several boxes into the truck (which we only made one trip in), and then loaded three more car-fulls of some smaller and more fragile items, which I felt more comfortable toting in my own car. We had family and friends help, and ended up paying less than $100 to physically move everything. You can't really beat that!
We've been in the house for about a three weeks, and everything is mostly out of boxes. The only things left to really unpack are pictures and things that hang. I need to get command hooks to hang those items, so I don't have to put many (if any) holes in the wall. I made sure to only do a little bit each day. For example, I did about half the kitchen one night, and the other half on a different day. I focused on books and DVDs one day, and the closet on another day. Breaking it down into manageable tasks really helped me to not feel too overwhelmed (because of course, I'll be overwhelmed either way).
Some tips? If budget isn't an issue, sure, go all out with a moving company. If you're looking to save some money:
1. Pack a little bit a day over the course of however long you have to pack (two weeks worked perfect for us!).
2. Use (clean) blankets and towels to wrap breakables. This worked wonders for us, and saved up some space. I also used some newspapers, but didn't have to use too much.
3. Pay attention to the tips on the U-Haul site. We had a two bedroom house we were moving out of, including appliances, so we chose the 17 foot truck, which is marked "Home up to 2 bedrooms". If you're unsure, go larger. You can pack extra boxes in there, and use mattresses for padding. If you get the truck and it seems too small, be strategic. Tetris it where you can.
4. Don't forget to load up the vehicles. We packed up the U-Haul, plus mine and Andre's cars. If you have friends and family helping you move, make sure to pack up their cars, too!
5. Ask family and friends to help you move. Heavy lifters? Yes, please! Make sure everyone is bending with their knees, and not lifting with their backs! Buy them lunch/dinner as a thank you! It doesn't have to be expensive. We went with McDonald's, but pizza would be a great option, too!
6. You don't have to unpack right away once you're in! You'll probably be there for a while. Take time to rest. Unpack a little bit each day if you need to. You'll get there.
7. Celebrate your new home! Whether it's with friends, family, or just those you living there. Enjoy your new space!
What tips would you give to someone who's moving?