Moving house is extremely stressful, but the key to reducing stress levels is good organisation. Many aspects of the move will be in the hands of your solicitor and the estate agents, but there are tasks you’ll need to get underway to ensure that the move runs as smoothly as possible on the day.
The part that almost everyone dreads is the packing, especially if you’ve lived in a property for a number of years. Where do you start? Here are seven top tips to help you get underway and to help you stay as organised as possible.
De-Clutter – Before starting to pack items into boxes, visit each room in the house and evaluate the items in the room. What haven’t you used or seen for one year or more? Does this item need to follow you to your new house? There are essentially three decisions you can make for each item, you can either pack it, sell or donate it to someone else, or chuck it. You need to be firm with your decisions; “I might use it again” is not an option for a de-cluttering process!
Start in the Least Used Rooms – Even though you’re packing to leave the house, whilst you’re going through the process, you still have to live in your property. Daily duties need to carry on as normally as possible, particularly if you have children around. Therefore it’s advisable to start the packing process early, but start from the rooms used the least. Once these rooms are packed up, you can also use them as storage hubs as you begin to pack up belongings from other rooms around the house.
Bite Sized Packing – To keep on top of the packing process, concentrate on one room at a time. Whilst it’s tempting to get caught up with timescales, it’s better to maintain organisation. You’ll find that different rooms command different packing strategies. For example, when you’re packing up the kitchen, you may need to wrap breakable items in paper to protect them. This would differ from the task of packing up your child’s collection of soft toys. If you focus on one room at a time, you can adopt real processes and perhaps get the family working as a team, especially where you’re wrapping items in bubble wrap or paper to protect them.
Box Weight – Even if you’ve hired strong men to carry boxes during your house move, be mindful of their weight. Heavy boxes can be lifted by those with strength, but accidents happen and your treasured possessions can be damaged through collapsing boxes or even worse, someone could get hurt. Also, on the other side of your move, you may need to move the boxes around the house to their intended rooms, so keep them to a weight that you can easily manage.
Label Boxes – Avoid the game of ‘What’s in the box’, there’s nothing more intimidating during a house move than arriving at your new property to be faced with a sea of unlabelled boxes. Also, if you have hired a removal company, they can ensure that boxes are at least delivered to their intended rooms. Therefore, as you pack boxes, make sure you invest in a thick marker pen or some sticky labels to ensure you can label each box. Perhaps you could mark them with their intended room, i.e. Kitchen, Lounge, Bathroom etc. Also, to ensure you get to the essential first, you may wish to add a quick overview of what’s in each box.
Box Stacking – Things will get pretty fraught as you pack up your belongings and boxes will pile up. However, again for safety and for the protection of your belongings, it’s worth putting heavier boxes at the bottom and building lighter boxes up on top of these.
Take Time – In most cases, house moves take time to arrange, they don’t happen overnight, due to all the paperwork and your chain etc. Therefore, give yourself time to pack. It’s a daunting task and one that you will keep putting off until tomorrow, but it’s not worth losing time, because using the time you have will save you so much stress. Start small and work methodically on the tasks and you won’t go far wrong.
To get further advice or assistance with packing and moving house, contact Burnhams Warehouse Removals & Storage in Beaconsfield.