Every Windsor real estate agent knows summer is when most families prefer to move. School is out, vacations are in full force, commitments are fewer and time moves a little slower. Therefore, if you are planning to move in the next few months, let us give you some great tips to stay organized and maintain your stress level to a respectable level. It’s hard to move, especially when young children are involved, but using the checklist below can help whether you are moving a few blocks away or across the country. Remember, it’s not just about packing boxes, it’s also about arranging the transfer of medical and school records, finding child care if needed, packing suitcases for overnight and hotel travel that you don’t want in the moving van, making pet care arrangements, organising food on packing/moving days and creating a separate box that you take with you with all of your must-haves.
First things first: moving requires paperwork, records and important numbers. Keep this information in a central location. Create a binder where copies of everything you need are included. Yes, we now store our contact numbers in our smart phones, but keep an address book here as well as it always happens that we lose our cell contacts when we need them the most. Numbers you will want handy include your real estate agent, mortgage company and moving company. Also in the notebook should be the address of your new home, your moving calendar and all important documents such as passports, birth certificates, etc.
Once you know you are moving, walk around the house and figure out what you are taking with you, selling, tossing and giving away. Organize a yard sale and then have a local charity organisation come the next day to pick up everything else that you don’t want. There is no use in packing and taking anything with you that you no longer have a place for or won’t use. This will only add to your moving budget and it’s always better to start fresh in your new house.
When everything is left that you want, go and start packing what you don’t use very much. For example, if you are moving this summer, then you don’t have a need for winter clothes, jackets, and holiday decorations. Label your boxes and store in a room that is rarely used. Pinterest has great ideas for marking boxes that are terrific when unloading the van and unpacking. When it’s time to pack the rest of your belongings, stick with one room at a time and keep all belongings together. For example, mark boxes “Bedroom 1” and only include items that belong to this room. Don’t mix and match bedroom and kitchen supplies for example. Another good suggestion: Pack what you will need immediately from each room with the word “PRIORITY.” For example, you may want to store your coffee maker, a days worth of silverware, cups and bowls in a bo marked Kitchen Priority. For a bedroom, you may want to pack a box with a set of sheets, pillow, blanket and a special bedtime toy and mark the box Bedroom 2 Priority.
Approximately three weeks prior to moving, make banking changes, ask for school records and contact your medical doctors for referrals and records should you be moving out of the area. This is also an excellent time to cancel or transfer water, utilities, newspaper, cable or anything else that is required.
Two weeks prior: Confirm with moving company the times they will be there and any last-minute changes. Document the conversation and who you spoke with in case of any misunderstandings.
One week prior, make sure that you have filled all of your prescriptions, packed the clothes you will need to travel in when moving, create a box filled with juice snacks, crackers and other foods for hungry children on moving day. If you are hiring a cleaning service for when you move, call and confirm.
A few days prior, use or give away any food that you will no longer need, clean and unplug any electronics. Make sure you have your new set of house keys and confirm that utilities are turned on where you are going. It’s not fun to move on a sweltering hot day only to find that the electric has not been switched on yet.
On the day of moving, have plenty of cold water available for movers (remember, it is summer!), walk around and make sure you have packed everything and don’t forget about the outside. It’s not unheard of for moving vans to pull away when anxious home owners realize they forgot to pack the outdoor toys and garden equipment. If possible, have a friend walk around as well to doublecheck to see if you are missing anything. The day can be an emotionally exhausting experience, so it’s always good to have a friend or family member nearby that can help.
Finally, remember that while moving can be exhausting, it’s the beginning of a new chapter, so try to make the most of it and know that in just a matter of time, you will be happily settled.