Before a big move, there are so many things to consider. Even if you’re partnering with a trusted mover, you’ve got to make sure every room of your home is accounted for, from the biggest things, like a sofa bed, to the tiniest of details, like that antique sculpture handed down from your family that’s the size of a golf ball.
While it can be exhausting, there are ways you can alleviate the stress and make your things work for you during the packing and moving process, and we’re here to give you the tools to make it happen. Without further ado, here are our top 24 best ways to hack your upcoming move.
Anything with the capacity to hold things should be packed with stuff, such as pots with lids, Tupperware containers, and shoeboxes. Use what you already have to store smaller items that you need to pack. Then you can pack those containers inside your other boxes, and you’re ready to go.
Don’t spend a ton of time taking clothes off hangers and putting them in boxes – instead, use a trash bag to wrap the clothes, then tie the bottoms off, and you’re done. They’re easy to carry, can fit anywhere, and when you arrive at your new home, simply place them in the closet and remove the trash bags. Good as new!
For clothes that go in drawers, like jeans or t-shirts, you should consider a newly popular technique instead of folding, which is rolling. It may seem counterintuitive, but rolling actually takes up less space than folding. And less space is more when it comes to moving.
Do you have spare or old fitted sheets somewhere in your home? If so, it’s a good idea to put one on both sides of your mattress before loading it up. While we recommend using a mattress pad, a fitted sheet is a great alternative if you don’t have one on-hand.
Even the cleanest moving trucks aren’t clean enough for your mattress. Small debris can easily get stuck in the truck or make its way in during the move, with so much being taken in and out, so you want to make sure your mattress can stay nice and protected from damage.
No, we don’t mean to grab a cold beer (unless it’s for after you’re done moving, as a reward!). Some liquor stores reuse their boxes and thus will not give them out freely, but others have no problems with it, and liquor store boxes – with separators for wine or beer bottles – are a great way to store all kinds of items, from delicate kitchenware to shoes.
You might think you have a great understanding of where your stuff goes, but once it’s not in order, things can get confusing. Taking pictures can help you figure out where you want everything to fit. But it’s even more important behind the TV or wherever you set up your wires. Take a picture of your setup before you pack it up so you can set it back up exactly how you like it.
Swing by the post office and pick up some priority mail envelopes before your big move. Why? To store any papers you may have, from artwork to important documents. Then you can stack the envelopes on top in another box and rest assured they won’t get damaged
With an upcoming move, be sure to prepare by not throwing away your used toilet paper rolls. You can use them for a few things, but the best way to use them is to store various wires and electrical cables like extension cords, HDMI cables, and more.
It’s a great idea to write on the sides of boxes (and not the top) to tell yourself what’s inside, but color-coding can take it up a notch, especially when unloading. With color-coded boxes, you can easily get them to the proper rooms without a second glance.
When you’re moving, your routine gets thrown off, including the stuff you routinely use every day. To combat this, use a duffel or small bag for your basics, like your toiletries, laptop, and a change of clothes. It’s also a good idea to include a first-aid kit in this bag – the last thing you need is to not be able to find a band-aid when you need one.
We don’t recommend using your clothes to wrap things, but the kitchen needs to be wrapped up better than perhaps anywhere else in your home. To do this, you can use oven mitts for knives, and keep your utensils in their organizers (using plastic wrap to stop them from spilling). You can also use a blanket on the TV (inside its original box). If you don’t have the original box, that’s okay; some companies now sell moving boxes specifically for TVs. It’s worth your while to learn how best to pack your TV, as it’s an expensive item that can easily get broken.
For anything like shampoo or conditioner, you should not use clothes to wrap them up. Instead, wrap them in plastic to make sure they don’t leak and store them in their own specific box so that, if they do leak, it’s just on each other and not on your valuables.
For the heaviest of items, like books, use a suitcase with wheels. This will make it easier to move those heavy items out of the house without risking an injury.
If you have the time and patience, it can be worth your while to cut handles in the sides of boxes, making it far easier to carry them. Simply slide a V-shape into the sides, then press inward to form a triangle.
After you move, no one wants to go through the trouble of changing their address, setting up new WiFi, and making sure all the proper bills are sent to the right place. Instead, do so beforehand, so that you can rest and relax once the long day is done.
You should defrost your fridge at least twelve hours before you move out, if not 48 hours. This gives it enough time to thaw and dry out before new tenants move in.
You can get certain tax breaks from moving expenses, so be sure to track each and every one.
For those smaller items, like nails, or the antiques we mentioned above, use sandwich bags. This will help prevent them from getting lost in the cracks and crevices in the boxes full of bigger items.
While it can be chaotic and difficult, the best way to have a successful move is to stay organized throughout the entire process. From color-coded boxes to wrapping each dish, these are some of our favorite ways to hack the move and stay organized so that once you’ve arrived in your new home, unpacking is easy and painless.
Now, let’s move on to some of our more detailed, specific hacks. When you move, your furniture will have left deep dents in the carpets. To make sure you leave your old home spotless, you can place a piece of ice in those dents (we know it sounds weird). As the ice melts, it will soften up the dented fabric enough that it will return to a relatively regular form.
Like dents, broken glass is something you obviously want to avoid, but in case it does happen, it’s good to know what to do. When you’re moving, broken glass can create even more problems than usual, since the pieces can get lodged in your stuff. To make sure you get every little, tiny shard, use a piece of bread! It sounds ridiculous, but bread is soft and spongy and can clean up even the smallest of glass crumbs.
When removing nails from walls, it’s incredibly easy to accidentally scuff those walls, as hammers are made of pretty heavy metal, and it’s difficult to be precise. To avoid unnecessary scuffing (and losing your security deposit just because of removing nails), wrap a rubber band around the head of your hammer so when it does bounce off the wall, it does it safely.
Rubber bands are versatile on moving day! One of the worst ways to mess up your whole moving schedule is getting locked out of your home or apartment, and it happens more often than you’d think, as people are moving in and out, and sometimes you forget to unlock the door handle or otherwise. You can use a rubber band to hold your front door open, so you don’t get locked out.
Finally, for those with lots of makeup, you can use cotton balls to make sure it doesn’t get ruined in the move. Simply place cotton balls in your makeup containers, like your compact, to act as a cushion so you don’t end up unpacking a powdery mess.
For a more quick and painless move, you’ll need a moving company you can trust. Contact us today to get an estimate – we’d love to help!