If you’re part of a military family, chances are that you move a lot. Moving your entire life around from place to place is never easy, but if you follow some of these helpful tips, you can make your move virtually stress free.
- Consolidate and toss. Before the packing starts, consolidate duplicate items and get rid of unused or unwanted items. If an item is still in its box from your last move or you haven’t used it in the past year, then you probably don’t need it, and it’s time to get rid of it. Have a garage sale for those items and spend that cash celebrating a new start in your next home.
- Good boxes. Start by consolidating any storage you might already have in plastic tubs or dresser drawers. Everything on top of the nightstand, like lotions, clocks, or pictures, can probably fit inside of the nightstand if you have drawers in it, and this will also save you a box. If you are purchasing boxes, make sure to get sturdy ones. A 32lb edge-crush test rating is good, and these boxes usually only cost about $1.
- Pack the unessential s first. Always start packing accessories, photos, and decorative items first. Since these aren’t necessary to live with, you can start packing them up several weeks before you move. Then it’s easy to see what’s left to be packed or gotten rid of before the big day.
- Pack your kitchen last and unpack it first. You’ll need to make and eat food up until the moment you leave, so the kitchen should be the last to go. However, several kitchen items can be packed ahead of time if you don’t think you’ll need them in the weeks before you move (such as a mixer, waffle irons, crock pots, etc.). The kitchen should also be the first thing you unpack; Nobody wants to hunt through boxes the morning after you move in just to try to find a glass or bowl. Mark kitchen boxes by using different colored duct tape, then you can easily unpack the kitchen the day you move in. You would be surprised at how much it eases your stress.
- Set up your bed second. After unpacking the kitchen, the second thing to do is set up your bed frame, mattress, and clean sheets. I recommend leaving essential linens (such as sheets, blankets, and pillow cases) unpacked in your car or suitcase for easy and quick access. This way, you can end your moving day with a better night’s sleep to help you the next day when the real unpacking begins.
- DIY or movers? Whether you choose to move yourself or hire movers is entirely up to you. For those of you who like being in control and will be worried or bothered by someone else handling your possessions, don’t hire movers. Instead, think about enlisting helpful friends and family then kindly and politely delegate tasks the way you would like them done. If you’re more of the care-free and laid back type that really dreads the whole process, then hiring movers might be the best way to stay organized, on time, and stress free.
- Keep a cooler stocked and nearby. It might seem silly, but you’ll be glad and so will anyone else helping you move when you bring a cooler stocked full of snacks and cold beverages. Moving heavy items and even just the amount of walking you do during a move burns many calories. People can get low blood sugar or dehydrated quickly, causing tempers to flare and stress levels to rise. Calm it all down by simply bringing the cooler. Take breaks every once in a while to eat a snack and rest your feet.
- Choose packing tape wisely. You need sturdy tape that will prevent your boxes from coming open unexpectedly. My suggestion is to buy several different colors of duct tape and a tape gun. The tape gun will allow you to tape boxes quickly, and the different colors will allow you organize your boxes by room. Assign each room in your house a different color of tape. For example, the kitchen is orange, the living room is blue, the dining room is brown, etc. When you move into the new house, you can easily bring each colored box to its respective room. This will make unpacking much easier.
- Save newspapers and magazines for packing paper. You can even recycle the paper after you’re done. Using old newspapers will save you money and keep your items secure. All you have to do is empty the trash can or paper shredder in your home office to find lots of usable packing paper. If you know about the move several weeks in advance, you can collect newspapers and grocery ads in a bag for later use.
- Invest in mattress pads and furniture bags. They are worth the money and the time it takes to put them on. These can literally save hundreds if not thousands of dollars. Simply wrap up your couches, mattresses, grandma’s china cabinet, and any other expensive or valuable pieces of furniture with the mattress pads and furniture bags. This should prevent them from breaking or getting holes or scratches.
Moving doesn’t have to be daunting or stressful. When the process is done right, you can actually feel excited about your move and ready for a new adventure. If you are in the military and still looking for a new house in the area you’ll be moving to, we would be happy to help you secure an affordable VA home loan. At Low VA Rates, we offer you the lowest rates in the country. Wouldn’t it be nice to feel secure in your move and your new home? Give us a call at 866-569-8272 to get started.