Couple surrounded by cardboard boxes look at moving checklist
Date Published
June 14, 2019

There are so many things that need to come together perfectly when you’re moving that it may seem impossible. Throwing all your stuff in a suitcase may fly for a weekend trip, but moving homes isn’t a quick vacation.

You should begin planning your move weeks in advance. To streamline things, here are some tips on how to have a successful move.

Start planning your move

The last thing you want to do is pack everything last minute. Even if you are starting weeks ahead, things will come up that you may not have thought about. Our moving checklist and moving guides will help you plan out each step of your move and avoid surprises.

Keep a binder or online spreadsheet with all of your lists of things to do. These could include:

  • a list of supplies to buy
  • your timeline of packing goals
  • any important address changes
  • master list of your boxes and furniture items

Conquer one room or zone at a time

Start with rooms and items that are least used. For example, items in storage in the attic or a rarely used closet can be packed right away, and if it’s summer you can safely pack all of your winter items.

Once you’ve packed something away, it can be like finding a needle in a haystack, so save rooms like your kitchen and bathroom for last.

When you pack your things, think about what items you want in each room of your new home. Rather than trying to puzzle together different items around your home, organize your boxes by room.

Pro mover tip: In each room, make a pile of items to bring, donate, throw away, or sell. Be honest with yourself when you’re going through your things. Haven’t worn that sweater in two years? It’s time to donate it. Make sure you clearly separate these items so you don’t accidentally donate items you mean to keep.

Use the right packing boxes

When you’re packing, use the right box for the right thing.  If you’re packing heavy items like books or dumbbells, they should be in smaller boxes so the weight is manageable. If you’re packing light items like blankets or pillows, they can be put in larger boxes.

Special items can have special boxes. Wardrobe boxes can be purchased if clothes need to be carefully moved. There are also boxes for moving mirrors or glass. Special dish saver boxes are available as well to ensure your dishes get moved in one piece.

Keep valuables and necessities close

When you’re moving, you never want to lose track of an important financial document or family heirloom. Before you begin packing, make a list of all important documents, medication, jewelry, etc.

Organize your documents in a binder and carefully wrap anything important. Pack all of your valuables together so that you don’t lose track of them in the moving process.

On moving day, you should personally move all these items so you know where they are at all times.

It is also a good idea to have a “first night” box. This box contains everything you will need to survive the first night of your move. It should include:

  • Bedding
  • Clothes for that night and the next day
  • Toiletries
  • Food or snacks
  • Trash bags
  • Paper products (plates and cups)
  • First aid kit
  • Cleaning basics
  • Chargers
  • Scissors (you’ll need these to start opening boxes!)

Load the “first night” box last so you’ll have it right away when you get to your new home.

Label boxes effectively

Don’t underestimate the helpfulness of labeling things carefully when you pack. Taking a little extra time to label can make unpacking so much easier later on.

Everyone has different organization methods, but here are two ways to effectively label boxes:

  • Colors – Use different colored tape, stickers, or markers for different rooms. This makes it easy for movers and yourself to discern which box goes where.
  • Numbering – Label boxes by box number, room, and the main contents inside (example: 15 Kitchen: Silverware + Plates). Writing down the box number allows you to keep track of how many boxes you have and refer back to the master list to make sure nothing has been lost. The label will also give you a good idea of what is in the box so you know what to unpack first.

Pro mover tip: Labeling boxes on two sides and on top will make it easy to identify. And always remember to label boxes with “Fragile,” “Handle with care,” or “This side up.”

Hire a professional mover

All of this information can sound overwhelming, but hiring a certified professional mover can alleviate a lot of stress for you. Leave the heavy lifting to AAA Movers so you can take a step back and enjoy your new home.

Contact us to request a free quote today!