Dos and Don’ts: Your First Move
Moving into a new place for the first time is an exciting, but oftentimes overwhelming task. Where do you even begin? Without prior moving experience, you may feel like you are drowning in a sea of boxes. Here’s what to (and what not to) do when moving for the first time:
DO: Label Everything
The thought of labeling every single box may seem like a tedious task, but it pays off in the end and makes unpacking much easier. You can be as specific as you want, such as writing the exact contents of the box, but you should always write a general location for where the items need to go. You should also denote whether the contents of the box are fragile, so anyone handling it is aware.
DON’T: Wait Until the Last Minute
You may think you can pack up your things in one night, but you are likely underestimating the amount of things you own and how long it will take to get it all organized and packed. There are probably some items that you didn’t even consider because they are stored away out of sight, but you still need to take them with you. Give yourself plenty of time; start packing about a week in advance. This will allow you to take breaks and pick back up later rather than rushing around the night before moving day.
DO: Gather Supplies
You will need more than just boxes when packing all your belongings. Determine what you will need for supplies before you begin so you can purchase everything you need ahead of time. You will likely need boxes of various sizes, packing paper, plastic wrap, and permanent markers. Don’t underestimate what you need; it’s better to have extra than to have to go back to the store in the middle of packing.
Be mindful of how you arrange items in boxes. Don’t overstuff or pack too many heavy items into one box; you may end up damaging items or make the heavy lifting even more difficult. Pack heavy items in small boxes rather than creating one extremely heavy load. Breakable items should be cushioned with plenty of padding and packing paper in the gaps to make sure the items do not shift.
DO: Get Rid of Unnecessary Items
It can be tempting to throw everything into boxes and tell yourself that you will go through it all later, but going through your items as you pack can really help to lighten your load. Sort items into three piles: donate, recycle, and trash. If you are having a hard time parting with some items, think of it this way: if you haven’t used it in a year, you probably don’t need it.
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