12 Moving Tips For a Smooth Transition…from Someone Who’s Moved 12 Times

best moving tips
Photo: Rawpixel

Despite the fact that I hate to move, I've done it 12 times in my life…mostly in the past 15 years throughout college and during my twenties. So through trial and error, I've developed some pretty helpful moving tips and tricks. Keep reading to check them out!   


1. Seriously, one of the best moving tips is one you already know: label every box with its contents.

If you only use one of these tips, this should be it. When you desperately need that hairdryer you'll thank me. It doesn't need to be anything fancy, just grab a Sharpie and jot down what's inside as you pack it.

2. Number every box and keep a corresponding list. 

This is another one of my favorite moving tips: Jot down the major items in each box as well. This is important so you don't lose anything… make sure you check off each box as it comes in the door. This way, you'll know immediately if you're missing one. Which is especially helpful if you're using movers; don't let them leave until every box is accounted for!

3. Buy a wardrobe moving box.

They have rods across the top so you can hang your clothes inside, eliminating the need to take everything off the hangers and then put them all back on once you arrive at your new place. And it keeps everything wrinkle-free too!

4. Don't pack things in trash bags.

I learned this one the hard way. I packed most of my clothing in white trash bags and the movers lost a few of them… which means I lost a lot of my wardrobe. Even if you're not using movers though, I still don't recommend it. A trash bag filled with trash looks pretty much the same as a trash bag filled with clothing. Don't risk it!


best moving tips
Photo:  Laura Stolfi

5. Start super early.

Everything takes longer than you think, from packing to loading the truck to driving to your new location. Allow for the twice the amount of time you think you'll need, and the whole process will go much more smoothly. There's nothing worse than pulling an all-nighter packing boxes so you're ready for moving day.

6. Plan the logistics well in advance.

This advice was handed down to me, and its become my one of my go-to moving tips. Be sure to book everything as early as possible… U-Hauls are in high demand during the summer when the majority of moves happen. I have learned this the hard way too. And the same goes for moving companies.  

7. Where to get moving boxes for free (or cheap).

Drop by your local grocery store to ask whether they have any empty boxes you can take off their hands for them. Or try these places or these. 

8. Prepare your new home ahead of time.

If you can get in your new spot before moving day, clean from top to bottom and paint the walls if you're planning to do so. That way, you can start unpacking right when you get there and you won't have to shuffle boxes and furniture around.


best moving tips
Photo:  Fancycrave

9. Pack a suitcase with essentials.

There's nothing worse than looking through tons of boxes in search of an outfit for work, a bowl for cereal, etc. Instead, think ahead and pack a suitcase or two with all of the necessities for the next couple of days.

10. Place each box in the correct room in the new space.

Trust me, this is one the best moving tips, and it will save so many headaches. It will make the unpacking process go much faster. And you'll be able to do this because you labeled them all as recommended in tip #1, right?! 

11. Stay hydrated and fed.

Whether it's hot outside or not, you're going to need more water than usual on moving day… and you're also not going to want to think too hard about what to have for lunch (and then you'll be too exhausted to figure it out by dinner time). So make sure you pack snacks in an easy-to-find place and grab a few local takeout menus before moving day. 

12. When in doubt, hire the pros!

If you're not sure you can do the move yourself (physically… or emotionally!) don't hesitate to splurge on a professional moving company. You can always save money in other ways: here are some useful tips to save money during a house move. Make sure the movers are licensed and insured, and check their reviews online before your hire them.

Any other helpful moving tips? Feel free to share them in the comments section!


best moving tips
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