Moving Soon? Keep These Tips in Mind

Moving day is approaching fast! Whether it’s your first move after college or your third in three years, moving day can still be a headache-inducing, hangry-ridden struggle bus. 

Take a look at these moving tips to make the process a little easier.

Route mail to your new address.

Fill out this quick, easy form on the USPS website. This forwards mail to your new address for a year and you’ll also get a host of coupons to places like Lowe’s and Best Buy that come in handy when you’re setting up a new space.

Don’t forget to update your address for recurring subscriptions and payments. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Credit cards
  • Banking
  • Amazon Prime membership/delivery addresses
  • Stitch fix
  • Trunk club
  • Credit cards
  • Loan payments
  • Magazines
  • Newspaper subscriptions (holla you old school readers—we salute you.)
  • Cell phone bill

You’ll have to change your address for these things eventually, even if you’ve set up mail forwarding, so you may as well do it now!

Reserve a U-Haul.

If you’re 18 or older, you can rent a U-Haul truck. Don’t be deceived by the clever $19.99 around-town rate posted on the sides of their trucks. It’ll probably cost you more like $50 to $100 to rent for the day after gas, fees, and extra supplies. Which, for the record, buying moving supplies from U-Haul can actually be a fairly comparable and very convenient option (plus, you can return unused boxes for a refund).

Set up internet in your new space.

This, of course, is a top priority for many. Research options to see if there are better deals available than your current service provider. One money-saving hack: buy your own modem/router and self-install (call your provider’s customer service for extra assistance if needed).

Enlist help.

Depending how much stuff you have, you may need half a dozen friends or just one helper. If you are asking friends to help, a considerate start time is after 9:30 a.m. on a weekend for an in-town move (check out our guide for what to get these friends when they help you move). Also, keep these friends close. Friends who help friends move are good people.

Get rid of stuff.

This is a great time to do an inventory of your clothes, your things, and your space. Practice that “minimalist” mindset all the hipsters are raving about (or live up to your own flat-brimmed, mustachioed hipsterness). Great avenues of sale include places like Ebay, Craigslist, OfferUp, Poshmark, or you can send an email with the items you’re selling/getting rid of to your local friends for an online garage sale. A great move: give first dibs or discounts to the people who are helping you move.

Budget for new things.

Moving is expensive. The real costs aren’t necessarily in the sneaky expensive U-Haul rental: they often come after moving day. Perhaps your old couch doesn’t fit and you need to buy a new one. The hardwood floors in your new place are gorgeous but now you need to buy a $200 rug. Then add garbage cans, new towels to match the new bathroom paint color, or a kitchen cart to make up for lost storage space. For these one-off purchases, IKEA is your friend; and don’t forget to set some money aside to make a space your own.

Fill a clear plastic bin with your moving supplies.

Yes, clear. This creates easy x-ray vision in a sea of bins and boxes. Fill it with moving supplies and your cleaning products of choice (get that security deposit back in full). Our favorites include:

  • Duct tape
  • Packing tape
  • Bungee cords
  • Permanent markers
  • Scissors
  • Tools for disassembling furniture
  • Paper towels
  • Anti-bacterial wipes
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Magic erasers (yes, they might actually be magic)

Also consider stocking up on these moving supplies that will make moving day so much easier:

  • Ratchet straps
  • Mattress bag
  • Furniture dollies
  • Heavy-duty saran wrap (for wrapping drawers)

Pack an overnight bag.

Pack like you’re going to a slumber party. After a day of heavy lifting and scuttling around from old place to new place, this overnight bag will be a little oasis of toothpaste, clean clothes, and cell phone chargers. Teddy bear optional.

Plan for food.

Moving can be a lengthy ordeal. Stomachs will start howling for food on cue (if not before with all the moving-day festivities). Plan accordingly: get some easy meals from the grocery store beforehand, order pickup, or go out to eat. If you opt to eat at home, don’t forget to leave yourself utensils, plates, and cups!

Plan for good first impressions with your new neighbors.

If you’re moving into an apartment or condo, be extra mindful of the board rules. Is there padding for an elevator to prevent the sides from being damaged? What are the rules for propping doors? Where will your moving truck park (if you’re getting a moving truck)? The last thing you want to do is get on your new neighbors’ bad sides before you move in. If you want to be extremely considerate, print off flyers with details of your moving day (date, time, truck location) and hang them around your new apartment building or condo complex if your move will cause inconvenience to new neighbors.

Come up with a labeling system for each room.

Use duct tape, stickers, or write each room’s name with a giant fat sharpie. This helps friends know where to put boxes in your new space. Just remember to label boxes on their sides, not on top, so you can see the descriptions even when stacked.

Treat fragile items carefully.

Besides being gentle with the obvious things like plates and glassware, sometimes furniture is not as sturdy as you may think. Give extra TLC to anything you bought from a store that rhymes with SHMIKEA and are now moving. We love this Swedish genius of a store, but the affordable furniture has a tendency to change from its original shape while moving (except not in a cool way like a skinchanger #GOT).

Plan for moving your mattress.

Have you figured out how to move your mattress? It’s usually the hardest part, logistically speaking. Decide the best course of action to ship your current mattress, buy a new one, or use a U-Haul or pickup truck for some DIY hauling. We’re of course biased, but if you’re looking for a mattress with free shipping and is meant to move with you, check out OSO—a mattress that ships straight to your doorstep and can be folded like a taco for easy future moves without a truck.

Send your new address to friends and family.

You can go the cute route with something classy (Tiny Prints, Minted, or Shutterfly are great options) or just send an email with your new address to save on postage and cut down on the hullabaloo.

Relax and soak in the excitement of a new place.

It’s a new chapter! You’re starting fresh! Yes, annoying at times, but it’s also remarkably full of shiny new potential.

Good luck and sleep well!