Packing can be an exciting time - it’s the first step to take before settling into a new place you’ll call home. But even with the excitement, packing and the subsequent move can be a huge hassle. Your life is temporarily in disarray and navigating around a maze of boxes can leave you feeling disoriented in your current home. To make your move as smooth as possible, here are some tips to help you through the process.
Time to donate, consign, or discard
The process of moving is much faster when you have less stuff to pack. In the weeks leading up to your move, go through everything you own and see what can be donated, consigned, or thrown out.
Start by going through your papers first. You’ll be surprised how many old bills, receipts, and junk mail you can throw out. Next, go through your closet and donate or consign items that you never wear. Throw out anything that is stained, faded, or has holes (unless it’s your favourite shirt!). The same goes for outerwear and shoes. Also, go through your kitchen and donate any items that barely get any use. Finally, if you’re planning to get new furniture in your new home, donate any old items to thrift stores. Many stores like Habitat for Humanity and the Women in Need Society pick up items for free.
Figure out your moving strategy
The move itself will go smoothly if you follow a plan for the big day itself. If you’re relying on friends and family to help you move, at what time will they need to be available? Or will you be hiring help for the entire process? You can also consider a combination - friends to move smaller items, and professional movers for heavier ones.
Also, will you be renting your own truck? Be aware that while a rental truck is much cheaper, you should confirm that the size of truck you need will be available at a location near you on the day you request. Some rental companies will say a truck is available if it’s within a 200km radius.
Find free (or cheap) packing supplies
You may get sticker shock once you start looking for packing supplies - boxes, tape, and bubble wrap can add up quickly. To save on cost, look for tape and bubble wrap at hardware stores rather than office supplies store. They often sell their products for significantly less money.
For free boxes, look at grocery, clothing, and liquor stores. Liquor stores in particular have durable boxes made to withhold the weight of alcohol in glass bottles. Alternatively, look on Facebook Marketplace, Kijiji, Craigslist, or any other local forum for free boxes.
And don’t forget the free ‘boxes’ you already have! Things like suitcases, hampers, baskets, drawers, and gym bags can all be used to move items.
Pack everything hanging on the walls first
Moving can be overwhelming, and not knowing where to start can discourage you from starting to pack. To get in the packing mode, start with items hanging on your walls first. Chances are you won’t need artwork in the weeks leading up the move.
Nothing is more frustrating than moving into your new home and having to open all of your boxes to find items that you immediately need. To avoid the madness of sifting through all of your belongings just to find a pan, label your boxes with key items and the room the box belongs in.
Pack an essentials box
When moving out, you’ll likely have to give it a thorough clean. To make life easier, place cleaning supplies, garbage bags, mops etc. in a box for quick access. Also, don’t forget to make sure your personal essentials, like a change of clothes, toiletries, and phone charger, are readily available.