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May is National Moving Month but if you’ve got an upcoming move, it probably feels more like “How Can I Possibly Move This Month?”
Often times a move is caused by a big life change which can add stress to an already stressful situation. While you’re dealing the changes life is dealing you, you also have to deal with every last little detail that’s involved with a move. And we all know there are lots of little details.
It’s not uncommon for people to feel overwhelmed with the thought of packing up their entire lives into little boxes and relocating. But just like anything else, it is more about preparing for the big day then the big day itself. Remember, if you fail to plan, then you’re planning to fail.
Start by creating a schedule and work backward from the move day. Schedule days to de-clutter and days to pack, taking the house one room at time. If you wait until the last minute to de-clutter and pack you’ll end up with everything thrown into a random box you’ll be left to deal with at the new house. And trust me, I’ve seen it time and again with clients, those “need to go through” boxes will sit in a closet until the next move!
De-cluttering long before the movers show up at the front door is one of the most important things you can do to make a move go more smoothly and be more cost effective. Go through every closet, drawer, file cabinet and room in the house and get rid of what you don’t need anymore. The less stuff you have to move, the less time it takes for the movers to load and unload the truck which means you’re saving money on their hourly rate.
Once you’ve done the first pass of your home, take another look. Are there things in your “keep” pile that really belong in the “donate” pile? Again, getting rid of it now will save you from having to pack it up later.
By de-cluttering the garage a month or two before the big day, you’ll free up storage space for the boxes you’re starting to pack. If you find that most of the stuff in the garage hasn’t been used in years, that’s a sure sign its time to let it go.
It’s easy to just toss a shelf full of books into a box, but don’t. Books take up a lot of space, are heavy to move and tend to stay in their boxes at their new home. I can’t tell you how many times clients of mine have boxes and boxes of books they never unpacked from a prior move. So be brutal and let go of more books than you think you should. Donate them to a local library or senior center.
Be careful of hanging on to old books because you think they are valuable. It’s very rare that an old book is worth anything, so if you think you have a first edition of “Great Expectations,” call a book dealer.
Once you’ve gotten rid of the extra “stuff” it’s time to start using the consumable items you have – starting with the pantry. Eat and use up everything in your cupboards that you can and whatever you do, do not make another trip to bulk-product store.
Taking these steps to de-clutter and organize before your move will help ensure that your move is a smooth one.
Where to send your stuff
Donate unwanted items to a local charity or considering having an estate sale.
Give special items to family or friends who will really appreciate them.
Donate unused / unwanted food to a local food bank.
Take old computers, paint and household chemicals to a hazardous collection site.
Article from The Cincinnati Enquirer, 05/19/2012 by Tracy McCubbin (founder of dClutterfly, dclutterfy.com)
Whether you need help organizing or moving, HomeServicesLink can help. We have insured, reliable and screened professional organizers and moving companies to assist you.