Making moving day easier

There are plenty of articles and clever websites to help you move, telling you how to cancel your milk, change your bank and inform the premium bonds chaps you’ve moved, so I’m not about to repeat all that has gone before. However, I did think we could consolidate a few tips to help you on moving day.  I’m making the massive assumption that you’ve got a removal company helping and you aren’t doing a DIY move it job.  So forgive me if you’re doing it yourself but some of these tips will apply ...keeping biscuits close at hand applies both to removal men and family members alike!

In no particular order

  •  It’s really dull but de-clutter before the removal men arrive.  You are paying these guys to move you and moving piles of junk that you meant to take to Charity is a real waste of time.  Be ruthless - moving is a good opportunity.  Set yourself small target areas and don’t beat yourself up if you want to keep a tatty old jug - that’s fine too as long as you love it.
  • Get a quote for packing from the removal men. If you’ve got children you’ll be amazed at how much quicker and more efficiently these guys can pack up a family house.  It takes them two days when it would probably take us nearer a week.  They lovingly wrap all your crockery and bits and bobs, they don’t hold back on paper and bubble wrap.  The packing service is invaluable.
  • Photograph every cupboard (kitchen included) in the new house – it can really help with unpacking boxes.  Don’t just label kitchen but label it ‘tinned food 2nd left shelf of pantry cupboard’.  It might seem detailed but you won’t end up with a pile of boxes in the middle of the room wondering which is critical and where to put it.
  • Print out a floor plan of the new house and label each box according to the floor plan and then give a copy to your removal men. You should also mark where you want big pieces of furniture – do the measuring before you get there.  This means they will put it in the right place even if you’re somewhere else in the house the minute they arrive.  You could use coloured post it notes for furniture but do not leave them on the furniture after arrival - sticky residue does not do furniture any good long term.
  • Some boxes you might not need for a while so write Long Term/Not Urgent and load all the Long Term/Not Urgent boxes into one place. That way you can unpack the more important things and make it feel like home without living among the packing boxes.  The less urgent ones can be unpacked at your leisure.    However, if they are still not unpacked in 6 months consider shipping the whole lot to charity as you clearly haven’t needed anything in there!  Mark clothes with the season so you can wait to unpack the winter clothes if you're moving in summer. 
  • As soon as the beds are in place, make them! It might seem petty but there is nothing more depressing than climbing up the stairs exhausted after a full day, and finding you’ve got to make your bed.  Do it as a priority – I promise you, you will thank me on the day!
  • It is suggested it’s a good idea to give your removal men a cash tip on arrival, saying ‘for lunch and drinks and stuff’.  You know they will have brought lunch so they will pocket the money but they will know you’re a nice person and you’re going to see them right. It’s more important they start the job with warm feelings about you than go away at the end thinking you’re amazing when there is no more work to be done!
  •  If you’ve already got the keys to the new house don’t put them in a suit jacket which ends up in the wardrobe being loaded onto a truck.  Keep it with you at all times.  The same goes for the car keys.  I've lost count of the numbers of stories of car keys in removal trucks. 
  • Throughout the moving process, It’s handy to have one note book in which you keep all the information, phone numbers, things going on, contacts etc.  Keep that book with you at all times on moving day.  You never know who you might need to call.
  • Don’t forget to take a meter reading on your last day...and set up post redirection.  It’s really helpful if you can leave the new people in your house a sheet or two of labels with your new address so they can send anything on.  More likely they will do it and important post won’t go astray.
  • If you're feeling generous create a note book of useful information for the buyers of your house.  Start it early, and just jot down things as you think of them – the obvious things like how the alarm system works but the less obvious like how to reset the boiler if it goes out.  On the last day you will have plenty of other things on your mind but they will appreciate it when they arrive.
  • If you’re really organised, keep all your post for the last couple of months before you move in a big file so you will have to hand the contact details for everyone who needs a change of address card.  A few you might forget:
    • Accountant, banks, solicitor, building society, premium bonds, pension
    • Insurance, house, car and health
    • DVLA
    • Council Tax and car permit people
    • Mobile phone, broadband supplier
    • Doctor, dentist, optician
    • Milkman, newsagent, service contractors for the burglar alarm or white goods
  • Keep a box which should either be loaded on the truck last or travel in your car.  The things to keep in there may be obvious now as I write them but it’s easy to miss something and driving to a supermarket to find loo paper isn’t amusing on moving day.  So, your box should have:
    • Loo paper
    • Cleaning stuff, bleach, gloves, tea towel, hoover
    • Coffee and tea, mugs, milk, sugar, kettle
    • A large number of biscuits, chocolate and snacks
    • Light bulbs just in case the old owners have swiped the lot when they left
    • Torches
    • A small tool kit, Allen keys etc
    • Wine, bottle opener, glasses
    • Bedding, towels and washbag for anyone who will be there the first night
    • Your note book and a pen
  • Do an online shop for the essentials. Try to ensure it arrives once the removal men have left. If you’ve moved your fridge/freezer don’t order frozen stuff as a freezer needs at least 24 hours to settle in!  

What tips would you add? We love making the move as easy as possible so please share your tips and advice

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