How to Organize Your Move | Moving 101 | Long Distance USA Movers

How to Organize Your Move – Step-by-Step Guide for Efficient Moving

Handling everything related to relocation is no easy task. But, when you know how to organize your move, it sure can run smoothly and effortlessly, with minimum stress. Planning every step of the way will make it easier for you, as well as the relocation specialists you’ve hired to move you.

Making a list for long-distance moving
Almost 3 million people in the US move each year, so there are a lot of relocating tips out there

Relocation is one of the most significant changes in one’s life, and it affects everyone and everything around us, our daily life, and our family. To venture through organizing for a move without breaking a sweat, physically and mentally, you’ll want to stay on top of things. And, since not all of us are born with top-notch organizing skills, you might require a helping hand in the form of a guide.

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As the Move-Out Day Comes Closer, Being Well Organized Is Essential

Whether it’s your first relocation, or you’ve already gone through relocation or two, and you have an idea how to move efficiently, there’s a big chance that you want to sit down and think every step of the way to your new place. No matter how many times you may have relocated, you’ve probably missed something important, and it made you slow down and stress out. By following our step-by-step guide, you can get through everything like a pro, even if you’re moving with pets.

Preparations for cross-country moving
Nearly 10% of Americans move each year, and most of them realize that it’s essential to stay organized during the process

How to Organize Your Move? Step 1 – Start Packing Early

If you are wondering “how do I begin to organize,” whether you are relocating from a small town to a big city or not, one of the obvious steps in planning how to organize for a move is to start on schedule. And that means several months ahead, as it’s better not to wait for the last week before relocating, or you’ll be stuck in chaos, and if you’re moving for a job, you would want to keep a clear head.

First Thing’s First – Get These Items Out of the Way

That one thing you can do a couple of months upfront is to get into your closets and sort all of the off-season clothes. You can do the same with the books you’ve already read. Think about all of the other belongings that fit into the description “not using right now”. Perhaps a lot of shoes can be packed ahead, too.

Take Proper Care of Decorations and Artwork

When it comes to art and any other decorations you have in your household, one of the best tips is to package them early, too. It’s not just because these are not items that you use every day, although your house will look a bit empty without them. The artwork is tricky to protect and store appropriately because you’re packing fragile items and valuable ones. Give yourself a few weeks ahead to buy all the necessary packing materials essential to protect your decorations.

A woman wrapping plates
Although glass can be endlessly recycled without losing purity, ensure everything arrives without breaking

Step 2 – How Do You Declutter and Organize a Move?

Everyone has items and unwanted appliances they don’t actually require or use anymore, so the next logical step is to declutter and get rid of all those things instead of putting them in a storage unit and likely forgetting about them. There are several ways you can do this step, and it would be best, to begin with throwing away anything that should have hit the trash bin a long time ago.

Donate old appliances and anything else you don’t require but is still usable. You can donate them to a charity like The Salvation Army. And remember that you can also sell your stuff, like those pieces of furniture you won’t be taking with you to your new place. Maybe this step can add up in saving when you’re wondering how much I should save to move out of state. More tips about decluttering and packing are in the following video.

Step 3 – A Friend in Need Is a Friend Indeed, Especially When Relocating

Packing everything by yourself is no easy task. If you didn’t plan on using packing services.” and you find the quantity of your household stuff overwhelming, think about calling your friends and family to lend a helping hand. This is an early step, too, as it’s always good to ask and let people know a couple of weeks before they’re going to be helping a friend move, or even better – a month, so they can prepare and get organized themselves. Let them know when you expect them, and even suggest what clothes they should wear, so everyone is on the same page.

Step 4 – Feel Like a Master Organizer – Get a Binder

Getting a binder will aid you in keeping everything in place and get rid of that anxiety about relocating to another state. It must contain reminders with contact information of utility companies, your cross-country relocation professionals, receipts, contracts, and everything related to your relocation, even the relocation expenses checklist. It’s easy to keep track of everything this way while holding everything relocation-related in one place if you create a relocating binder for your next move.

A pile of colorful binders
The first ring binder was invented in the nineteenth century in Germany, and it’s still extremely helpful for staying organized

Essential Step 5 – Create a Relocation Checklist

A step further in your preparations and a big helping hand is a checklist for long-distance relocating, where you will list and keep track of literally everything from this step-by-step guide. This is a period of one’s life where you have to juggle multiple tasks, and it’s relatively easy to let something important slip your mind. But, if you print a checklist for your relocation or create one by yourself, you can even add reminders and side notes and keep them all in check.

Step 6 – Relocating Out of a Rented Apartment? Here’s What You’re Required to Do

If you’re a renter, take a look at your lease agreement. It usually contains all of the tasks you have to complete before leaving your rented house or an apartment, so add them to your checklist. Check the property from the top to the bottom to detect any damage. See what you can repair and what should be deducted from your deposit. Also, notify your landlord that you’re planning to move and on which date.

Apartment keys on a checklist
Did you know that around 1/4 of all apartment residents are younger than 30?

Step 7 – Time to Hire a Long Distance Moving Company

With all the early preparations out of the way, the next step is to find a reputable company and invest in long-distance moving services. Before Googling “long distance movers near me” and taking a pick, remember to get referrals and research them online. Also, compare quotes from several different companies to get a good feel on the prices. Once you make up your mind, give them a call. When they arrive at your house to take a look at your belongings and give you an estimate, that’s a huge step forward to the actual relocation date.

Picking the Perfect Date to Move Out of the House Is Vital for the Budget

It’s not a bad idea to think about which day to move is the right one. This is a perfect opportunity to save up a little more. Most people will choose weekends for their relocation days, so the long-distance movers will be busier and harder to book on these days. Talk to your boss and see if your work schedule allows you to take a midweek day off. Relocating on weekdays between cities and states costs less, and if you have kids, you’ll have more freedom to run everything during school classes.

A cross country moving company crew
About half of relocations in the US occur between the start of May and Labor Day

Step 8 – Don’t Forget the Utility Companies

Taking care of the utilities and other services is something many of us postpone until it’s too late. Just imagine the horror of arriving into the future home without running water, electricity, or worse – internet, and getting on the waiting list that could take forever. To avoid it, make a call on time.

Contact your utility companies and service providers at least a week before leaving your home, so you can figure out when you are required to shut everything off. Also, keep in mind if you have to gather any items to return, such as router and remotes, for your cable provider. Keep in mind that you should have both electricity and water on the move-out date because the movers will arrive, and you’ll have some cleaning to do afterward.

Step 9 – Prepare a Detailed Household Inventory List

Creating an inventory list containing all of your household items is essential in more than one way because it’s a great way to avoid making any relocating mistakes. And, it’s a must-have so you can keep track of all your belongings while they are transported by professional movers and unloaded in your future home. Also, if anything gets lost or damaged in transport, you can claim insurance based on your home inventory.

A man writing down inventory for long-distance moving services
A typical household move includes around 6,500 pounds of goods

Step 10 – Packing Supplies Are Elementary

The things you simply can not start packaging without are the packing supplies. Besides basic supplies, remember that you should visit a hardware store and buy some more light bulbs, extension cords, and power strips, as you may require them. Here’s what you need:

  • Packing tape,
  • Cardboard boxes,
  • Plastic crates (more sturdy and resistant to moist)
  • Bubble wrap, packaging paper, and foam peanuts,
  • Furniture blankets.

If you do think this is a lot of work for you, ask your cross-country movers for any packing services they have to offer. You may also require special boxes for more fragile items, so look them up in the boxes and packing supplies section with your movers.

Search Your Local Stores for Supplies

There are ways to find cheap relocating supplies or even free boxes. The good idea is to go to a local liquor store and ask for cardboard ones, which you can also get at a bookstore. They should be only used for carrying lightweight items, such as towels. One of those hacks that could be of great help is to visit these stores at the beginning of the week, right after everyone is through with their weekend relocation.

A pile of cardboard packages
The plain cardboard packagings are still the most eco-friendly solution out there

Go Through Each Room of the House in Step 11

To make it easy on yourself, you have to have the unpacking process in mind while organizing and packaging everything around your home. To do this, make sure all of the belongings from one room are packed and stored together as the best way to pack. Just remember to put heavier items in smaller packages, so they would be easier to lift. Disassemble every furniture piece that is too large, pack the smaller hardware parts into ziplock bags, and tape them to the furniture. Screws, hooks, and other small hardware are usually the most commonly forgotten things to pack.

How to Organize Boxes for a Move? – The Color Coding System Is an Ultimate Hack

Once you’ve gone through the rooms and have done away with packaging, the next step will help your hired movers, as well as you, in the unloading and unpacking process. This step is fun, besides being helpful. You’ll need packing tape in different colors or stickers, and then assign a color to each room (for example, the kitchen could be blue.) Label the doors to rooms in your new place with the corresponding color. When the movers arrive at your place, they’ll have a clue exactly where each package goes.

Or You and Your Family Could Number the Packages

If you’re up for it, numbering each box is also an excellent way to track the packages. Assign a number to each box, and then have a family member write a list of what items it holds. This is pretty useful to check if any of them had gone missing.

Watch the following video to guide you, whichever method you choose.

Step 12 – Pack an Essentials Box

While packaging everything, one of the most excellent tips on how to organize moving is that you should put aside a box or two to store away essential items. Cleaning supplies, bathroom necessities, and basic items needed to prepare a small meal are among the first apartment essentials if this is your first relocating experience. Label such packages so you don’t have to go through all the others just to find what you require on your first night. It’s probably wise to bring these essential packages with you in your car. Or a plane, in case you opted for hiring an auto transport service.

A bag ready for cross-country moving services
Mixed nuts and fruits are a perfect snack that should be placed in the essentials bag because they are nutrient-rich

Now You Know How to Organize a Move

If you’ve followed up on all of these steps, you should feel a sense of accomplishment by the end of the whole process. Everything or almost everything should have gone smoothly, and the next step is to think about unpacking and settling at your new place. But, you should also give yourself some time off after a job well done and enjoy the next chapter in your life.

Kate Holland

A true grunge and rock music fan born in Seattle, Kate has moved across the country and started writing about her experience.


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