Moving, as we’ve seen, is a stressful time even when almost everything goes well. Of course, moving is stressful because everything usually doesn’t go so well. That’s why, at the very least, you need to do a few things to learn how to make a move less stressful. That way, even if a few small things go south, as they say, your move will still be as stress-free as possible.
Create a Budget to Avoid Money Stresses
Not knowing what you’re going to spend before you move can be risky. Frankly, moving costs can add up quickly, and not just for the moving company. You might have to, for example, ship your car across the country, which is expensive. If you pack yourself, you’ll need supplies like packing paper, boxes, and tape. (Wardrobe and dish-pak boxes can be pricey!) In short, it pays (pun intended!) to make a budget ahead of time and, of course, do your best to stick to it.
How to Make a Move Less Stressful: Moving Companies
If you plan to have a moving company handle your move, you need to start getting moving estimates ASAP. That’s especially true in the summer when children are out of school, and more Americans are moving. Experts recommend having moving salespeople come to your home to give an estimate, not over the phone. (It’s not accurate enough, which could be a big, expensive problem when the movers deliver.) Why 3 or 4? Because 2 is too few and more than 4 is a waste of your time and theirs. Plus, it can get awfully confusing.
Make a Moving To-Do List (Or Several if You Need To)
There are a lot of things to do when you move, to say the least. Changing schools, jobs, and homes are just the start. You need to change banks, cancel home utilities, set up new utilities, and so much more. That’s why making a to-do list is vital. That way, you’ll know what needs to be done before moving day arrives. More importantly, you’ll be able to check things off as you go. (It’s a very satisfying feeling.)
How to Make a Move Less Stressful: Start Early
There’s nothing worse than trying to get everything done before moving day in a few short days. (Sure, you can do it, but your stress levels will go through the roof!) That’s why it makes a lot of sense to start as early as possible. That way, you’ll have plenty of time to get all of those tasks done well before moving day. Experts suggest beginning 6 to 8 weeks before your scheduled moving date. The more time you give yourself to get everything done, the less stress you’ll have.
How to Make a Move Less Stressful: Stay Organized
Moving is, in a word, chaotic. There’s so much going on! Your things aren’t in their usual place and, because of that, they can often get lost. (Where are the darn keys?!) That’s why it helps to stay as organized as possible. Here are a few tips:
- Put all vital paperwork in one place and one container.
- Finish one moving task before starting another.
- Use one room (or a closet) to store everything that’s boxed up and ready to move.
- Start putting things you’ll take with you in your suitcase, even if it’s weeks until moving day.
- Have several lists of the things, people, and tasks you need to handle before the big day.
- Keep tape, a knife or scissors, and a magic marker in a small container, and take it with you as you pack.
Find and Rent a Storage Unit to Avoid Moving Stress
One of the most stressful facts about moving is that the closing on a new home will occasionally fall through. If that happens, the moving company won’t be able to deliver your things. That’s very problematic because they likely have other customers that need to move after you. Yes, they can put it in their storage, but that’s a costly proposition. That’s why we recommend finding a storage unit and renting one before you arrive. That way, if anything goes wrong, your storage unit will be ready. Even if the closing goes as scheduled, a storage unit can be helpful, especially if you have tons of stuff.
Last but not least, stay positive! Moving is a pain, it’s true, but it will all be over soon, and you’ll be in your new home! Months and years from now, you’ll look back on your move and have a good chuckle. (If you follow our tips and advice, that is.) Wherever you’re moving, we wish you the very best of luck and joy in your new home!
This post was written on June 20, 2018. It was updated on March 10, 2021.