Packing up your entire life into a series of cardboard boxes can be stressful, physically taxing, and more to the point: time-consuming. It takes weeks to complete this process (significantly less if you are using moving services such as professional packers) and then moving day finally arrives, and everything goes onto the truck.
But you’re not done, are you? No, it turns out that weeks of boxing up belongings are followed by just as many weeks, if not more, of un-boxing. It’s not surprising at all that many people simply run out of steam at this stage, and allow the unpacking process to linger for far longer than it needs to. Personally, it is my favorite process of the move – finding a new home for everything in our new home!
However, you don’t have to live in chaos. By following these four suggestions, you can streamline and prioritize unpacking and organization, and turn your new house into a home quickly.
Don’t Put it Off
This advice may seem pretty obvious, but in reality it may be the most difficult bit to follow. After all the runaround of leaving your old place is over, it’s perfectly understandable that you will want to take some time to catch your breath, and quite honestly put your feet up. You are allowed to do this, absolutely.
The problem is that somewhere along the way we realize we are getting along well enough with the few things we have unpacked, and the temptation to leave everything else boxed up is pretty high.
Don’t give in. Eventually, you are going to need something in one of those boxes. Give yourself a goal of unpacking two or three boxes every day. Set reminders on your phone if you have to, and give yourself rewards for following through. You can’t get unpacked and organized without, well, unpacking.
When Packing, Label Priority Boxes as Such. Start There
Your best approach to packing is to begin with the things that you don’t need to access every day like seasonal items, etc. When you are down to the wire, you will pack up the things you need to interact with every day. Come up with some sort of labeling system – even writing something as simple as “important” on the box – to prioritize those items for immediate unpacking.
As an added bonus, this helps you get a feel for where you want these everyday items to go, and there won’t be any other “stuff” blocking the way.
Focus on Necessities First, Decor Second
When unpacking, it is so easy to get distracted by something like framed photos or refrigerator magnets. Decorating and personalizing your space is fun, but you shouldn’t be stressing too much about wall hangings before you have your silverware squared away.
Again, this is the type of issue that can be tackled by clearly labeling each box. Too many people assume that they will remember which boxes held what items, but whether you are looking at long distance moving, or merely hopping across town, you are going to forget. Stick to those labels.
Have Your Layout Set in Advance
If you are moving to a home with more rooms than you previously had, it can be easy to declare those extra rooms as just that – extra. However, that can lead to some issues with unpacking. Wherever possible, designate each room for its ultimate purpose. This way, you can label boxes with their intended room, and as the movers bring items off the truck and into your home, they can place them properly.
As you can see from this list, a lot of the organization that will happen after your move hinges on organization before your move. Remember the importance of labeling boxes – not only with their intended destination room, but also marking whether or not they contain priority items. You deserve to live in a comfortable and well-organized home. By making unpacking a priority, you can reach that goal much sooner. Good luck with your move, and enjoy your new home!