Whether this is your first serious move or you’re an old-pro at it, there are ways to reduce the stress and hassle of moving from one home to another.  Most people know they are going to relocate well in advance, so don’t leave everything to the last minute.  Decide the moment you know you are moving to plan, pack and even downsize the stuff you no longer want.  Check out our top week-by-week tips to simplify your move.

Six Weeks Before Your Move

If you plan on hiring a moving company, now is a good time to look for one that fits your requirements and can be there on your requested date.  Book ahead to be sure to reserve the date and time of your move.  If you are relying on friends and family, ask them now, but be sure to remind them as you approach your actual moving day.

Six weeks before the big day is also a good time to start your organization.  Grab a three-ring binder or large folders to keep all your move-related paperwork, to-do lists, contracts, receipts, checklists and important phone numbers and be sure to put it in a safe and convenient location.

Five Weeks Before Your Move

If you have any valuables, now is the time to get them appraised in case they get lost or damaged in the transition.  Take pictures or videotape, then upload them onto your computer or a CD.  Be sure to store it in a safe place.  This is also the time to organize your belongings and decide what you are going to sell, donate and take-along.

Four Weeks Before Your Move

Stocking up on supplies is best to do ahead so you don’t run out and are left searching for them at the last minute.  This includes boxes, tape, markers, bubble wrap, plastic wrap for furniture, labels etc.  Going to places like bookstores or retail outlets is a great place to find sturdy boxes with built-in handles that can then be recycled later.

tips for a simple moveThree Weeks Before Your Move

This is the time to start packing up the items that are not essential to your everyday living.  This includes the contents of your attic, garage or basement.  You can also pack up out-of-season clothing, Christmas decorations, china etc.  Be sure to number the boxes and list them on your master check-list for quick reference.

Another great way to be organized is to assign each room of your home with a color-coded sticker.  This is a simple way to let your movers know which room each piece of furniture and boxes go into.  This saves a lot of time and hassle when unpacking.

Week three is also the time when you can notify the utilities company to disconnect your service the day after you leave your old home and reconnect the day before you are at your new location.

Two Weeks Before Your Move

Two weeks before your big move continue packing, but stay organized.  Pack your sports equipment, formal diningware etc.  This is also a good time to change your address, update your magazine subscriptions and your local newspaper.  Also be sure to notify your bank and credit card companies of your change-of-address so there will be no delays that could result in  unwanted late payment fees.

One Week Before Your Move

It’s coming down to crunch time so it’s time to pack up everything except the necessities.  This is a great time to make a last-out, first-in box.  This box includes toiletries, bedding, cleaning supplies, coffeepot etc.  This box is best taken with you inside of the car.

Moving Day

Moving day is the last time you can do a check-through of your old home.  Take it  room-by-room and make sure nothing has been missed or left behind.  This is also the day to test all your faucets, fixtures, water heater and security alarms (if necessary) in your new location.  Once everything is in your new home, then begin to unpack and settle in.

Following these simple tips to get you and your family prepared well before your actual moving day will save a lot of time and hassle down the road.  Plan now to be organized.