Everyone’s moving strategy is different. Some meticulously plan and sort their items into categories and boxes. Others just want to get it over with already and shove things in whatever box they can reach. Some love to find a place for everything as they unpack it. Some unpack only what they need when they need it. Others turn boxes upside down and dump everything where it lays, sure that it will all find its place… sometime.
No matter which side of the fence you’re on, there are strategies to help you arrive in your new home smoothly. With a few easy steps, you can make sure you can get to your home and make it feel like Home swiftly. In this article, we’ll help you tackle your packing so you can unpack quickly, without stress.
You Have to Pack to Unpack
Your unpacking strategy starts long before the moment arrives. How you choose to pack your boxes will make a huge difference to how you unpack them. There are a few things to keep in mind when you begin packing your home:
Keep Inventory and Use Labels
You don’t need to itemize your entire house, but keeping track of what you have will be a huge help. This includes sorting what you have by room and item type. As you pack, use clear labels on each box you close. Make sure you put labels on the side and top of your boxes so you can easily read them no matter their orientation.
It’s great to know which room your box will go in, but when you can, use more specific indicators. BEDROOM CLOSET – CLOTHES will help as you’ll know they’re not only clothing items but ones that will be hung. This will also help your movers to deliver the boxes to the space where they belong.
Separate Your Boxes by Room
It may be tempting to fill that remaining space in your home office box with some bits and pieces from the living room, but do yourself a favor and don’t. Keeping your boxes separated by room will help you approach your moving and unpacking in an orderly way.
Pack a Box for Your First Night
Don’t end your day by tearing open boxes looking for your pillows, sheets, and towels. Pack a box for bedtime, with all of your pillows and bed and bathroom linens in one place. Trust us, at the end of the movie, when you want to shower and sleep you just want to do it. Make it easy on yourself.
Pack an Essentials Box
More than just linens, you’ll need a few other things to get you through the first 24-48 hours in your new home. Medication, toiletries, a change of clothes, toilet paper, and phone chargers will all be essential to arriving smoothly. You can also include a couple of cups, plates, cutlery, and coffee so that you can be ready for breakfast on your first morning in the new place.
Sort Your Rooms
Once you’ve arrived, make sure all of the boxes have made it to the right place. Hopefully, your moving strategy included putting boxes in their designated rooms on arrival. Nonetheless, sometimes things get misplaced. Take a walk-through and look to see that everything is in the right place. If anything has gone rogue, shuffle it to where it belongs.
Chances are, you don’t have many bathroom boxes. For many of us, bathroom supplies are daily necessities, so it’s good to unpack these first. You don’t need to fold every spare towel and place it in the linen closet. You can set these aside and organize them later in the process. For now, just get your bathroom supplies and essentials in the right place.
Once you have your bathroom space set up, it’s time to move to the bedroom. After all, you’ll want a nice relaxing space to retire to no matter where you are in the overall unpacking process.
Start with arranging your furniture and larger items. Assemble your furniture, dust off your dressers, and get your nightstands set. Find your box with your bed linens and make your bed. This way, even if everything else is still in process, you still have a place to have a good night’s sleep.
Bedrooms can often have many boxes and things that are not immediately necessary. Unpack your clothes, but start with hanging items you’ll use regularly or that need to be hung sooner than later. Place whatever you need on and in your nightstands. Unpack socks, underwear, and other crucial things into your dresser drawers. The rest of the clothes can come out later in the day after you take care of a few other rooms.
No one likes unpacking the kitchen. It can feel tedious and cumbersome to unpack so many things like pots and pans, dishes and silverware, and small appliances. Don’t avoid it just because it feels like a lot.
Start by coming up with a plan. Decide where you’d like everything before you even cut the tape on the boxes. If it helps put a post-it note on the cabinets where you’d like certain things. This will help you keep track of space as you start filling them up.
Living Room Fourth
By now, you’re nearly finished! You have all of the most detailed – and crucial – rooms done, so the end is in sight.
Take a deep breath here, and remind yourself not to get distracted. The living room can often cause you to be tempted into less-work-more-play with all of the bits of entertainment you’re likely to unpack. Sure, you’ll need to turn on the television or stereo to make sure they are set up properly, but you don’t need to binge a series on Netflix in order to do that.
If you think the temptation may be too great, save this room for last. If you think you can hold your own in the entertainment zone, get going.
Extra Rooms Fifth
Depending on your family, lifestyle, and home space, you may have extra rooms on the list. This includes guest bedrooms, a home office, and other rooms not used daily.
For your home office, start with the big items first and move to the smaller ones. Get your furniture oriented how you want it and set up the electronics before you move on to some of the other practical and aesthetic things. Get your desk space set up first before moving on to the surroundings.
When it comes to your guest bedroom you’re already a pro. Start with furniture, then make the bed, then move to the rest. Is your guest bedroom closet functioning as extra space for your clothes? Make sure those boxes are there, along with many things that may be stored long-term in this spare space.
Excess Items Sixth
Now you are left with boxes of extra “stuff” – though hopefully you did a good run of downsizing before moving and found alternative places for these things. This is the step where you fill your linen closet, slide boxes into the crawl space, and stack things neatly into the garage.
Decorate… And You’re Done!
Now is the moment when the practicalities are taken care of and you can move to the beautification of your new home. Hang your artwork, set up those potted plants, and place pictures where you’d like to see them. This step is the moment when you’ll really see that you’re now, finally, Home.