Family and home

The painless guide to planning your next move

monogrammed_home_moving_announcement_postcard-r64238855a4284c7cb01ac34312d88d55_vgbaq_8byvr_324About a month or so ago, I moved from my cozy apartment to a much bigger townhouse. The move was a fairly big success as far as organizing went. Here are just a few things that made my move much better than it has been in the past:

Initial process

  1. Write down what you want in a home in a spreadsheet. My spreadsheet included columns such as: monthly cost, deposit, water included, rooms, fireplace, balcony, etc.
  2. Do house research: use Google maps to spot out areas your would like to live. Once you find those places, add them to your spreadsheet, and also to Google’s custom map site. Google maps will provide you an easy to print map for later on when you go and view the houses. Additionally, search the web for pictures of the house, and video walkthroughs such as this one.
  3. Do community research: check the National Sex Offender Registry and add any counts to your spreadsheet, peruse community sites such as http://www.meettheneighbors.org/ and www.city-data.com that have real people that will live in your community.
  4. Check your surroundings: review locations of grocery stores, restaurants, and attractions near you using Google maps or Google Earth.

Pre-move & moving day

  1. Organize paper items into a physical notebook: create a binder that contains all of the papers you need for your move, and important papers that you don’t want to get lost in the shuffle. Use a label-maker or print out labels to make things easier to find.
  2. Create a digital notebook: after you’ve organized your paper items, scan them for even more safe keeping. Don’t store personal information or financial information online. For those things, store them on a removable hard drive or flash drive that can be encrypted, and password protected. For non-personal information, store the information in a place such as Dropbox or Google Drive.
  3. Make a move calendar that gives you plenty of time for packing and cleaning. Make sure to give yourself time off, and enough time to move things around if something comes up. Making it a digital calendar gives you the option of receiving alerts as needed.
  4. Create a home inventory with a spreadsheet and camera. This can help you if something gets lost, broken, or stolen.
  5. Create (or buy) labels for boxes. Use a color coding system for where you want the box to go in your new house. For example, use red labels for boxes that should go in the kitchen, green for boxes that should go in the garage, etc.
  6. Take a picture or make a rough list of the items in the box and tape it to the box. Haven’t yet unpacked and don’t know where your iron is? This makes it easy to find, and easy to prioritize what needs to be unpacked first.
  7. Find a place to donate or sell gently used items – Craigslist, Ebay, and Amazon are great places to sell your unwanted items. Have lots of books or movies? Drop them off at your local library.
  8. Create a list of items that must go last, and be opened first. A digital list allows you to share with others, and have with you in both places. Don’t forget to add toilet paper, towels, and toothpaste!
  9. Go online to update your mailing address so that you can start receiving your mail as soon as you get to your new house.

Last few items

  1. Go online to update your address wherever you can. This includes banking, Amazon, Ebay, credit cards, and Paypal.
  2. Create and send out a just moved postcard or e-postcard.

Now you just have to pack! Good luck Smile.