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9 Tips to Make Your Move Less Stressful

Moving is stressful. There’s just no way around it. Some things are just par for the course and we have absolutely no control over them (like the ever-shifting closing dates and the never-ending “one more thing” paperwork requirements). But there are steps we can take that will help ensure a less chaotic move, and tips to make your move less stressful.

With my recent moving experience still very fresh in my mind, I feel well-qualified to share some of them in order to help you next time you’re moving. So bookmark this page, and read on.

Here, in no particular order, are my insights…

Moving is tough, and a chore - there's no way around it. From personal experience Candy shares some great tips to make YOUR move less stressful and chaotic.

  1. Take it one room at a time. Focus on just one room and pack AND clean as you go. It’s the perfect time for cleaning along the baseboards and finding out what’s been hiding under your kids’ beds. Taking these measures as you pack will make your final clean-up a whole lot easier. Unless, of course, your rooms are already spit-shined on a regular basis. In which case, I don’t want to talk to you anymore.
  2. Purge as you pack. When you’re packing those boxes, you should also be making piles for give-away and throw-away. And then, and this is important, every time you leave the house you should be taking your give-away stuff to the appropriate place (such as the local mission or the neighbor who’s getting your kid’s hand-me-downs). Having the stuff you don’t need out of the way will go a long way to helping you think more clearly. A good rule of thumb is: If you haven’t used it or thought about it in 6 months, it needs to go. (Thanks, Aimee!)
  3. Make to-do lists each morning. Take note of every accomplishment so that you see your progress. Otherwise, you’ll feel overwhelmed every time you look around and see chaos. I may or may not have written stuff on my list after I’d done it just so I could scratch it off.
  4. Be willing to make concessions. So maybe you don’t normally use paper plates, but if using paper products lets you pack all your plates and glassware then go for it. And maybe you don’t normally let the kids watch 3 hours of TV a day, but if having them out of the way (and still safe) lets you have uninterrupted work time then now’s not the time to be picky.
  5. Keep a calendar. You can use your smart phone or just plain, old-fashioned pen and paper, but you’ll want to make sure you don’t forget to schedule service connections and disconnections or have your mailing address changed.
  6. Put everything (and I mean everything) in a box. Of course, you can’t do this right away, but you should begin working toward that goal the moment you have your moving date so that by the time the moving truck (or your uncle’s trailer) pulls up in the yard, you don’t have any loose items that are left scattered about the house. Don’t ask me how I know this…
  7. Label every box. Be specific. Write the room and the contents on the outside of the box. This is super helpful for finding the band-aids and antibiotic ointment that somebody’s gonna inevitably need. And, don’t be ashamed if you have one or two boxes labeled, “I don’t even know…” ’cause sometimes it’s like that toward the end.
  8. Pack a suitcase for each family member (or, better yet, have them pack their own). Having a suit case packed with enough clothes and personal hygiene items to last a few days can be a lifesaver if you takes longer to unpack than you expected. Which leads me to tip #9…
  9. Expect the unexpected. Please don’t think your move will be without hiccups. Problems will most likely occur. Maybe the line to your well will get cut by yard equipment and you’ll have no (none, nada, zilch) running water the first night you move in. Or the washing machine will break down or maybe the dryer connections won’t be good. Or possibly the dishwasher will get stuck in “lock” mode and not wash your dishes and can only be used as a drying rack. Or you may find that you have little to no cell & internet service making it virtually impossible to run your blog. Or maybe those things only happen to me and you’ll have a smooth as butter, can’t-get-any-better-than-this moving experience.

But I doubt it. 😉

Do you have any tried and true moving tips? If so, please share them in the comments. Somebody somewhere will be so glad you did!


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Candy is a southern girl who enjoys the simple things in life. Dirt road drivin’, Sunday afternoon nappin’, back yard swingin’, and sunset watchin’ are a few of the things that make her smile. She’s been married to her best friend and the love of her life for almost 25 years and is navigating motherhood with her 4 children, aged 23, 19, 14, & 11. Homeschooling for over 18 years now, she is also a bit of a word-nerd (ok, maybe more than a “bit” – she actually considers making lists of homophones to be entertaining), a lover of books and chocolate, a survivor of cancer, an author, and a hula hoop maker.


14 Responses to 9 Tips to Make Your Move Less Stressful

  1. Revan July 17, 2017 at 4:19 am #

    The most thoughtful and helpful tips I’ve found so far. This post is golden and by sharing it you help a lot of people. When I moved the first time I wish I had this article as my guide. This is why I’m bookmarking it now and sharing it on my fb wall. Thanks for existing and being awesome!
    Revan recently posted…Top 5 Packers and Movers in MarathahalliMy Profile

  2. Arish July 17, 2017 at 3:47 am #

    I really hate moving, and hopefully i won’t be needing one… again. But I will take a note for the tips and ideas that I heard form this article post for just in case my situation might change.. Thanks for sharing this by the way.
    Arish recently posted…Top 5 Packers and Movers in MarathahalliMy Profile

  3. Sapana V April 4, 2017 at 11:58 am #

    Wow. These are really nice tips to reduce the stressful shifting. Thanks for sharing.
    Sapana V recently posted…Common Foot Problems in Children and How to Remedy ThemMy Profile

  4. Benny Rowell November 22, 2016 at 1:21 am #

    Precise moving article and I especially agree with the second tip on the list. If I have plans to move I will really purge the items that I don’t need anymore or sell them.
    Benny Rowell recently posted…Things To Do Before Hiring Full Service MoversMy Profile

  5. Brian November 1, 2016 at 9:39 am #

    Great advice! Last time I moved I purged as I packed and I was surprised how much I was able to get rid of. I’ll have to do it again next time I move! Thanks for sharing.

  6. Susan Reeder April 18, 2016 at 10:31 pm #

    Just want to add this. always make sure the read the whole fine print before hiring movers. and check for any weird/unusual rules. some movers have rules or restriction of not moving a specific stuff. so you might end up paying them an additional fee.
    Susan Reeder recently posted…Benefits of Hiring Movers When RelocatingMy Profile

    • Pat April 20, 2016 at 6:12 pm #

      Excellent advice – and from someone who knows ;-)! Thanks for the heads up, Susan!

  7. Sarah Donegan October 20, 2014 at 4:46 pm #

    We are working like crazy people to get our house ready to sell by Nov 1. The house we have been in 11 years. I keep telling myself it will be worth it. Thanks for the tips!

    • Candy October 20, 2014 at 8:06 pm #

      Sarah it will be worth it! Stay strong, sister! I’ll be praying for you. 🙂

  8. Bobbi October 20, 2014 at 3:26 pm #

    I haven’t moved for over 20 years now…sure hope I don’t for 20 more, at least. I can only imagine what you must go through if you move that often ;(

    Thanks so much for linking up to Teach Me Tuesday last week. You are very much appreciated! Can’t wait to see what you have this week. Hope to see you there. Starts tonight at 8pm CST.

    Have an awesome week!

  9. Chris Battaglia October 14, 2014 at 8:47 pm #

    Loved this article Candy. As a military family we have lived in 8 different houses in 15 years. Some moves were professionally done because Mom was incredibly pregnant and could not handle the stress. Those moves went fairly smoothly. Door to door moves are nice. Unfortunately we have been in temporary housing for a month or so before base housing opened up. My favorite move was when we were packing to move to North Carolina and had suitcases packed for a 1-3 day journey. This was not to be as that same week, Ken recieved an unexpected job offer in Albany, Ga and we ended up staying in Albany. Plans radically changed and all the household goods ended up in the youth group building at church. Base housing was no longer an option. We had a job, no house to stay at and the best part a 3 month break before Ken’s new job started. We put all the household stuff in storage and took off for an extended vacation to visit family in Montana. Came back and rented a 1,100 square foot house, where we stayed for a year. When the NC farm sold we were able to move to a dream farm in Dawson. Through it all God had a plan.

    • Candy October 15, 2014 at 5:59 am #

      What a story you have, Chris! I bet you could write an article or two on moving (what TO do and what NOT to do!). 🙂 I’m so very glad y’all stayed in S. Ga. <3

  10. Julie V. (Somebody's Dinner) October 14, 2014 at 6:17 pm #

    Candy, good ideas. I also will write things on my list after I’ve done them just for my sanity 🙂
    I have heard that if you use a company to move your boxes (which I didn’t end up doing) that you shouldn’t label expensive things well. Apparently too often the box that gets “lost” by the moving company is the one with your expensive electronics in it.
    Sad day!

    • Candy October 14, 2014 at 7:03 pm #

      Wow! I never thought about being careful of labeling to guard against unscrupulous movers. (Of course, we’ve never used professional movers.) Thanks so much for sharing that excellent point. 🙂

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