While the end result of living in a new place can be exciting, the process of moving from your old place to your new one isn’t typically considered “fun.” There are a lot of tasks to do, mainly packing and the actual move itself, that most people dread.
However, it doesn’t have to be boring and miserable. There are some creative ways to make moving a lot more fun, whether you’re doing it all alone or with your family. Try these simple tips to make your next move more enjoyable.
How to Make Moving FunPlay music
Music has a way of making any task more bearable, even the ones that are tedious like packing or moving items in and out of rooms. Turn on the radio or play your favorite music on a stereo, television, or even a phone or iPod wherever you’re working. You may even find yourself wanting to dance as you wrap up your dishware. It’s a small thing that can make a big difference in your mood.
Make up games and competitions
If you are packing and moving with your family or friends, you can make things more fun by coming up with some games or competitions. For example, whoever finishes packing their room first gets to choose the restaurant for the evening. Introducing a fun challenge with lift everyone’s spirits and get them more focused on winning the game rather than getting bored with what they are doing.
Decorate some of the boxes
Go to an office supplies or craft store and pick up colorful tape, markers, stickers, and other fun items to personalize a few of the boxes, such as each family member’s essentials box. You can draw on them and have fun making them your own. It will give you a break in the monotony and allow you to express some creativity.
Dress up on moving day
Get everyone matching t-shirts for moving day, wear the same colors, get some funny hats, or even theme your clothes based on your favorite characters or superheroes. The options are endless. Doing something fun with your clothes will add some whimsy to the day and help you all take it a little less seriously.
Plan a celebratory meal
At the end of moving day, have a special meal and dessert planned. Have reservations at your favorite restaurant or order to-go that everyone will love. Then, watch a movie, have a family game night, or plan for something else that you all can look forward to after a long day.
Throw an unpacking party
Get the whole family together or if you live alone, invite some friends over to help you unpack. Order pizza or Chinese food, get some dessert, play music, come up with some games, and make it like a real party as you all tackle the unpacking. Just because it’s a chore doesn’t mean it has to feel like one.
For pet owners, finding a rental can be challenging, particularly with certain pets such as large breed dogs or if you have multiple animals. Some landlords have strict regulations where pets are concerned and may even ban them completely.
Before you choose a rental, it’s vital to discuss their pet policy and make sure the situation is something you and your landlord will be comfortable with.
Here are some tips to help you find the right rental when you have pets.
Tips for Renters with PetsSearch for pet-friendly rentals
Unfortunately, not all landlords make their rentals pet-friendly. It’s important to do your research before choosing a place to find out what their pet policy is. In some cases, they can be flexible. They may say no pets allowed, but if you speak to them directly and prove yourself a responsible pet parent, they may be persuaded.
Your best bet, however, is to look for rentals that already have a pet-friendly policy. Most real estate search engines let you make that selection when searching for properties. You can also check with a real estate agent or go to a local veterinary office or rescue organization to get their recommendations.
If there’s a rental you have your heart set on but the landlord is on the fence about your pets, then one way to instill confidence in them that you are a responsible pet owner is to provide references from your past landlords. Have them write letters vouching that both you and your pet acted responsibly.
Introduce your pet
Your landlord may want to meet your pet to see for themselves how the animal acts. They may be concerned about aggression and other factors, so you can ease their concerns by letting them meet them firsthand to see how your pet acts.
Offer more money or a deposit
Another way to persuade a landlord to permit you to have pets in the rental is by offering an increase in the rent or by putting down a safety deposit in case there are any damages to the property while you are a tenant. This could help sweeten the deal and give them more confidence in the situation.
Check out liability insurance
In some states and scenarios, a landlord can be held responsible should a pet harm someone while living on their property. Therefore, they may request liability insurance to insure your pet. Check with the landlord and with your insurance company to find out the state’s policies.
Ask before adopting
If you are planning to move and are considering getting a pet after you move in, be sure to check with your landlord to find out what their policies are and what steps you will have to take once you adopt the pet. Never try to hide it. If they find out you have a pet, you could put yourself at risk for being evicted or at the very least receiving a bad reputation.
Get it in writing
Always get your landlord’s pet policy in writing. While they may verbally agree to allow you to have pets, they could end up changing their mind and argue that they never allowed it in the first place. Make sure all parts of the agreement are there, including stipulations like a security deposit and other requirements.
When you are renting with pets, always be courteous and responsible to the landlord, as well as other tenants. Clean up after your pet, keep the noise level down, and respect common areas.
Moving is a big change that can come with a lot of benefits. It can improve your financial situation, upgrade your quality of life, and give you a fresh perspective. There are many reasons a move could be a great decision for you.
If you’re thinking about moving but aren’t sure if it’s the right time, here are 7 signs relocating could be exactly what you need.
Signs It’s Time to RelocateSpace is getting cramped
One of the biggest telltale signs that it’s time to think about moving to a new place is when you are bursting at the seams in your current one. Perhaps your family has expanded (such as with a new baby), you’re working from home and need a better home office space, you wish you had an outdoor space, or you’re simply ready to grow into something bigger. These are all good reasons to seek out a larger home to increase your quality of life.
There is too much wasted space
Sometimes, the opposite is true: you have too much space in your current home. This is common with empty nesters after their kids move out and they find themselves with rooms they no longer need. There is no point maintaining and paying to cool/heat square footage you simply aren’t using. Another common scenario is that you upgraded to a larger space a while ago, thinking you wanted a lot of extra room, but then found that you just weren’t using most of it. Downsizing is a great way to simplify your life.
You’re ready for an upgrade
What you desire may not be more space, but an upgrade in quality and/or location. If you’ve experienced an increase in your finances since your last move, with it has come the option to upgrade your lifestyle. You could move into a nicer community with luxury amenities, relocate to a more desirable area of town with a shorter commute to your favorite shops and restaurants, or find a home that has more special features and high-quality finishes.
You’re ready for a change
There is no shame in becoming restless, falling into a rut, and needing a change. It happens to all of us. Maybe you’re sick of your job, can’t find work, or simply feel uninspired where you currently live. Change can be a good thing. Moving could be exactly the thing you need to reinvigorate your life and freshen things up. Whether you relocate to a new area of town, a new city or state, or even a new country, your life could change a lot with that one decision by offering you new job opportunities, relationship opportunities, and other experiences.
You’re sick of the commute
A long drive to and from work can get tiring after a while. There are a lot of other, more satisfying things you could be doing with that time rather than spending it in a car, bus, or train. It’s the same thing if you have to drive a fair distance to get to the shops and restaurants you like to frequent most or to see your family and friends. If this is the case, it’s a good time to consider moving closer to improve your quality of life and have more time to do the things you love doing.
You’ve met someone special
A new relationship is a wonderful thing. However, if you live far away from each other, things could get very inconvenient as your relationship grows. You may want to consider moving closer to that person so that you can foster the relationship. Similarly, you may move in together, but the residences you already have aren’t suited to both of you. Getting a new place that you can choose together and share on an even playing field will help the relationship get off to a strong start.
Finances are tight or you could improve your finances
If your financial situation is a little rocky at the moment, moving into a more affordable place can help ease the burden. It’s one of the best ways to cut down on your monthly expenses. If you own your home, you may have the opportunity to improve your finances even if you aren’t in a dire situation. There may be equity in your home that you can put into the bank or invest elsewhere if you sell your home for a profit.
Moving can be one of the most stressful life events. It’s a big change that requires a lot of planning and work. However, there are ways to significantly lower that stress, such as hiring people to help you pack and move.
Whether you do it all yourself or delegate the tasks, there is still likely to be an element of stress involved mentally and emotionally. That’s why it’s important to look after your self-care during a move. No matter how strong you are, the disruption in your routine can take its toll on you.
Follow these simple self-care tips for moving to stay healthy and stress-free.
Self-Care Tips for MovingStart each day off right
When you’re in the process of moving, it’s easy for your routine to get out of whack. As soon as you wake up, you’ll probably start thinking about your long to-do list and end up jumping into tackling it right off the bat. Instead of going straight to work, take at least thirty minutes to an hour when you first wake up to not think about the move. Have breakfast, drink a cup of coffee, read the paper, and enjoy your morning.
This will get your day off to a strong, healthy start. The rest of the day will go a lot smoother if you don’t start off frazzled but instead begin it with a clear, focused mind.
Plan out your meals
It’s easy to lose track of time when you are moving, both during the process of packing and on moving day itself. Food often ends up being an afterthought, especially if you don’t have time to cook. However, eating fast food every day or worse, skipping meals altogether, isn’t good for you.
Each week, take one day to plan out your food for the week. Decide what you’ll do for each meal, whether it’s takeout, going to a restaurant, or cooking. To save time cooking, prep your food all in one day and put it in labeled containers that you can easily grab when you’re ready to eat. This will ensure that you still get healthy meals even when you’re busy.
Take Epson salt baths
Moving can be very strenuous both physically and mentally. Baths are a great way to de-stress your entire body after a long day. Light some candles, play some music, and read a book while you soak. We recommend adding Epson salt to your bath. It helps relax sore muscles and recover from a long, strenuous day of physical activity. You can find it at any drugstore or superstore.
Block out some downtime
While it can be tempting to go, go, go until the move is over, you risk burning yourself out, which can cause physical injuries and even illness. That’s why it’s crucial that you block out some downtime every day. Make some time for things you enjoy, such as yoga, reading, taking a walk, watching a movie, spending time with friends or family, or going to the spa. Just because you’re moving doesn’t mean you can’t make time to enjoy life in the process.
Follow a schedule and to-do list
Having a schedule and to-do list is crucial to an organized, stress-free move. When you wing it, you leave a lot of room for mistakes and rushing at the end. Taking the time to assign every task to a specific day will remove the worry that you are forgetting something. You won’t feel the need to do it all at once, knowing that it is planned out, and you can actually take time to yourself knowing it is under control.
Some of the most fragile items you’ll have to move are artwork and mirrors. These items can be awkward depending on their size, as well as delicate due to glass and other elements. It’s important to take the proper care and precautions to make sure they make it safely through the journey from one place to the next.
Follow these easy tips for packing artwork and wall hangings to ensure your favorites aren’t damaged during a move.
Packing Tips for Artwork and Wall HangingsUse the right supplies
Keeping your artwork and wall hangings protected starts with the right supplies. First, get appropriately sized boxes. For large pieces, especially mirrors, the optimal choice is a box specially made for wall art in a size and shape that will provide a secure fit. We offer boxes in a variety of sizes, including ones designed for art and mirrors.
If you are packing smaller pieces, like family photos, pack them together with others of similar sizes. For example, pack all small picture frames together in a small box. Fill in gaps with bubble wrap or towels to prevent shifting.
Next, stock up on the proper packing supplies: bubble wrap, packing paper, and packing tape. Your most fragile wall art, especially mirrors, should be wrapped in bubble wrap to ensure its best possible safety for transport. Always use packing paper instead of an alternative like newspaper because the ink can rub off onto your artwork, and always use packing tape instead of duct tape because packing tape is easier to remove and won’t leave behind a residue.
Wrap them carefully
Lay out the packing paper or bubble wrap, then place the artwork face-down on it. The paper should be twice the size of the item you want to pack so that you can wrap it like a present. Make sure the paper or bubble wrap is snug when you wrap it, then wrap the packing tape vertically and horizontally around the item to ensure that the paper won’t move.
All items should be wrapped separately, even small pieces, to make sure nothing rubs together and is secure as possible.
Label it properly
Once it’s packed and ready to go, it’s time to label it. It’s important that your movers and anyone else who will be handling the item know that what’s in it is fragile. Make it very clear by labeling the box with the word “FRAGILE” in a large, clear manner on both sides.
Transport with care
Fragile items, especially artwork, should be placed on the moving truck with care. If you are packing the truck yourself, be sure to place the items on their sides and wedge them between heavy objects to keep them from moving and shifting during transit. However, be careful not to wedge them between something that could bend, pierce or dent the artwork.
Moving to a new community can be an exciting adventure, but it can also drudge up the not-so-exciting feeling of homesickness. If you feel this way after moving, you are not alone. It’s common, especially after long-distance moves.
The good news is that there are some simple remedies that can help you get through the homesick stage of moving. Here are our tips for dealing with homesickness after a move.
Tips for Dealing with Homesickness After MovingGet back to your routine
Moving completely throws your schedule and routine out of whack, so if you are also battling the homesickness of moving to an entirely new community, this can compound your anxiety. It helps to get back into your routine as soon as possible. Go to bed and wake up at the same time as you’re used to, grab your favorite cup of coffee, read the morning paper, take a jog, eat your meals at the same time – whatever you were used to doing before the move, make an effort to get back into that routine to bring some normality and structure back to your life.
Mix the old with the new
In addition to getting back into your routine, it’s also helpful to introduce a few new things to it, as well. Your routine might be slightly off if the new place, so rather than feeling sad about what has had to change, embrace the opportunity to incorporate some fresh things into your daily life. Being proactive and purposely adding new elements to your routine inspired by your new community will help you feel in control, as well as excited.
Get involved in your new community
If you are feeling disconnected after leaving behind a place you loved, don’t waste any time before getting involved in your new community. Dive right in by signing up for local activities and organizations to start getting to know people. This will keep you from feeling lonely and help you feel more at home in your new neighborhood quicker.
Explore your new neighborhood
A brand-new neighborhood can feel daunting at first, but instead of focusing on how unfamiliar it all is, take control and start exploring. Look at it as an adventure. Play tourist at first to see all the main attractions, then start digging deeper to get to know it as a local. Try new restaurants, check out the museums and art galleries, go see a show at the theatre, and check out some local small businesses. There are all kinds of interesting things to discover in a new community.
Find something to be excited about
Instead of focusing on what you’re leaving behind, find something to be excited about after the move. Maybe you’re excited about decorating your new home or the new job you just relocated for. Whatever it is, shift your thoughts to that any time you start feeling sad about what you moved away from.
Keep in touch with friends and family
One of the hardest parts of a long-distance move is leaving behind friends and family. Thankfully, technology has introduced some wonderful ways to easily keep in touch. Video calls, such as through FaceTime and Skype, can offer that immediate, visual connection. You can also try handwritten letters for a more old-school, charming approach that will make you excited to check your mail every day. It may be worth scheduling regular road trips back home, too, to really ease your homesickness and help you ease into the new place.
There are a lot of things to stay on top of when you are moving, but one of the biggest concerns is security. With identity theft on the rise and scams prevalent, it’s more important than ever to do your due diligence and take smart steps to make sure both you and your items remain secure during your move.
Here are some crucial security tips to follow when moving so you can have the peace of mind that everything will go smoothly.
Security Tips for MovingChoose a reputable moving company
To have a safe move, it’s imperative that you’re able to trust the people handling it. Before you settle on a moving company, do your research. Look at reviews, get recommendations, interview potential companies, and make sure they are properly licensed and registered. Doing your due diligence will prevent you from getting scammed, as there are plenty of fake moving companies out there. Always get a contract and look out for any red flags, like unusually large deposit requirements and unmarked trucks.
Inventory your belongings
Creating an inventory of your belongings when you are packing has many benefits, such as making unpacking easier (you’ll know where to find whatever you need without having to dig through multiple boxes first) and knowing if anything has gone missing. Should you lose anything, you’ll be able to pinpoint exactly what box it was in. If you never packed it in the first place and it was lost before the move, you’ll know that, too.
Transfer valuables and personal documents in your vehicle
You should always transfer valuables and sensitive documents in your own vehicle rather than the moving truck. Not only are they safest from damages that way, but you’ll also retain full control over them. It’s better to have the peace of mind knowing these important items are with you at all times.
Designate a secure space
On moving day, designate a secure spot in the new home where you will store your valuables during the move. Make sure no one can see in it from outside and that you can lock it. Since so many people will be coming in and out of your home on moving day, having this secure space will give you the confidence that your most valuable items are safe.
Protect important documents and digital information
Before moving day, shred any sensitive documents you no longer need and secure the rest. It’s also important to make sure passwords for your electronics aren’t easily accessed and the electronics themselves are secure. You never know if a neighbor or someone you’ve hired could get access to your devices while you’re busy and gain control of important information.
Notify important businesses and forward your mail
At least a week or two before moving day, notify important businesses such as banks, credit cards, medical facilities, schools, and your place of work of your new address and moving day so they don’t inadvertently send sensitive documents to your old home after you’ve relocated. Also, set up a forwarding address to catch anything that doesn’t go to the new location in time.
Be aware of payment methods
If a moving company requires cash only, that is another red flag. Any reputable moving company will give you multiple payment options. Opting for a method that has a paper trail, such as a credit card or cashier’s check, gives you extra security because there is evidence of the exchange of money so it cannot be disputed later.
Install your security system ahead of the move
This is especially important if you are not moving into your new home right away but will be bringing some of your items over ahead of time. Get your home security system installed ahead of any belongings being brought over so you’ll know if anyone tries to trespass.
Packing is one of the most tedious parts of moving, especially for kids. Not only does the process seem like a chore, but it can also make them feel unsettled to see their room coming apart. Whether your kids are small or teenaged, a move can have a stressful impact on them.
To help them feel more at ease and to even enjoy the process of packing their room (yes, it’s possible), follow these simple packing tips for kids.
Packing Tips for KidsPrepare them for the move
Moving is a stressful experience for anyone, but kids can take it especially hard since they have no control over what is happening. Ease their stress by keeping them in the loop. Explain why you are moving, what the timeline is, and what they can expect. Also, get them excited by showing them the new home and exploring their new community so they will feel more at home when moving day comes rather than dreading the entire process.
Get fun supplies
For kids, simple things like customizing their moving boxes will make a big difference. Take them to an office supply and craft store to get fun things like stickers, markers, and colorful packing tape. Let them draw on their moving boxes and even personalize their inventory list. Turning the packing process into a creative activity rather than a chore will make your kids much more excited about it.
Help them declutter
Before packing, it’s important to go through their belongings first. Sit down with them and help them go through everything to decide what to keep and what to get rid of. Decluttering will save on supplies and truck space, but be sure to let them know that taking less with them means there will be more room for new stuff, too. This will help them not think of what they get rid of as a loss. Divide everything into three piles: keep, toss, and donate. If you decide to sell some items in a garage sale, let them keep the money so they can go shopping for their new room.
Start planning their new space
Get the dimensions of their new room and create a floor plan, so they can start planning how they will set up their new room. This will help build up their excitement for the new place. Pick out paint colors, plan some fun DIY projects, and plan to take before and after pictures so they can share the big transformation with their friends.
Put together an essentials box
Every member of the family should have their own essentials box, which is packed with items they will want the first night in the new home. This can include comfort items such as a teddy bear or blanket, something to keep them entertained, prescriptions, toiletries, a change of clothes, etc. Label it clearly and if you have room, transfer it in your own vehicle so there is easy to access to what’s inside.
Make it as enjoyable as possible
While packing isn’t generally considered “fun,” it can be made a more enjoyable experience with the right attitude and some creativity. Play music, decorate the boxes, make a game of the process, offer to go to your child’s favorite restaurant once their room is packed – anything to make the process of packing and moving a better experience. Not only will your kids appreciate it, but you’ll enjoy it more, too.
When you are moving, sometimes it is not as simple as packing up your home and going straight to the next place. You may want to pack up a lot of your stuff while your home is on the market to make it more appealing to buyers, or your new home may not be ready by the time you leave the old one.
Whatever the case may be, this can require the need for a place to store your belongings for a short period of time. There are a lot of options for storage, so it’s a good idea to go through the pros and cons of each and decide which one will be the best fit for you.
Here are 5 storage solutions to consider when you are moving.
Storage Solutions for MovingStorage unit
Self-storage, or a storage unit, is one of the most popular options for storing your items when moving. Depending on the facility you choose, it is generally quite affordable, convenient, and secure. The flexibility of being able to access your unit whenever you’d like to is a big asset, too, in case you need to grab anything from it at an odd hour.
A storage pod is a container that is delivered to your home which you can conveniently fill it up right on your property. You then have the option to leave it there (which is unsightly if you are trying to sell your home in the process) or have it moved to the company’s facility and then to your new home once you’re ready.
Peer-to-peer storage is a relatively new concept, but it can be very advantageous in terms of budget and flexibility. It’s like Airbnb; you visit one of the websites that offer the service and search for homeowners in your area willing to rent out empty space in their home, such as a garage or basement. You can negotiate terms based on your needs, making it a very flexible option.
If you don’t want to lift a finger, concierge storage is perfect for you. A company comes to your home, packs up your belongings, inventories everything, and takes it back to their storage facility. Once your new home is ready, they will deliver it to your new address and unpack it for you. While this is definitely the most convenient option, it’s also the least budget-friendly and least flexible, as you can’t pop by the facility whenever you want if you ever need anything from the unit.
Friend or family member’s home
Of course, the most budget-friendly option of them all is to store your items at a kind friend or family member’s home. Ask around and see if anyone has any empty space they would be willing to loan to you while you are in the process of moving.
Many people look at a new year as a chance to bring positive changes to their lives. If you’ve just moved into a new home or plan to move around the start of a new year, it’s the perfect opportunity to get rid of old habits by setting up your new home for success.
Here are some tips for changing your life in a new home by preparing it in a way that will support your goals and make your daily life better.
Tips for Changing Your Life in a New HomeSet yourself up for success
If you’ve always wished you had a more organized home, moving into a new place is the perfect time to make it happen. Instead of waiting until after you’re settled in to get organized, start putting organizational processes into effect from the start. If you wait, you’re likely to get caught up in daily life all over again and never get around to it.
Invest in organizational tools like removable shelves for cabinets, dividers, baskets, boxes, files, etc. Get each room set up for success, so all you have to do is keep it maintained. You’ll be so glad you did.
Get ahead of old habits
The first step to improving anything is to identify what hasn’t been successful. If you want to live clutter-free, spend less time cleaning, cook more, have a great space to entertain, or even get up earlier, you must set your environment up for success.
Get ahead of old habits by designing your new home around better habits. Identify what traps you always fell into, such as a disorganized kitchen keeping you from wanting to cook in it or a bad furniture layout making it hard to entertain people in your home. When you figure out what was holding you back in your last home, you can avoid those pitfalls in your new one and set up a place where you will flourish.
Embrace the fresh start
Look at moving to a new place as an opportunity for a fresh start. Rather than focusing on all the stress and effort, it will take to get settled in, think about the clean slate you now have. What do you want your daily life to look like in your new home? What things can you change from the last one that will help you accomplish that daily life and make it easier?
Purge what you no longer want or need, organize each space so everything has a purpose, and set up your home around your goals and desires.