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Moving Tips - Before, During, and After

Moving day can be a daunting and stressful experience, but with proper planning and organization, you can make it a smooth and hassle-free process. Whether you're moving to a new city or just down the street, here are some tips and tricks to help you make moving day easy.



Before you get all packed up


  • Declutter before you start. If you’re thinking way ahead, you can look at selling things but if you are already looking at packing up boxes, throw out anything you don’t use and don’t want to have to unpack. 

  • Purchase new or collect used professional moving boxes as much as possible. Although I admit to having many moves in my younger years with free boxes from wherever I could find them, having the same three sizes and easy-to-see markings makes them much easier to stack, move, and unpack in a methodical way.

  • Prepack as much as you can.  This includes basement storage, sports equipment, and all seasonal décor if possible.  By using the same sized boxes, this will be much easier to plan, build, or buy shelving in the new space.  Purchasing plastic bins can have a lot of benefits, but if you prefer the clear ones, know that they will not stand up well to being stacked indefinitely.

  • Pack a suitcase – clothes are “easy” to pack but for that last week before the move, put together a week’s worth of clothes for each member of the home and only 1-2 pairs of shoes each.

  • Meal Preparation – similarly, kitchens constitute the largest part of packing a house due to the sheer volume and the fact that things are often used right up to the last minute.  By careful planning of some quick and easy meals, you can reduce that amount to a few groceries, a couple of pans, only a few spices, and use up some of the freezer items that are challenging to pack anyways.  Some people even swear by a package of paper dishes to relieve pressure for that last day as well as the first ones at the new house.

This blog article by Lighter Side Interiors has posted a great list of all that easy stuff to declutter in advance as well as a warning of where not to get bogged down! declutter-before-you-move

During your Packing Stage and Moving Day


  • Pack up one room at a timeDon’t tape the boxes shut until the room is completely packed or they are 100% full. This way you can add to them easily if you find more of something that you've already packed, rather than having it in separate boxes.

  • Label your boxes with a Sharpie on the TOP AND SIDES with the room that you want them located in at the new place.  (When you are carrying a box, where can you read?  When you are looking at a pile of boxes, where can you read?) On the side of each, write 2-3 of the more important things inside.  By packing similar things together you will keep this “list” short.  Ask the movers to stack boxes with this documentation visible.  (Keep in mind that these nice people, whether paid help or volunteers, are doing this heavy work as best as they can, be gracious 😉)

  • Pack an Essentials Box.  In the same way that you packed up essential clothing in your suitcase, consider a box that contains items you’ll need immediately upon arriving at your new home.  This can include things like toiletries, TV remote, telephone, necessary medications, and important documents. Having this box easily accessible will help you settle in more comfortably.

  • Do a load of laundry the day before the move.  Firstly, you will be running short from what is left in your suitcase and secondly, this is not a job you want to tackle in the first few days at your new place.

  • Stay hydrated and take breaks.  Moving day can be physically demanding, so remember to provide snacks and water for yourself and your helpers to stay hydrated.  Don’t forget to take breaks as needed. It's crucial to pace yourself to prevent exhaustion or injuries.

  • Plan for pets and children.  If you have pets or children, plan for their care on moving day. Arrange for a friend or family member to watch them to ensure their safety and comfort during the move.


After the Big Day - Unpacking


  • Ask for help.  Ask a friend or a professional to assist you, at least with the beast that is your kitchen and pantry.

  • Put away “like with like”.  Try to locate items as close as possible to the area where you will be using them. If you don’t have enough room for them all to be kept in the same space, (let’s use  water bottles as an example) evaluate:

    • Do you have too many?

    • Which are the ones your family actually uses most often?

    • Would they be easy to access from a different location, or would somewhere else be really inefficient? This can include hacks like utilizing a built-in wine rack that you know you won’t be storing wine in, or have fun discovering other ideas with a quick Google search.

  • Create visual harmonyStarting with the clean slate of a new place provides a great opportunity to discover (or be committed to) your sense of style by starting with only the things you use or love the most. Heads up, this could be a challenge when our psyches just want to unpack, settle in and have everything “back to normal” as soon as possible.  Myquillan Smith outlines this process beautifully in her book Cozy Minimalist Home 


More about Asking For Help


If you’re still overwhelmed with it all and would like to know more about working with a Professional Organizer as part of your plan to Ask For Help - you can contact me here!


Here are three benefits of working with Genesis Professional Organizing:

1.       Genesis roughly translates to “start” or “beginning” and that is what we do well – we help you by addressing a large or overwhelming situation and breaking it up into logical steps that become an action plan with a set timeline. We help you move from Stressful Overwhelm to Peaceful Self-Expression!

2.       Most people find that even hard or unpleasant tasks are easier to manage when you have someone to support you by sharing the load. We can help by doing the work with you or even for you!

3.       We hold a space of empathy and respect for both our clients and their things. 


I hope your move goes well!!


Cindi Banman

Serving Airdrie, Calgary, and the surrounding areas

Trained Professional Organizer with the Professional Organizers in Canada


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