I moved out of my parents’ house when I was 19 years old. Last time my mother counted I had moved 20 times since then! She should know – she’s helped me move every single time!
Some moves have been more organised than others! Our last move, I had a 9 month old baby so I wasn’t very organised at all (something I regretted on move day!).
Buying a house is so exciting and moving is way easier if you put some thought and planning into it.
Have a clear out & start organising early
We are talking a BIG clear out. Go through your cupboards one by one, organise your things into keep, sell, send to charity or take to your local recycling centre. I like to start this as soon as we’ve made the decision to move as it takes weeks to go through each room when you’ve got a busy life. This will also start to give you an idea of how much stuff you have and how many boxes you will need.
Pack a box of essentials
The most important piece of advice as is to pack a box of essentials for the move day. When you’ve spent the morning loading the van with all your boxes, you’ll be exhausted. Once you get to the new house the first thing you will want is a cuppa! Pack a box with a kettle, coffee, cups, tea, biscuits, snacks and toilet roll.
It’s also wise to pack a couple of screw drivers in the box just in case you can’t get any of the furniture into the new house and it needs to be dismantled (Believe me I have been there!). I also pop a few cleaning products in – you never know what state the house has been left in!
Put everything in the box, label it and make sure it’s the last box in the van and the first box to be taken into the new house.
You can probably pick this up anywhere but I’ve always bought a few big rolls from B&Q. You tend to find them in the gardening section. I bubble wrap all my valuables, pictures, mirrors and kitchen ware – then box them up and label the box as ‘Fragile’. This is another task that I normally start a few weeks before moving.
Box things up
Pack everything properly! You can buy special moving boxes including boxes with clothes rails in. But honestly, we’ve never been able to afford anything like that (especially not when you move as much as I have). I just go to the local corner shop and ask them to keep the boxes from their next delivery, then collect them a few days later.
Label all your boxes and furniture
I label the boxes saying which room they need to go in and briefly describe the contents, such as pots and pans for the kitchen. This way when you are unpacking the van at the other end you know where the boxes should go. Stickers can also be placed on the furniture to say which room they should go in. I also write ‘Fragile‘ on the box if it contains something valuable.
I also add an extra sticker or label on the boxes which contain things we are going to need soon. For example, baby clothes, work uniform and kitchen essentials to make them easy to find and be unpacked first.
Clean your house
Clean your house as you pack so on moving day you are not desperately trying to wipe the skirting board or clean the oven. If you have done the deep cleaning in advance, on moving day you will just need to give the house a quick hoover and wipe when its empty.
Do it yourself
We had a quote from a local removal company – we had a 2 bed house and we were only moving about 3 miles across the same town and we were quoted £800! In the end, we managed to hire a van for £150 for the weekend which saved us a whopping £650. When hiring a van, shop around as there can be big variations in quotes from different hire companies. We have found going around the van hire shops in person has given us better deals than the online prices.
Redirect your post in advance, you can set this up online but it takes a few days to come into effect so it’s always worth doing in advance. We have also called round the house after a few weeks to make sure there is not parcels or post which has been missed.