Moving house can be stressful. In fact, according to the Employee Relocation Council it’s the third-most stressful event in life, behind death and divorce. Even when your moving day goes smoothly, the experience can still be extremely tiring and difficult.
Luckily, there are plenty of ways to make the stressful experience of moving house a lot more manageable. From contacting your council before you move to decluttering before you move, read on to learn how to reduce the stress of moving house.
Prepare boxes, labels and pack ahead of time
The closer to moving day you pack up, the more stressful the experience is. Items start to become out of place, boxes of important items seem to vanish and the whole experience – which is tough at the best of times – becomes almost impossible.
De-stress the process of moving by planning your items into certain categories and packing them into boxes ahead of time. Once they’re packed, label the boxes clearly so they’re nice and easy to find and placed in the right room when you reach your new home.
Keep valuable documents on your person
From business contracts to deeds and bonds, there’s nothing more stressful than the thought of important documents being unavailable to you when you move. Avoid this problem by packing your valuable documents into their own dedicated container that you keep with you.
From banking information, business contracts, passports and forms of ID, pack all of your essential business and personal documents into a binder or organiser and bring them with you while you move. If they’re right on your person, there’s no risk of them being lost when you need them.
Remember that if you leave your “essential documents” box inside your home, your moving company could mistake it as just another package. For extra security, pack it inside your car before you move so it’s right there as you travel.
Use moving as an opportunity to declutter
Have you ever heard the saying “the impediment to action advanced action?” This ancient stoic saying means that difficult tasks – in this case, moving house – can be opportunities in disguise to do things you’d otherwise avoid.
If your home is full of clutter and items you rarely use, moving is a great opportunity to clean up and throw away things you don’t need. While you’re packing, put clothes and other items in “throw out” and “donate” piles to give away before you move.
Alert your local council before you move out
There’s more to moving house than just relocating. From council tax to bills, there’s a seemingly endless list of administrative tasks and fees to complete and pay before you can truly settle in to your new residence.
Take the stress out of the administrative side of moving house by alerting your local council to your move ahead of time. Our guide to moving house and council tax has all the information you need to take care of the administrative side of moving.
Pack an “open first” entertainment container
Packing up and moving house is stressful. Unpacking is often even more stressful. To make the long and rather boring task of unpacking easier, prepare a bag with your favourite CDs, a small stereo and even some board games to keep you entertained.
This is particularly important if you’re moving house with young children, who will quickly become bored (and sometimes uncomfortable) in their new environment. A day bag with toys, books and CDs inside makes the process of unpacking more fun.
As well as toys and digital media, pack some snacks to keep your stomach filled and your energy levels high while you unpack. Moving isn’t just stressful – it’s also very draining – and having a nutrient-packed snack at the ready can be very helpful.
Hire your moving company ahead of time
Hiring your moving company at the last minute is a recipe for a stressful move. Not only will you have less time to prepare for their arrival; there’s also the possibility that they’re unavailable on your desired moving date.
Take the stress and uncertainty out of choosing a moving company by booking your movers ahead of time. Let them know when you’re moving, how much space you’ll need and where you’re moving to so that they’re 100% prepared for your big day.
Got children? Ask friends or family to help
Are you moving with young children? If so, consider asking a close friend or family member to look after them while you move. Moving can be even more stressful for kids than it is for adults, especially when you’re moving a long distance.
By letting a family member watch your children for you, you gain plenty of time to unpack their belongings before they arrive. This way, they can decorate their rooms with you once you’ve unpacked essentials like beds, chests of drawers and sofas.
Unpack your possessions room by room
Here’s a great way to simplify the process of unpacking: instead of opening multiple boxes at once and filling up your entire home part by part, begin with one room and don’t move on to the next one until it’s 100% furnished, unpacked, put away and decorated.
A good strategy is to start with your master bedroom. Assemble your bed first, then shift your bedroom furniture into place. Put on the sheets and bedding, vacuum the floor and move onto the next room.
This way, even if you’re only half-finished unpacking and decorating by the end of the day (and it’s very possible you will be), you’ll still have a furnished bedroom to sleep in on your first night.
Start the day with a strong cup of coffee
Moving house isn’t just stressful – it’s also incredibly tiring. Even if you’re not doing the heavy lifting yourself, the task of unpacking combined with the stress of being in a new location with nothing seemingly to hand can leave you feeling tired and ready to sleep early in the evening.
Prepare yourself for moving day by waking up early and preparing an energy packed breakfast that will keep you full until long after lunchtime. If you’re a coffee drinker, add an extra shot to your morning espresso – you’ll thank yourself for it by the afternoon.
Are you ready to move?
The key to avoiding stress is preparation. When we’re unprepared for something – whether it’s moving house or giving a speech in front of an audience – we naturally feel stressed and uncomfortable.
Fight the stress of moving through preparation. Whether you’re moving around the block or across the world, apply the tips above and you’ll enjoy a smoother, easier and less stressful moving day.