20 tips to make moving house a breeze

1. Declutter – you often know you will need to move long before it’s realistic to start packing, but it’s never too early to declutter. If you haven’t worn it in a year, give it to charity, if it has sat in the back of your kitchen cupboards since your last move, get rid of it. There is nothing worse than packing and unpacking a whole lot of stuff you don’t need and you don’t use.

2. Book your removalists early – Booking early means you get the day, time, and company you want, not whatever is left.

3. Book a council cleanup – most councils offer free or inexpensive rubbish pick up services, book one for a day or two before your move to get rid of all the bits and pieces that can’t be donated or that piece of furniture that’s been sitting in your garage for 3 years and never quite worked.

4. Clear a space for boxes – Whether it’s your garage, the spare room or your lounge room, clear an area where packed boxes can be stacked, so you can start packing sooner rather than later and you aren’t tripping over boxes for 3 weeks.

5. Get the right packing materials and boxes – having the right materials on hand can make packing 10 times easier, think boxes, packing tape, markers, butchers paper, (newspaper is no cheaper and leaves ink stains), and bubble wrap.

6. Start packing the non-essentials early – unless you’re going to hire packers to do it for you, start packing early to make the week of your move easy, decorative items, out of season clothes, storage cupboards etc an all be packed well in advance.

7. Think about the weight of your boxes – whether you’ve hired movers or you’re slogging it out with the help of a few mates, overpacked, heavy boxes, make everyone’s day worse and even makes your unpacking job harder.

8. Label your boxes – If you are hiring boxes, make sure you only write on the tape, but most importantly, label your boxes, not only will it help each box end up in the right room, but will make it that much easier to unpack.

9. Pack dishes vertically – vertically packed dishes with paper in between mean less chance of breakage.

10. Use clingwrap to avoid spillage – toilettries and liquids have a nasty habit of spilling, cover the top with cling wrap and then screw the top back on to avoid nasty surprises.

11. Pack an overnight bag – your overnight bag should have everything you would normally take on a weekend away, toothbrush and toothpaste, hairbrush, phone chargers etc so that on your first night you have everything you need on hand.

12. Set up an essentials box and a last minute box– Get two T-chests and label one essentials and the other last minute.

13. 10 things for your essentials box – box cutter, scissors, pen and paper, rubbish bags, coffee making supplies, new sponges and wipes, paper/plastic plates etc, TV remote, cleaning supplies, extension cords/power boards.

14. Eat down your fridge, freezer and cupboard – throwing out a whole lot of fresh food, melted icecream and packing a whole lot of cans is a pain.

15. Take photos of the back of anything that requires more than two cables – you’’ll thank us when you go to set them up again!

16. Have snaplock bags on hand – they are useful for screws, nuts and bolts, and other small bits and bobs.

17. Ask your real estate for a floor plan – label the rooms and your boxes the same and give it to your removalists, that way all your boxes end up in the right room. Don’t have a floor plan? Write the room names across an A4 page and bluetack them to the doors and then take your removalists for a 5 minute walk through before you start.

18. Pack boxes tightly – Not only does it mean you use less boxes, but it protects your belongings, less shifting means less chance of damage or breakage.

19. Keep important records with you – Birth certificates, passports etc belong in your own hands and car, not on the back of a removalists truck.

20. Create a handyman kit – Include allen keys, hammer, screwdrivers and an adjustable wrench. If pulling apart any furniture etc, put the pieces in snaplock bags, label them and add them to the handyman kit as you go.