5 Ways to Prepare For Your Move (Before You Even Find a House!)

Monday, April 18, 2016

When we bought our first house, it was a super easy and quick process, but this time around house hunting felt like it took half of forever.  Mostly I was just impatient after having waited for about 5 years to talk Hubby into moving in the first place... At any rate, I began to find busy work for myself because sitting around staring at the same boring house listings was getting old and discouraging really quickly.  If you are having a hard time waiting, like I was, then this is a simple list of to-dos to keep you busy and get you a head start on the long process of moving.

1. Purge.  Declutter.  Prune.  Exfoliate.

Whatever you want to call it, just get rid of your crap....  By far the most common advice that I got when telling people that we were house hunting was this: Stuff accumulates, get rid of it now so you don't have to take it with you.

2. Pack the Closet.

Everybody has that one space that is being used as the dumping grounds, that one booby-trapped closet where everything gets stuffed to be dealt with "later".  Guess what time it is?!?  That's right, it's LATER!!!! Get in there and deal with it now.  If it's stuff that you are getting rid of then get rid of it.  If you are taking it with you then put it into a real box, label it, and stack it back in there nice and neat.  Oh, and then don't add any more to that space unless it is also in a neatly packed box!

3. Off Season Items.

This is a fairly easy thing to get packed, as long as your move is not going to span seasons.  We were moving in early spring so I packed up all the summer stuff like swimsuits and small yard toys.  We weren't using them anyway so packing it up was an easy way to check one more thing off the list for moving day.

4. Do Some Detailed Dreaming.

I'm assuming that you have a pinterest account.... but this step is a little more than pinning a hundred ideas for each room.  When you start searching for houses you start seeing all the things that you might have to deal with in each house.  One has terrible carpet, the other one has missing appliances, and another one has an outdated bathroom.  Start preparing now by "window shopping" for some of the basics like flooring, appliances, kitchen cabinets, bathroom fixtures, etc.  Make a mental or physical list of some median prices for each of these things (or maybe pick out exactly which one you like!).  The idea here is not that you are going to buy all of these things for the new house, but if you see a house that needs any of the items from your list you will know exactly what kind of cost is involved.  Then when it comes time to make decisions, the footwork will already be done.  The stressful, busy weekend of the move is not the time you want to be making serious life decision like which fridge you are going to have to buy.

5. Fix the Little Things.

You know that honey-do list you keep adding to that never seems to get done?  What time did we say it was, again?  Right, it's later, and it's time to deal.  Break out the tools, buy a few supplies, and fix all those little details that need fixing.  Oil the squeaky doors, replace the missing piece of trim, caulk around the sink, replace the front light fixture..... whatever is on your list, now is the time to check those things off.  It will make you feel better for whatever amount of time you are still living there, it will mean less things on your todo list when you prepare the place for the next owner/tenant, and it will make them happy to see less things that they have to add to their todo list (It might even get your house to sell for a better price or help you to get more of your deposit back!)

Remember that everything you do now will be one less thing to deal with when you are organizing boxes, and moving schedules, and worrying about what you are going to eat for dinner when your dishes are packed in a box (and nobody seems to remember where it is!).

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