Moving yourself is a great way to save money and be in control of your moving experience. Before you back up the moving truck, ask yourself a few important questions to make sure you are fully prepared for a do-it-yourself apartment move.
Have you booked everything you need?
A self-service move requires managing a number of details yourself. One of the first steps in planning your move is to make necessary reservations.
If you are renting a moving truck, you should call in advance to reserve a truck that is large enough to hold all of your belongings and is available for the time you are designating to move. If you are saving money by borrowing a truck or other vehicle from friends, be courteous and make a “reservation” with them, as well.
It is a good idea to check with your apartment manager to see if you need to make reservations in your new community for a loading-zone parking spot or a freight elevator. (You will also want to reserve parking spots and the elevator at your old address for the move-out.)
Are you prepared to pack?
You’ve made the necessary reservations, and transportation is secured. Now it’s time to pack!
Before moving day arrives, gather all of the tools you will need to securely pack up your apartment. Collect free boxes from grocery and package stores, or buy boxes from a local moving company. In addition to boxes, you’ll need packing materials to protect items inside the boxes. Save your newspapers, or ask neighbors to donate theirs. You might also purchase packing peanuts from your moving truck rental company or from office supply stores, such as UPS.
Plan for packing efficiency by securing fragile items like dishes and glassware with soft t-shirts. Set aside a pile of blankets to wrap delicate furniture, such as mirrors and lamps. Finally, grab a few rolls of packing and masking tape to ensure boxes are extra secure for the move.
Who’s going to help?
You’ve done your homework, and you are ready to pack up and move out. But who’s going to help you carry your sofa and entertainment center?
Just as you reserved a moving truck, you will need to reserve your moving help in advance. Be sure to give friends and family advance notice so they can mark their calendars for the big moving day. Also, reward them for their efforts with a nice post-move dinner or individual gift cards.
The more organized you are, the more quickly your move will happen. Once you enlist help, make it easy on your helpers by following an action plan. You won’t want to leave a bunch of eager workers wasting time and energy trying to figure out what to do next. Give everyone assignments, and assign people to certain rooms or certain types of items.
What have I forgotten?
An important detail that might slip your mind is how to care for your children and pets during the move. The hustle and bustle of moving can be extra difficult with little ones underfoot, so hire a babysitter for small children or consider putting your dog or cat in a kennel for the day. This will cause less stress for them and for you!
It’s a challenge to remember everything involved in the move-yourself process, but advance planning and a moving checklist should help you cover the bases. Now that you’re ready for your self-service move, why not plan to take the money you are saving and treat yourself to a great housewarming party once you’ve moved in to your new apartment?
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