Stressed girl packing up boxes

9 Common Moving Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Are you planning on relocating, and you wish to dodge all the most frequent moving mistakes? It’s easy to make them since there are just so many things on a to-do list when relocating – so some of them simply slip out of your hands. However, you can successfully prevent them. We have just the tips on how to move and not to make any of the errors that people usually make.

#1 One of the Most Frequent Moving Mistakes Is Not Starting on Time

The biggest cause of moving stress is when you’re relocating with not enough time to prepare. Whether you’re moving with pets, kids, or alone, you will need at least a month to finish everything without feeling overwhelmed. Starting any later than that can cause problems since you’ll have to do a lot of tasks at once. That also means that you’ll probably forget to do something, which can end up badly.

Our tip: To avoid forgetting anything, start preparing for your move the moment you’re sure that you’re relocating. That will leave you enough space to plan tasks and do everything worry-free, even if the schedule you made gets messed up because of some unpredictable reasons.

A girl carrying boxes in her home
Don’t procrastinate - one of the crucial tips is to start preparing for your move ASAP

#2 Skipping Decluttering Before You Start Packing

All of us own at least one garbage bag full of stuff that we’ll never use and that we probably even forgot that we have. If you skip decluttering, you’ll end up covering and protecting some stuff that will just collect dust in your new place. Not to mention that moving cross country with more things means paying a higher price for the move. You will have more packages to carry, load on the truck, and unload. It’s just unnecessary work and a waste of time and money.

Our tip: Get rid of all of the items you don’t need anymore, especially if you’re moving to another state alone. Anything that’s not on your new apartment checklist shouldn’t be packed and moved to your new home. Decide what you’ll do with those things. You can give them to someone or donate to an organization or charity if you wish to help those in need and if those things are in good condition. If not, throw them away. Another option is to sell them online and to earn some extra money.

A napkin on the table with words written on it
Keep only the things that you’ll need in the other home

#3 Doing Things Alone Without Asking for Professional Help

Handling household items sometimes calls for some special skills, supplies, and experience. Different materials and shapes demand different care, and not everyone knows how to do it properly. This is especially true for fragile objects – if they’re not packed well, you might arrive in another state only with pieces of your breakable belongings.

Our tip: Ask someone with experience and expertise to show you how it’s done or hire cross country movers to do this for you.

You Can Avoid This by Checking Out Some Useful Guides Online

If you weren’t planning on paying for movers, there’s another option. There’s a lot of great content online where you can see and read about how to pack plates or how to pack clothes for moving. Be sure you know how to pack glasses so that they arrive safely. In case you need to learn how to move a piano, keep in mind that it is possible, but it’s definitely better to leave it to the experts.

A girl and a guy sitting at home looking at a laptop
Read about how to handle certain things you’re relocating so that they survive the trip

#4 Packing Without Order or a Plan

No matter if you’re moving internationally or you’re planning a local move, you’ll likely be bringing all of your possessions with you. A lot of people just start putting their things in boxes without any order or a plan. They also put different objects together, which causes them to bump into each other during the trip.

Our tip: Start packing room by room, and start with the items that you don’t use frequently but still need them. They can be packed even months ahead of the relocation day. Be sure you have adequate supplies and pack only similar stuff together. Heavy stuff mustn’t be in big boxes, and each package should be filled to the top.

Avoid This Mistake: Forgetting to Create an Inventory List of Your Home Items

One of the most important moving hacks is to create an inventory list of all your possessions. That way, you can follow through the whole process and always know what’s packed and what still needs to be protected and covered. This will also help you estimate how much the move will cost you since you’ll have all of the things on one list. Do it on your phone or write it down – it doesn’t matter. Just create one and be sure it doesn’t get lost or deleted.

A person taking a photo of shoes
You can also take photos of each item you’re relocating

#5 Not Labeling Boxes Causes a Mess When Unpacking

A bunch of cartons full of items on your new porch and none of them have a label, or in four words – a nightmare for unpacking. This is also dangerous for your breakables since you won’t know how to handle boxes that are filled with glasses or porcelain.

Our tip: Write down a detailed description of what’s inside of each box. You don’t have to do it on the box – it can be somewhere else if you’re afraid that someone might try to steal your boxes. You can also color-code them by rooms or content. Don’t forget the packages with breakables – put a visible label indicating that the contents of the box are fragile and that it has to be handled with care. Put “this side up” stickers, too.

Not Thinking About Unpacking While Packing Is Also One of the Common Moving Mistakes

When placing your things in a box, think about the unpacking of that stuff. If you didn’t pack clean sheets or clothes, they will wait for you dirty once you arrive. The same applies to the order of packing. Be sure you know where everything is at all times.

A man taping a box with a fragile tape
You’ll want to tape your boxes well and label them properly

#6 Not Buying Insurance for Valuable Items

This is especially important if you’re moving to a new city alone and you’re the only one responsible for all of your valuables. In case you’re relocating something that’s expensive and that you can’t buy again if it breaks, you must think about getting those items insured. If not, you could lose your precious items.

Our tip: Shop around and see what options are available for relocation insurance. There are several versions of insurance – basic, full value, and separate liability. If you own something very expensive, you might have to prove the worth with an appraisal – a receipt that will estimate the value.

A computer on a desk
Insure your expensive things and don’t worry about any damage

#7 Not Making a Moving Budget

Money is one of the biggest stressors in life in general, and the same goes for relocating. A good and thorough budget is essential for a move, particularly if you’re moving without a job and won’t have a safe source of income as soon as you move. Relocating isn’t cheap – unexpected costs can appear out of nowhere, and you might be left with a zero on your account.

If You Didn’t Make a Budget, It Could Cause Many Moving Problems

Creating a moving out for the first time budget is a must if you want to make your relocation stress-free and smooth. The worst-case scenario could be that you end up without enough money to pay for the services you require, and the whole move just goes downhill.

Our tip: Do research online and see how much everything costs. Start saving money ASAP, and don’t plan a move if you’re not completely sure that you’ll have enough for everything. Divide your budget into several different segments such as the move, packaging, supplies, and so on. That way, you’ll keep better track of how much you’ve spent.

A calculator with costs written on the screen
Costs of relocating are high - be sure you’re prepared for that before the relocation day

#8 Forgetting to Set up New Utilities and Change the Address

This is also a pretty common situation. Many people relocate without calling providers and setting up utilities in their new place. That results in coming to your apartment in another state and not having water and electricity. When you add not having water and electricity to the fact that all of your possessions are in boxes and suitcases, it becomes a complete mess. The same goes for changing addresses. New residents will continue to receive your mail, and you’ll risk having problems with someone reading it or throwing it away.

Our tip: A week or two before the day of the relocation, call your current utility provider and let them know that you’re going to move. That is also the time to call the new utility provider and to get your new place ready. Also, emember to visit the USPS website and change your address on time.

A girl looking at a laptop
Changing your address will take only a couple of minutes

#9 Going With the First Company You Bump Into

No matter if you’re in search of an international moving company or you’re relocating down the block, make sure you know who the movers you’re working with are. If you hire a random business to provide moving services, there are so many things that can go south. You might get scammed, ripped off, or your things could be held hostage until you pay the amount of money that the company asks from you. You could also end up with damaged valuables and a company that claims it’s not their responsibility to reimburse you.

Our tip: Before you hand your belongings to someone, make sure that they are reliable, trustworthy, experienced, and professional. You can do that by checking the reviews online, calling the companies that catch your eye, and comparing the offers you received. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about the move. Make sure that there isn’t anything unclear left and that you will be charged the price that is promised. In case you require packing services or car shipping, choose a company that can provide you with that as well. Only the best movers should be responsible for your relocation.

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