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How to Prepare to Move to Another Home
By Janice Ortiz

First Steps:

- Schedule a mover two months before your move.

- Most important, start packing early so you will not feel overwhelmed and stressed.

- Start a file for your moving receipts, they may be tax deductible.

Packing Instructions:

- Take one room at a time and purge anything that you know you will never use or is old and unusable. Make a bag of any good will items and have one of the following organizations come and pick up your items: tricountyredcross.org, salvationarmy.org, lupus.org, pickupplease.org.

- Depending on the size of your home, purchase at least 25 boxes so that you do not have to make several trips. Once you pack up the 25 boxes, you will get a better idea of how many more boxes you will need. Boxes can be purchased at storage facilities.

- Purchase bubble wrap from the storage facility as well.

- Save your newspapers prior to your move – newspapers are good for wrapping things as well as bubble wrap and costs a lot less money.

- Purchase clear packing tape to seal each box. (Purchase at Home Depot).

- Purchase stick on labels for each box (can be purchased at Staples or any place that sells office supplies) and label the contents of each box. Be sure to give each box a number and a color.

- Purchase colored circle labels or square labels and stick one color on each box. Decide which color will represent which room the box goes into. For example, yellow stickered boxes go into the kitchen, blue stickered boxes go into bedroom 1, etc.

- Keep a separate list of the box numbers and items in the boxes. (See attached list)

- Find your instruction manuals for all electronics and anything that needs to be connected or assembled. Put them in a large envelope and put them in a safe place where they are easily accessible. If the movers need to assemble something and have a problem, you will know where the instruction manuals are located.

- Keep a tool box accessible on moving day and know where it is when you move into your new home. Do not pack your tool box in a moving box. Take it with you. You will be looking all over for your tools and you will definitely need your tool box to be accessible.

One Month Before you Move:

- Go to the post office and fill out a change of address form with the date you would like your mail to start being delivered to your new location.

- Notify medical doctors, dentist, eye doctor, schools, work, etc. of your new address.

Two Weeks Before you Move:

- Notify the following companies of your new address: cable, electric, telephone, gas, home insurance, car insurance, life insurance, charge card companies, bank, etc. of your new address.

- Gather up your last month of bills and put them in a separate file that is easily accessible in case you have to contact any of these companies when you move into your new location.

One Week Before you Move:

- Pack your valuables, these include passport, insurance papers, property deeds, auto-mobile ownership, etc as well as cash and jewelry. Plan to keep these valuables with you.

- Clear the refrigerator; use any perishable foods and limit any repurchases.

One Day Before You Move:

- Confirm with your moving company that you are scheduled for the date and time agreed upon

- Empty, defrost and clean your refrigerator.

- Clean your stove

- Pack medications and any other necessities

- Gather up house keys for new owner

Day of your Move:

- Point out to moving crew anything that is extremely delicate.

- Do a final walk through of each room, every closet, the attic and the garage to make sure you have taken everything with you.

Special Note:

Once you are in your new location, don’t forget to go to motor vehicles and change your address on your license.

Meals for the first few days in your new home: Pack a separate box for kitchen items that you may need to use to cook with during your first couple of days in your new location in case you have not had time to unpack and organize all or your belongings. This box should contain pots, pans, utensils, dishware or plastic dishware and basic seasonings.

Pack an overnight bag: Pack a bag as if you were going on a weekend vacation. You may not have the energy to unpack everything the day of the move. Pack a couple of changes of clothes and all of your toiletries and necessities to travel and most importantly, add a roll of toilet paper to that bag.

Things not to pack: Items that are flammable, corrosive or explosive are not to be packed. This would include propane tanks, motor oil, fireworks, ammunition, acid, darkroom chemicals, and charcoal, among others. Leave these items with neighbors or friends or dispose of them properly through recycling or junk removal services.

Perishable Food – For long distance moves, perishable food items are something you do not want to pack. Again, you will have to leave these with your lucky friends and neighbors. For local moves that will take under 24 hours, you should be able to transport perishable food items with proper packing.

Plants – Depending on the state or country lines, some plants may or may not be allowed to be transported. Some moving companies will not transport plants, or if they do, will not take responsibility for damage to plants. Check with the U.S. Department of Agriculture for regulations on moving plants across state lines.

Suggested Stores Needed Before During and After Your Move:

- Closet Systems Websites: California Closets, Contemporary Closets, Closet Pro, Closets for Life

- Container/Storage Websites: Rubbermaid, The Container Store

- Charitable Donations: ARC, Calvary Lighthouse, Furnished with Love, Salvation Army

- Electronic Donations: Best Buy, Cell phones for Soldiers, Earth911.com, My Green Electronics, TIA E-cycling

- Electronic Resale: CEX (UK company with 3 stores in NYC)

Consignment Shops:

- ConsignmentTraders.com (732-895-6936),
- Elegant Exchange (women) 732-223-8200,
- Red Balloon (children) 732-223-3770,
- Squan Sport Swap (732-612-3678) (sports, dance goods and video games)
- Game Stop for trading in video games

Shredding: Autoshred

Junk Removal – 1-800-Got-Junk
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About the Author

Janice Ortiz, Born To Organize, LLC
Englishtown, NJ 07726
732-500-7920

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