Moving House – A Guide To Getting Ready

It’s going to be stressful. You can pretty much guarantee it. The positive to understanding and accepting this is that you can do something about it and limit the amount of stress you’re going to be under. Those who love the challenge of organising an event will embrace the challenge – the rest of us? We’ll feel lucky to survive it in one piece.

We recently reached out to a few experts in the filed including AMC Removals who provide removal services in Edinburgh who were kind enough to share some their top tips to making it out of the other end alive. Good luck!

What’s the best type of move for you?

Realistically you have two options. You can do the DIY move by hiring a van and doing all the work yourself or you can bite the bullet and pay someone who knows what they’re doing to save you not just time but all that stress we were talking about too.

DIY

The DIY option should really only be for the smallest of moves. A single bedroom flat or apartment, a bedsit, an office or moving from a room in a shared house; all relatively low on belongings and furniture, all should hopefully fit in the back of a Ford Transit or even a Luton. Rent a van, fill it up, drive to your new abode and unload. Job done. It sounds easy but without meticulous planning you’ll still hit plenty of problems that will extend your day and your nerves as you go.

Professional Removal Services

A professional service will not only cover all the anomalies you will fail to spot but will accurately estimate how those belongings will fit into whichever size vehicle they’ll need, how to get them in, how long it will take to do it and a hundred other things along the way. They’ll even help you pack if you want them to. This is your option for anything bigger than a one-bed move or a very small two-bed flat where the occupants have very few belongings and a minimal amount of furniture.

Go professional if you can. You’ll be glad you did.

Essentials

Gather plenty of advice

People you know will have done this before you and will all have their input to make. They’ll recommend local movers, they could offer to help you pack or make your move, and they might even have a van!

Make lists

If you write it down you can’t forget it and forget it you will. There’s way too much to remember so your lists are your backup brain. Having a countdown to the day list is a must. A list of things to do on the day is too. Write lists, and cross off each item when it’s been taken care of.

Choose your movers carefully

Whatever your instinct is telling you to do don’t pick purely on price. Get three quotes from different companies, ask them all the same questions and ask them to visit you for a consultation in order to view all of your belongings and furniture. This way each quote will be based on the same details and you’ll also have the chance to weigh up each business for how they operate. Their professionalism is important, and how well they communicate with you. Be honest and give them as much information as they need, if items of furniture were trouble to get into the house or up the stairs tell them so they can make accommodations for getting them out again. Create a full inventory of all of your items for them; this will be a must for both them and you the further into the process you get.

Never move on a Friday

It may seem like the best day for your move but due to a few simple reasons it’s better avoided if possible. Your movers already know this is the movers preferred day and will often charge a premium for it if only to move customers into the less popular slots. Another reason is if there are any hold-ups or problems then the weekend isn’t the best time to resolve them. Banks are closed if you need financial clearance and a lot of other services will only be in operation Monday to Friday in the event of that unforeseen emergency.

Declutter

This is a must. Why on earth would you pay to move items you’re only going to throw away when you get there? Use separate boxes for KEEP – THROW AWAY – SELL – GIVE AWAY; the items you can sell will help towards the overall cost of the move so get your unwanteds on ebay or book a car boot sale. When giving things away consider recycling or charity donations. That’s always better than feeding a landfill.

It’s a good idea to do this before the movers call to assess you. Even if you tell them you’re throwing things out or getting rid of them they’ll often make accommodations for the fact that their customers too often don’t get around to it. If you don’t want it going on your quote get rid of it in advance.

Everything must go!

Don’t assume your movers are mind readers, if they can see it they’ll pack it. Anything in a black bag is property and not rubbish in their eyes. Be prepared for them and make their life easy. If it’s rubbish, throw it away. If it isn’t, label it.

Packing

Start as soon as possible

It’s never too early. You’ll be amazed how much more you own than you thought – you’ll probably still be packing the night before however well organised you’ve been.

Pack directly from the cupboard, why make extra work for yourself and use up important clear space in the process?

Use your inventory

Once you’ve made your inventory make sure you pack everything into its relevant box and label it accordingly. This is a must for unloading. Your movers will need to know what’s going where and this is their key. Your inventory will help you choose how many boxes you need for each room and all your items.

Gather materials

Use double walled boxes wherever you can. Use strong tape; standard sellotape is useless against the needs of bursting boxes full of your treasured belongings. You’re going to need marker pens, a notepad, packing paper, newspaper, bubblewrap and of course your boxes. Have them all ready before you start.

You can even get wardrobe boxes. These will help you avoid ironing and folding, and will save you a lot of time. Check with your removal company if they offer them as part of the service.

Boxes

Fill all boxes to the top. This will stop them collapsing when stacked on top of each other.

Keep an eye on their weight; put heavy items on the bottom and when they’re starting to feel heavy top them up with lighter items.

Keep all same room items in the same boxes and label them for that room. When labelling write on the tape. The movers will know that these are your instructions if the boxes have been previously written on. It also makes the boxes reusable for any future moves.

You can use bedding to wrap delicate items and don’t be afraid to use a lot of packing material; paper, newspaper and bubblewrap are cheap – replacing your items isn’t.

Your removal company will provide all sizes of boxes. Check with them beforehand about what they have available, what will be included in your quote and if they come at an additional cost then compare prices to boxes you can buy online – you could save yourself some money.

Important items

Never pack your most important documents. Keep them safe and in your personal bag for easy access and safety’s sake. Other documents such as birth and wedding certificates, insurance documents, vehicle documents, passports etc., pack them all together. Keep them all safe.

And above all – never pack your keys. You’re going to need them to get into your new house!


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