When researching a move, you likely hear a lot about packing tips and tricks, and how hard it is to pack efficiently. While all that is true, it’s equally true that unpacking is a daunting task as well. But nobody really talks about it. Well, we’re here to change all that and let you in on some secrets to unpack all those boxes in your new home – without losing your mind!
Pack Right in the First Place
First, you have to have had the forethought to pack correctly from the start. Think about your sanity later when you’re packing. Be kind to yourself. Pack methodically and with the intention of “how will I unpack these things later?”. Being organized starts with packing up boxes by room, that’s for sure. But don’t stop there. Labels will be your best friend, and you will thank yourself later for clear, detailed labels.
Using stickers, markers or whatever else you like, label the contents of the box as well as the room it will be going into. Be clear about that, and keep your movers in mind. You may know what “home office” means, but they don’t. In parenthesis, write “first floor, second door on right.” This way, your movers will know where to place the box without any guesswork. This will avoid a bunch of boxes dropped haphazardly in your living room because no one knows where things go.
Use the Same Thinking for Unpacking: Room by Room
If you packed by room, it makes sense that you would unpack by room. Don’t make yourself crazy by unpacking a few boxes in one room, then hop around to another area, and then come back again. Dedicate one room a day, for instance, and commit yourself to unpacking all items and putting them in their rightful spot. Don’t just unpack and put everything on the floor. Place all your books in the bookcase first, then move onto your sock, underwear and clothing drawers. Tackle the closet in another step. Be methodical and deliberate as you move about.
But Before You Unpack Even One Item…
Do these things:
- Discuss the unpacking process with your spouse, family, friend, kids: whoever lives with you and is helping with this task.
- Get a pen and paper and label “discard” and “donate” areas or boxes.
- Create a system for taking note of any damaged items.
- Start with the most essential rooms that you need to use first, most notably: the kitchen, bathroom, and bedrooms.
Room by Room Guide
Each room needs special attention. Give it that attention by focusing on that one room at one time.
You will need to tackle this room fairly quickly because you will need to sleep in it – like tonight! Try not to turn it into a work zone, as this should be a haven for relaxing and sleeping. Get things unpacked as quickly as possible, but making the bed up should be a priority. Assemble the bed frame, add the mattress and put on the sheets. At the very least, if you make no other progress, you will have a safe, comfortable spot to lay your head on that first night. Extraneous things like books and clothing can wait till the next day.
Unpacking the living room will be a big task, simply due to the size of the room. Try these tips:
- Create functional zones to make the most use of the space, such as reading nooks, entertainment areas, and relaxation zones.
- Define spaces with area rugs, accent walls and furniture.
- Create the illusion of neat and clean spaces. Contain TVs, DVDs, CDs and gaming consoles behind cabinets, and make the best use of storage bins and shelves that you can.
- Don’t underestimate the amount of storage you will need. Get plenty of decorative bins, cubbies and shelving units.
- Focus on the large items first, such as tables, chairs, end tables, etc. Leave the knickknacks and other accents for later. They could easily get knocked to the ground when you’re rearranging your big pieces of furniture.
- Rotate your accents and décor rather than put them up all at one time. You don’t want a chaotic or cluttered space.
- Start with the basics you will need for dinner that night. Utensils, plates, spatulas and knives should be installed first so you have easy access to them.
- Keep your countertops free of clutter, at least for now.
- Place hard-to-store, awkward objects, such as bread and pasta makers in their respective storage areas.
- Place a white board on the fridge with a calendar, schedule and to-do list for everyone in the family. As a unit, you will all get through this move!
If several family members will be sharing the bathroom, come up with a color coding system whereby each person has their own different color basket, towel, bin or hanger.
Incorporate a clean, organized filing system when unpacking. Make it a goal that you will file paperwork once a week, and stick to it.
Rest of the House
Throughout the other areas of the house…
- Ensure traffic flow between rooms is obstacle-free.
- Create an unpacking to-do list organized by room, and check it off as you go.
- Give yourself a timeline on how much time will be needed to complete each task.
- Work in intervals, taking breaks often.
- Get rid of each box after unpacking its contents to keep clutter at bay.
Taking your time with the task of unpacking, sorting, and organizing can help you retain your sanity! We can help.
Contact Best Fit Movers
Our team offers packing and unpacking services to help you with these most daunting tasks of a move. Whether for your residential or commercial move, don’t hesitate to contact us for a free quote on packing and unpacking services. We are here to make the process go more smoothly so you don’t lose your mind.