Whether it’s moving to a completely new suburb or buying that first starter home, relocating represents a big change in anyone’s life and can be stressful.
Before beginning the process, take a look at five of the most common moving mistakes along with tips and strategies around each point to ensure a smoother transition into your new home.
Mistake #1: Starting too late
Packing, moving, cleaning, filling out documents, rental inspections and open viewings are just part of the larger moving process. It’s often a bigger endeavour than people initially realise, and having to deal with multiple issues simultaneously can be overwhelming.
We recommend planning at least six weeks in advance. You can start by letting the right people know. This includes your real estate agent, professional services like movers, cleaners or repairman that you’ll need to hire, your strata or landlord, and all of the utilities for your current property.
Mistake #2: Not having a packing strategy
After notifying all the necessary parties, you should plan your packing strategy. Too often, the strategy relies on throwing items into boxes as fast as you can, which tends to backfire during the unpacking stage in your new home.
A better strategy is to gather all the needed supplies first (cardboard boxes, tape, markers) and then label boxes according to each room you’re packing for. By tackling each room at a time, you can organise all the packed boxes during the moving process. This will pay dividends when you unpack as you won’t need to play hide and seek with missing items.
Mistake #3: Leaving a mess behind
Once your house has been emptied, you may find an even bigger mess than when you were living in the space. From little left-over knick-knacks to the dust bunnies living under your furniture, landlords and real estate agents expect the space to be spick and span. For the most part, real estate agents will expect your property to be left in the same condition as when you moved in, save for issues that arise from fair wear and tear.
The cleaners at This is Neat Cleaning noted that “The amount of last-minute calls from renters who have a giant mess on their hands is always surprising. Many times end of lease cleaners like us will have to come in and save the day. The few that are truly responsible, plan ahead with an end of lease cleaning checklist.”
Mistake #4: Not decluttering your life
Moving from one property to the next is the perfect time to reassess what truly makes a home, well, home. Over the years you may accumulate a mountain of items without even noticing it, and moving gives you the chance to decide if the items are important or should be thrown away.
At the same time, you can feel good about decluttering your life by donating to charities or op shops. Both the St Vincent de Paul Society and the Salvation Army offer drop-off donations where you can lighten your load.
Mistake #5: Not having a back-up plan
Moving days are always hectic and it’s not uncommon to run into a few problems. No matter how well you’ve prepared, having a backup plan can be a lifesaver. Let your friends and family know about your moving dates so you can have somewhere to crash if you need it, plan for secondary transportation if your “friend” doesn’t show up with the rental van, and keep a “day pack” of toiletries, clothes and cash for any last minute purchases.
By avoiding these five common mistakes, you’ll be ready to unpack your boxes in your new home in no time. If you’re looking for more resources to help with your move, check out our comprehensive Ultimate Moving House Checklist.