Moving pain points & tips to cope
Updated: Jan 18
Everyone has experienced the pain of moving. Personally, I’ve felt that pain over 10 times. I even had a stint where I moved 7 times in 10 years. I don’t wish that on anyone, but it was the chase of the cheap rent in DC, what can I say? I like nice AND affordable. Either way, with this experience, I like to think of myself as a moving pro. While I hate the actual exercise of packing, unpacking and transporting, I do find some benefits in the moving process. Most importantly, it gives you the perfect excuse to declutter your apartment, home, and life. And this process starts with your clothes and closets and ends with your garage, attics, or other storage areas.
When you think about the energy that you have to put in to buying boxes, tugging items in and out and unpacking in your fab new home – you’ll start to reconsider every single item that you’re planning to take with you. So be wise and get rid of those unused and unwanted items in advance.
Some of these tips will change based on how far in advance you’re getting started on the move. First, estimate how many items you have per room and how many boxes it will require. If you’re in a congested city like me, even getting to Home Depot is a huge task, so I try to gauge the size of my stuff and make only one trip for boxes. This also helps to set some parameters on what space you have to use for packing. Now, this doesn’t include clothing bins, suitcases, plastic bags and any other items that you use to pack up, but it’s a good start.
Second, in a general area in your home, set up three boxes – one for donations, one for items to sell and the last to pass on to friends or family. When it’s time for you to start packing, start with the opposite season of clothes – so if it’s summer start with your winter clothes and vice versa. Follow one rule: pull out every single item and assess it. Otherwise, you’ll miss that crop top rolled up under a sweater or that specific v-neck tee folded closely to your not so favorite white tee or a pair of flip flops you forgot existed.
One of the easiest tricks is to follow the one-year rule – if you haven’t worn it last season, get rid of it. I definitely follow this, with minimal exceptions. Give yourself some time, you may need to try on a few pair of pants to make sure they all fit and consult your Vogue magazine to see if any style is coming back soon (we know everything comes back around, but if it’s not a classic piece, let it go). All items from one season should go into a storage bins in preparation for them to be stashed somewhere easily in your new place. See our blog with tips for creating a seasonal wardrobe, here.
Another trick is to get rid of items based on clothing categories. If you’re like me, once I find a shirt I like, I get them in all three colors. Then months later I’m complaining that all of my clothes are the same. If you’re going through this too, then try to minimize the clothes you have that are alike. If you’re questioning an article of clothing, try to think about how many ways you can match it in outfits. If it’s the one dress you’ve been holding onto just in case you get invited to a <<UNIQUE SPECIAL EVENT>> then just let it go, you can always buy another one. And hopefully you can resell it to recoup some of the cost.
And don’t forget about the boxes. For the items you no longer need or want, place them in the right category. If you struggle to get rid of things, again give yourself time, and once you sit it in the boxes, if you thought about it again, then take it out. If not, it belongs there. Keep this process going for the continued seasons, and other items in your home including electronics. Often times we get caught up in keeping old electronics, so make sure you assess those as well.
Depending on how long your transport is, pack up a suitcase with the clothes, toiletries and any other necessities that you’ll want to access quickly over the next week. During a move, you never know where things end up. So have that one suitcase with clothes, accessories and items that you’ll most definitely want to grab quickly.
Before you’re ready to get on the road, you’ll need to get rid of the three boxes. There are a number of charitable organizations in your area that are in need. Help them to help others. And, if you have friends that are similar sizes, catch up with them before the move to share the items you’ve selected for them.
Moving is a headache, but with these steps and other guides in our blog, it'll be less stressful and much more of a happy process. We're always posting tips on IG for reselling and organizing, so be sure to follow us.