Moving House Sucks - Tips To Make It A Bit Better
From someone who has lived in roughly 15 of them.
Packs one box. Source: A Girl On A Journey
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Ugh, is there anything less fun than moving? Maybbeee jeans or bathers shopping, but you're here for light entertainment, not a horror show checklist. Personally, I've moved maybe 15 or 16 times. As a child of divorce (woe is me!) I lived in about 10 houses before the age of 18, and in my haphazard adult life, I'd add another five or so to the list. So, I've MOVED, y'all! That said, my latest move was the first into a property I had actually purchased. Whilst the below guide may touch on a few tips specifically for that, generally speaking, the below applies for ALL moves. You don't wanna be stuck with dud neighbours with a drip shower with a partner who you may or may not want to kill after moving day (talking about a friend).
Alright. So. Make sure you...
Have it in the contract that your new place will be professionally cleaned
Wtf is all this shit? Source: GiPHY
FFS! This seems to be standard when renting, but for some reason, not when buying. I almost threw a fit when we spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on a house and the bathroom and floors were gross. Try to put it in writing that it needs to be professionally cleaned. Oh, and also - buy yourself a new toilet seat. Like...think about it. But not for too long, obv. Just do it.
Get a conveyancer
You're saying legally I have to do the Macarena for my neighbours weekly? Source: GiPHY
These can be a little pricey (around the 1k-2k mark) but are really worth it. Basically, the conveyancer goes over the property contract and spots any anomalies or red flags. Like, my man friend and I were super keen on a place, turns out all the people who lived on the strata were going to court over titles, who owned which percentage of the backyard, were in fights with each other and with against the big corporations - CBF! Abort ship! This was 1K well spent to get out of this fucking mess.
Check the floors
Possibility vs reality can be a crushing blow... Source: GiPHY
UGH. Wish we had done this. Worth making sure they're up to scratch because if not, this can cost you serious $$$ down the track. Make sure the floors don't need restumping, or if you're wanting new flooring (e.g. to remove carpet) think of the costs involved if the flooring underneath is fucked. Or you know - just get a cute rug.
Check everything you would use in day to day life
We don't want this situation. Source: GiPHY
Cannot stress this enough. The number of places I've moved in, sashayed around only inspecting where the dance floor will be for the many parties I think I will host (but never do) was so dumb. Had a dribbling shower, an aircon that doesn't work (shakes fist to the sky), no light globes. Ugh! There's no landlord to sort it out when buying, that's all on you! Do your due diligence and act like you've come home for the day. Flush the toilet. Turn on the shower. Switch the lights on and off. Try all the taps. If it's furnished, sit on the couch, the bed. Don't be shy, this will be what you are paying for, so make sure you know what you are getting. If you're too WASP, Nikki and I can be hired out to be overly opinionated for a very large fee.
Get rid of your shmontz before you move
Get outta here! Source: GiPHY
Don't wait to unpack and decide you don't need half your crap. I just went methodically, room by room, and chucked out all the things we didn't need. It made it much easier come packing time when I didn't need to decide if it was coming - useless stuff had already been chucked. Of course, you may change your mind later, but knowing areas like the bathroom cabinet have been cleared of your 2003 Proactive creams just makes shoving all your crap in a box so much easier come the even more horrific UNpacking time.
Spend the week packing
Footage of me day of the big move. Source: GiPHY
Ugh. Packing is the WORST. I want to be a rich person who can pay people to pack and unpack. Imagine! But yeah, if you have the ability to take some time, do it slowly. Trying to do it in one day makes no sense, like, you will obv need your tv and coffee machine the day before. Also, packing isn't like the movies with everything in neat boxes. There's weird shit like plants and kitty litter and tchotchkes and other shmontz. So just take it slow and try to handball everything to the person you live with, should you be so lucky...
Spend money on movers
Omg pls unpack it all too! Source: GiPHY
Now, obviously, I know this is not applicable to everybody. It was the first time I did it myself, cos it feels really expensive and lazy. All I'm saying is, if you can weight up the costs of hiring a truck and DIY, we found it was actually EXACTLY THE SAME. If you are able to do this, it really does save so. Much. STRESS. Obv don't be a dick about it and have your stuff ready to go. But just getting shit in the right room, not arguing with the person you're moving with over who-does-what is a giant time-saver in physical and mental labour.
Lay clothes in the back of your car or keep them on a hanger
Me after packing one shirt. Source: GiPHY
Hanging clothes don't need to go in a box. If they're on a rack, keep them on there. If they're going from one wardrobe to the next, lay them down in the back of your car and re-hang. You can even get boxes with a rack inbuilt in them here.
Rope in friends who offer to help
Note: they may not remain friends with you afterwards. Source: GiPHY
My manfriend and his mates all just help each other move. Sounds horrendous, obviously (my friend couldn't BELIEVE there are people out there who help people move FOR FREE!) but saves them all time and money and it all comes out in the wash. I had a few friends offer, and normally I wouldn't dare actually say yes, I need help. It feels like I'm being too needy or ridiculous or something (we'll unpack that another day...) But with one girlfriend, I relented. She was great. She is very organised and did my whole pantry, The Home Edit-style, as I put things away in the kitchen. It was amazing. We are close enough that when I asked her to help me move a couch, I was met with a firm NO and a quick speed off in her Nissan, but you know. We both know our boundaries. What else are friends for?
Have a Go-To Day Pack
Re-living the trauma that is moving house... Source: GiPHY
This is actually super helpful. The day before your move, put together a bag (and keep it with you!) that has everything you'll need for that day so it doesn't get lost like socks in the dryer. Think sheets, blankets, your charger, downloaded shows on your iPad, toothbrush, snacks, a lamp, shower stuff and of course, the wine to drink and cry into later.
Wait to buy shit
I'll never admit it to my man friend. But mistakes? I've made a few... Source: GiPHY
Everyone has said this to me, and naturally, I have not listened cos I LOVE BUYING STUFF AND THEN CHANGING MY MIND (see, 'What The Fuck Have I Just Done: Buying A House Edition'). I had such a vision of what I wanted my house to be and all the stuff I needed, but it really changes when you're in there. You may decide actually, there isn't room for a dining table AND a foosball table. The dresser is too big, you spent $300 on what you thought was a large buffet on Facebook marketplace that turned out to be two oddly shaped bedside tables. Not speaking from experience or anything. But just try your hardest to cool it on the credit card swipe. Leave it in the online cart hun. And as my condescending but annoyingly correct man friend would say, measure, measure, then measure again!
Don't expect to do it all in one go
Me whenever I am asked to do the bare minimum. Source: GiPHY
I totes don't practice what I preach here, but maybe if I write it down I will adhere to it. It's hard to accept that it won't look perfect right away. That people will come over and see boxes, an old bathroom, paintings on the floor. I'm trying to accept that it isn't possible and instead trying to focus on 'zones' e.g. like the lounge room to fix, and shoving all my crap in the second room (as everyone does, right?) Baby steps to not feel overwhelmed. It's hard!
Do something non-house related and fun that night
Fuck yeah. Source: GiPHY
Cannot stress this enough. If you're moving with someone, especially a partner, you will argue. If you don't, you're weird. You may fantasise about them disappearing and you getting all their super and the insurance money and moving to a place that is turn-key and has none of their crap in it (speaking for a friend again, naturally). But we now ensure on moving day, that night, my man friend and I do something totally fun (ideas here). A movie, dinner at the pub with friends, bowling, and don't talk about the move. At the end of the day, you're in a new place - after all the sweat and tears, that's exciting!
Do you have tips for moving? Let us know!