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Almost anyone, who has ever moved at any point in their life, will understand that moving can be extremely stressful. You are worrying about so many different things, from the moving tasks themselves to the thought of a new home. Although some stress with moving is normal, the truth is that a lot of the stress can be avoided by following some simple tips.

1)  Time, Time, and More Time

The absolute most important stress reducer is time. Start early! Give yourself an ample amount of time before the actual moving day to get things done. This includes allotting time for getting moving materials, packing, utility set up at the new place, cleaning of both homes, and locating a moving truck. When you are blocking out time, more is always better. Give yourself an extra day or two whenever possible to prepare for possible delays and avoid waiting until the last minute to get things done. Procrastination is not ideal when it comes to moving.

2)  Keep Routines

Moving can be a disruptive event. It can turn your normal daily life topsy turvy. Try to stay as close to your daily routines as you can. If you always go to bed at a certain time, stay as close to that as possible. The same applies with children and pets – that can markedly increase stress levels during a move. Although there may be some chaos thrown in, simple routine things such as the nightly dinner together or ending the day reading can keep the chaos corralled. You need to keep some level of consistency, even if your routine will change when you get settled in the new house.

3)  Plan Out As Much As Possible

In addition to creating a time block for getting things accomplished, you should create a good plan from start to finish. Start out with large tasks, and break them into smaller ones. The general task of packing can be broken down to one room at a time. Make checklists for as much as you can and include the estimated time allotment so that you have a visual deadline to hold yourself to.

4)  Organization is Crucial

Waiting until the last minute to get things done often means that everything is askew (see tip #1). You cannot find things you need or you wind up throwing everything you can all in one box. It might seem easier when you are packing to just cram whatever you come across into a box and go, but consider the nightmare you wind up with when you start unpacking those hodge podge boxes. Clearly label your boxes. Keep all your important papers within easy reach in a folder.

Part of being organized includes getting rid of unnecessary or unwanted items before you start packing. Instead of saying you will deal with it after the move and take it with you, get rid of it now. Go through your entire home and purge everything you do not need anymore. This is especially helpful when you are moving into a smaller sized home that may not have the same space to store things. After you start purging out that unneeded stuff, you may notice you have less to pack and move, which can reduce stress as well.

5)  Ask for Help and Hire Professionals

If you feel like there is just too much, consider hiring professionals. Most moving companies offer varying levels of services provided. More extensive options include professionals that will not only move your boxes and furniture, but also pack for you. If you prefer to just have more hands to move the stuff and pack everything on your own, local movers can do this as well. If you choose to hire professionals, make sure that you are clearly marking your boxes and rooms in the new house so that the movers can unload them and take them to the rooms they belong.

Pro Tip: When researching moving companies, be sure to find companies that specialize in the services you are looking for. For example, if you’re planning a local move (a move within the same town or close to it) it’s best to choose a local moving company like MoveDay Local Movers. Specializing creates efficiencies and efficiencies lead to less stress for you.

Additionally, asking for help from friends and family can go a long way in reducing your stress levels. Sometimes you may just need someone to talk with, while other times that extra set or two of hands can be handy. Do not be afraid to ask others for help with moving, but make sure you give them enough notice (and a bribe never hurts either).

6)  Save Extra Money

In addition to regular moving expenses, put back extra money as often as you can while you are preparing to move. It is a good idea to save at least one month’s worth of normal expenses to provide yourself with an emergency cushion. If something occurs that requires additional money or a last minute expense happens, you have that emergency funding available.

There are a lot of different tasks involved in moving, whether you are moving down the block, across town, or out of town. Stress levels can get quite high, especially as moving day gets closer. If you take steps ahead of it to plan well, you can drastically reduce your moving stress and the process becomes much easier.