• Your Room-By-Room Unpacking Guide

    Moving day can be an adventure, especially if you and your family are looking forward to opening boxes and putting belongings away in your new home. However, if everyone spent the past several weeks decluttering and packing, you might be more mentally and physically fatigued than you realize. You need a plan to open those boxes in an organized manner. Let’s get started with some tips to help you unpack.

    This infographic was created by Moving of America, a provider of long distance moving services

    Clean the New House

    Even though your new house or apartment has been vacant, it probably still managed to collect dust. Before moving in, tidy up with a vacuum cleaner, paper towels and spray cleaner. This should help keep your items dust-free while you put them away.

    Next, ask the movers to deliver your boxes and furniture to their designated rooms. Hopefully, you clearly marked the exterior of each box with their destinations. Give yourself bonus points if you used your phone to snap photos of the contents of each box to help you remember what’s packed inside. You might not need all those pictures, but if they help your kids quickly locate even one elusive item, the effort was worth it.

    Break Down Boxes as You Unpack

    It’s understandable to want to kick an emptied box out of the way to quickly tackle the next one. Instead, take a few minutes to remove the tape, flatten the boxes and store them until you can recycle them. Getting empty boxes out of the way can help you walk more easily around a room while you organize the space.

    Continue to Declutter While You Unpack

    Some unwanted or unneeded items might have made their way into your boxes while you were packing. Don’t feel like you need to keep everything you brought with you, especially if your new place is smaller than your previous home. If you don’t love an item of clothing or a piece of furniture, pass it along to someone who will appreciate it.

    More ways to recycle include:

    • Reviewing the online wish lists of your local nonprofit organizations.
    • Checking your city’s website for hours, locations and items accepted at recycling facilities, including e-recycling sites for broken electronics and household hazardous waste (HHW) sites for cleaners and lawn-care products.
    • Posting a message to your neighborhood newsgroup, offering your boxes and packing paper.

    Make the Beds

    Everyone will need a good night’s sleep after the big move, so assemble the beds and set them up with sheets, pillows and blankets. Prioritize the beds even if the bedrooms don’t get unpacked and decorated right away.

    Unpack the Bathrooms

    Since the bathrooms are used by everyone in the household, unpack the toilet paper, shampoo and soap next. Purchase a new shower curtain liner and new toothbrushes for each family member. Hang clean towels on the racks and store extra towels in the bathroom closets. Now, you can look forward to a relaxing soak in the tub at the end of move-in day.

    Organize the KitchenDecide where you want the coffee maker, toaster and microwave. Then, take a few minutes to move about your kitchen as if you were preparing dinner and imagine where the dishes and glassware should be kept. If you can’t decide, call your significant other or a friend into the kitchen and ask them to retrieve a dish from the cupboard, and then watch which cupboard door they instinctively open.

    Set Up the Family Room and Home Office

    Unpack the family’s entertainment room next. While everyone is playing video games, you can set up your home office.

    Overnight Bags

    The last things to bring into the new house — so they don’t get lost among all the boxes — are overnight bags for each family member. Inside each suitcase should be their essentials for the first night in the new house, such as pajamas, a change of clothing, toiletries and prescription medications.

    Moving to a new residence can be exciting and exhausting. Following these unpacking tips can help keep the relocation experience drama-free for everyone. See the accompanying resource for more information.

    AUTHOR BIO: Adam Warner is Content Strategist Manager at Moving of America. Previously, Warner wrote short stories across different magazines.

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