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7 ways to make moving house easy

By  Kimberly Gillan

There's a particular type of groan that is involuntarily elicited from anyone about to move house. Whether you’re relocating to the next suburb or across the country, weeks are spent packing, cleaning and organising before an exhausting moving day and subsequent weeks spent trying to find the perfect nook for your bits and pieces. But there are ways to make moving more seamless.

1. Clear the clutter

If time is on your side, then some de-cluttering in advance will dramatically reduce what you need to pack. Whether you hold a garage sale to clear unneeded items, take the Marie Kondo approach (made famous in her bestselling book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up) of asking whether each of your possessions brings you joy and binning any that don't, or you simply grab a garbage bag and toss anything you no longer want, the more ruthless you can be, the less you'll have to pack.

2. Allow ample time

It can be tempting to save dollars by finishing leases or signing settlement on the same day you move, but doing so just heightens stress levels. If you're able to negotiate some crossover, you'll have plenty of time to give your old place a thorough clean and do paint touch ups or little maintenance jobs on your new pad before your furniture gets in the way. If you can’t take a whole week off for the move, we recommend giving yourself two days at the very least (preferably over a weekend) to help make the process easier.

3. Update your address

A few weeks before you move, start listing all of the organisations you need to update with your new address – think Medicare, the ATO, insurance companies and your car rego and driver's licence. Stick it on the fridge and add to it whenever you get mail or an email alert that reminds you of an account you need to update, so that when you move you can dedicate an hour to updating your accounts in one go. If that sounds too painful, it might be a good idea to purchase mail forwarding from Australia Post to cover you until you get around to updating everyone.

4. Arrange your utilities in advance

There's no better way to wind down after a hard day's moving than with some Netflix, but if your power and internet aren't connected then you'll be stuck with candlelight. While electricity and gas connections are generally quick, telephone and internet can take much longer, so it’s a good idea to book in your technician visit a few weeks in advance. Speak to your electricity, gas, telephone and internet companies as soon as you have a moving date to ensure that everything is switched on when you walk in.

5. Use your permanent marker wisely

Packing boxes is the definition of boredom, and it can be tempting to whizz through the process at breakneck speed without pausing to label your boxes, but this is a rookie mistake. Taking the time to carefully organise and label every box by room may make packing take longer, but it will be a lifesaver when you get to the other end. It’s a good idea to ask your movers to deposit each box in the room it’s destined for, particularly if you’re new pad has stairs, to save you from hauling heavy boxes between rooms.

6. Pack an overnight bag

Moving house can take a few days and getting properly settled can take even longer – particularly if you have little kids. Save yourself the trouble of digging through every box just to find your toddler’s favourite toy by packing overnight bags for your first few nights in your new home for each member of your family. Think: snacks, water bottles, underwear, pyjamas, toiletries, towels, favourite toys and entertainment for the kids, plus changes of clothes for the next few days.

7. Shout lunch

When it comes to moving, you can never have too many helpers! With a bit of luck, you'll have roped in some friends and family to help with the move, and it's only fair that you reward their hard work with some good grub and refreshing drinks. Whether you get a pizza delivered or send your in-laws down the street to pick up take-away, you'll need some sustenance to fuel the unpacking and keep you in your mates' good books.

If you’re moving house, it’s also a good idea to organise adequate insurance for your new home. Luckily AAMI offers Home & Contents Insurance and Home Building Insurance for both renters and homeowners. Learn more now.


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