You’ve moved out of your old house and into the new, and by now you’re working on emptying as many boxes as possible, so that you can actually see your new floors.  We know that you’re exhausted from the entire move process, but don’t lose steam now!  Finishing this last step will make all the difference in the world.

STEP #6: Organize!

Set up functional systems in your new house, and start forming new habits and routines in an organized way early on.  Don’t wait too long. You don’t want to get used to throwing the clothes on the bedroom floor or digging through pantry shelves to find the snack you’re looking for. It will be harder to force yourself to make changes later.  And please don’t leave storage boxes stacked in the garage.  Remember how you just went through the old garage and attic and cleaned everything out?  Don’t set up for that again.  Get the garage in order with the goal of parking your car inside. You’re starting with a clean slate! Getting organized from the beginning will help keep it that way.  Come the next spring cleaning, next move, or the next holiday decorating season, you’ll be sending a thank you card to your former self.  Just make sure it’s sent to the right address, because no one likes getting someone else’s mail.


For those of you who’ve followed along with our Less-Stressed Move series these last weeks, we hope you’ve found our move preparation steps helpful.  Our goal is always to provide our clients with the smoothest transition possible.  Getting ready for a move, and don’t want to handle it all yourself?  Already moved in and need help with the organizing?  Just give us a shout.  We won’t leave you hanging.

Prepare New Home to Receive Boxes & Vendors

If you’ve kept up with our ‘Move Monday’ posts so far, then by now you know that your old home is all set for the packers and movers to arrive.  You’ve made it across the hurdle, the end is in sight!  It’s time to get that new house ready.

Step #5: Prepare New Home to Receive Boxes & Vendors


It never hurts to double-check and confirm dates, times, and logistics with your vendors.  Check the weather & prepare accordingly.  Determine what items will need to be available the first night you stay at the new home.

Care for Movers

Are you moving in the heat of the summer?  Consider providing the movers cold water bottles and snacks.  If it’s the dead of winter, maybe some hand warmers.  A few signs of goodwill can go a long way.


As much as you try to direct the movers’ foot traffic, it’s likely you won’t be available to give directions as every box and piece of furniture comes through the front door.  Hang signs at the entrance to each room, so that movers will know where to take items.  It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, just a handwritten label on a sheet of printer paper will do.  It will help dramatically in making sure boxes are taken to the correct rooms.


When unloading and unpacking, do your best to ensure that the ‘priority spaces’ are addressed first.  Nothing helps a new house feel like home more than being able to sleep in your own bed the first night.  Since you’re proactive and you’ve prepared, you have sheets, towels, and shower curtains that you hand-carried to the new house yourself.  Now, you just need the mattresses and bed frames.

The kitchen comes next, the most essential area to have up and running for you to have a functioning household.  The personal closets and bathrooms are obviously important, but if you’ve prepared a suitcase, they won’t be necessary to unpack the first day.


Boxes = anxiety, so get rid of them.  Open and break down as many boxes as possible.  Not just opening and emptying, but breaking down the boxes makes all the difference in the world.  Designate a spot in the garage to store broken down boxes and packing paper.  Getting as many boxes out of the house, even if the contents aren’t yet put away, will make it easier to find items, and help with stress levels.  Wardrobe boxes in particular are quick to unpack, and it makes a huge difference in how a room feels once they’re out of the way.

Once everything is in the house and the moving truck is gone, you can breathe a sigh of relief.  You made it!  And each box you unpack will bring a little more relief, we promise.  Now there’s only one step left, and it’s the part that we not-so-surprisingly love the most.  Organizing!


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Prepare for Packing

In last week’s "Move Monday" you sorted your belongings, reviewed each category, and purged what wasn’t going to the new house.  Now, it’s time to get ready for packing and moving day.

Step #4: Prepare for Packing


Call all vendors involved in the move and confirm dates, times, etc. Check the weather & prepare accordingly. Communicate with the movers which items will need to be unloaded first at the new house, especially items for the first night, so that these come off the back of the truck first.

‘Do not pack’

Before the packers arrive (or before you start packing yourself), create clearly labeled ‘do not pack’ bins.  Anything you may need in the transition time between packing and unpacking should go into these bins.  This includes functional items, such as clothes and toiletries, but also valuables, such as money and jewelry.  We recommend starting with a ‘do not pack’ bin in each bedroom, then consolidating all items to one location that can be blocked off from the packers.

Here’s our starter list of the most common ‘do not pack’ items:

  • suitcase of clothes
  • toiletries
  • kitchen items for a few days (utensils, dishes, etc.)
  • snacks and water
  • coffee
  • pet items
  • toilet paper
  • paper towels
  • soap
  • sheets
  • towels
  • shower curtains
  • trash bags
  • medication
  • paperwork for closing, and any other valuable documents
  • electronics chargers
  • kids’ homework and school items

Professional packers pack absolutely everything, so remember to empty the trash cans first.


If packers are coming to your house, make sure each room has a clearly labeled sign instructing where the contents are to go in the new house.  If the contents of the ‘guest bedroom closet’ are going to ‘Lucy’s bedroom closet’ in the new house, then make sure the boxes are labeled as such.  If you’re not sure which items are going into which room in the new house, think through the layout and make a plan before the packers arrive.  This will be crucial for organization on the other end of the move.  It will prevent you from moving boxes to different rooms while unpacking, or digging through heaps of boxes around the house to find a specific item.

Your current home is now ready to go!  Next week, we’ll talk about how to start things off right in your new home, starting with coordination on moving day.

Need the entire article asap? Contact us at and put “Move Blog” in the subject line. We’ll send it all to you now.


In last week’s "Move Monday," we addressed the necessity of preparing for a fresh start.  If you’re ready for a clean slate, it’s time to put the new plan into action.

Step #3: Execute

First, take an honest look at those extraneous items we talked about last week.  In deciding what to do with these items, you have two options:

1.     Do you really want to pay to pack, load, unload, unpack, organize and maintain these items?  If that thought alone seems absurd, then set the items aside to sell or donate.  Choose a spacious location, you may be adding more to that pile than you think.

2.     If you do need to keep some of these items, will this ‘stuff’ enhance or diminish your home in the eyes of a potential buyer?  If it’s not going to help, set it aside to pack now.

Now it’s time for what we call ‘the storm before the calm,’ because getting organized often involves making a mess first.  In other words, it's time to start sorting.

There are two ways to begin sorting: with broad categories or by room.

1.     Broad categories:  In a central location, gather categories from around the home.  Vases, décor, pictures frames, and candles are good places to start.  Reviewing one category at a time may help you realize that you don’t need eighty-three candles when you only use eight.  Also, packing like items together makes decorating easier at the new home where you can ‘shop’ from your existing décor which is already grouped together. Now is the time to let go of the items you no longer need, by donating or consigning.

2.     Room by room: Let go of any items you don’t want to take to your new home.  This doesn't just include the buried-under-the-bed items, but also everything that’s been sitting out around the house.  Do you need to keep all the books on your bookshelves if you’ve already read them?  Is there a desk drawer filled with two dozen pens that don’t work?  Are the extra sheets from your college bed ever actually going to be used again?  If not, let them go.

2.5  When you get to the pantry and medicine cabinets, don’t forget to look at expiration dates.  Reviewing and tossing expired items should be routine, but if there were ever a time to clear out stock, it’s now.

Once everything is sorted and edited, keep everything separated by category.  Like we mentioned above, packing like items together makes unpacking unbelievably easier.  Is it going to be aggravating in the meantime, living with piles lining the rooms before the packing begins?  Of course it is.  But sorting is an integral part of the organizing process, don’t undo all the work you’ve done so far.

Now’s also the time to begin setting up each space before the packing starts.  Assembling boxes, assigning designated packing areas, and creating signs that clearly state how boxes should be labeled are all small steps that go a long way.

Get comfortable with being uncomfortable.  If moves were comfortable, we wouldn’t be writing this in the first place.  There is, however, a big difference between being uncomfortable and panicking.  And you’re getting organized first, so you don’t fall into the latter category.  Go ahead and check ‘panic’ off the list, you're good without it.

Need the entire article asap? Contact us at and put “Move Blog” in the subject line. We’ll send it all to you now.

Prepare for a Fresh Start

We kicked off “Move Monday” last week with the first in our new series, The Less-Stressed Move. As a professional organizing firm, we’ve managed more moves than we can count, with more variables and unique life situations than you can imagine. With each move, we add to our repertoire of best practices, and implement new processes, products & ideas.

Last Monday we covered Step #1: Plan in Advance (scroll down to view the article). This week’s focus is Step #2: Prepare for a Fresh Start!

STEP #2: Prepare for a fresh start!

With the right mindset, moving can be the opportunity for a clean slate. This often means paring down, and can only be done by re-discovering every knick-knack, re-gifted gag gift, and souvenir sports towel tucked away in the recesses of the garage, attic, and, yes, the dreaded storage under the bed.  You may find things long since forgotten, and things you don’t remember acquiring in the first place.  In most cases, if you haven’t missed these items before, you won’t miss them in the future.  At one point, you loved your 8-track system and portable CD player, but you have a smartphone now.  And that Gandalf-style wooden staff you found while hiking last year?  It made for a cool Instagram moment, but it doesn’t need to hang out in your new garage.  We love retro music playing devices and Lord of the Rings as much as the next person, but for the sake of moving, let them go.

We're not asking you to throw out everything you own, just to stop and think about what needs to stay, and what needs to go.  But how do you transform full closets and crowded cabinets to a clean slate? Next week in Step #3, we’ll help you formulate a new plan: sort, edit, and execute.

Need the entire article asap? Contact us at and put “Move Blog” in the subject line. We’ll send it all to you now.

The Less-Stressed Move

Regardless of the size of your home, how many times you’ve moved, or how many miles you’re moving, moves bring stress.  In the list of “top five major life stressors," moving is just behind death of a loved one and separation from a significant other.  That being said, moving isn’t to be taken lightly.  Even if you’re fortunate enough to have a team of packers, movers and maybe professional organizers, moving creates a complete upheaval of your life in both a physical and mental way.

As a professional organizing firm, one segment of our company is move management. One of our roles then, as professional organizers, is to coordinate moves. Often these are large-scale moves with tight time constraints and numerous people involved. Our goal is to manage the move in the most efficient, most functional and least stressful way possible.  If you don’t have a team of organizers on which to rely, we’re sharing our move preparation steps in hopes that it will help you have a smoother transition. Or, you can always call us…

For the next 6 Mondays, we will expound on each step. This week is step one.

STEP #1: Plan in advance

The adage “time is money” is never more true than during moves. Lack of preparation will only increase costs and stress. Stress is often caused by sudden or changing deadlines and the resulting sense of urgency and unexpected costs. Giving yourself as much time as possible, months even, will ensure your move will be less stressful and less costly.  We promise, when moving week arrives, you (and your budget) will be glad you did.

Here are some prompts to start that planning process:

1.     Define your goal: Upsize? Downsize? Be near a school district? Take advantage of market? Build?

2.     Determine time constraints: When do you want to be out of the current home? In a new home? Are you open to an interim rental home? Are there certain dates when you should avoid moving, like April for a CPA? How quickly is the market moving so you’re ready as it’s ready? Setting these parameters will help you work backward from the date you want to be in your new home, and help as you begin to contact potential movers, vendors, realtors, etc. The more notice you are able to give, the more likely your vendor of choice and preferred dates will be available.

3.     Determine how to move: Is this a DIY move? Hire a professional moving company? Corporate move? “Hire puka and you go to the beach” move? If so, contact the vendors now.

4.     Selling your house? Will you be contacting a realtor? For sell by owner? Need a pre-listing inspection? Repairs? Updates? Contact your realtor and get their expert advice— the sooner the better.

5.     Create a Budget: Setting a budget ahead of time will determine what tasks can be delegated versus what you will need to handle. Advance planning will allow you to compare services to price and update the budget as necessary. It may also encourage you in Step #2: Prepare for a Fresh Start, as you let things go and realize that in moving, less is less. Less stuff = less cost = less stress.

Join us next Monday for Step #2: Prepare for a Fresh Start!

Need the entire article asap? Contact us at and enter “Move Blog” in the subject line. We’ll send the entire article to you this week.