Moving to a new apartment is always stressful. It’s best to just accept that the process is going to stress you out and do what you can to make the transition as smooth as possible. Here are some tips to help you with that:
1. Pare Down
Even if you are moving to an apartment of comparable size to where you’re living now, it’s best to pare down your belongings. Go through everything. If it’s broken, toss it out. If you haven’t used it or even touched it in the last twelve months, get rid of it. If you own four of the same thing, keep the one that is in the best condition and get rid of the rest.
Paring down helps you save space in the new place. It also makes moving day a lot easier to deal with. The fewer things you have to pack up, move and unpack, the better for everybody’s stress level.
Hint: Sell the things you’re getting rid of in a yard sale to earn extra money to help finance your move. Donate whatever doesn’t sell (if you donate to a charity, the donation can be written off on your taxes).
2. Store Stuff Off Site
Renting local storage can help make the transition from one space to another much simpler. A storage space is a great place to put the things that you know you aren’t going to use every day but that you want to keep. Holiday decorations, luggage, off season clothing, files, etc—they can all be kept in a storage unit (preferably one with climate control).
Storage units also make it easier for you to move into a smaller (and therefore cheaper) space than you are currently occupying.
3. Get Your Utilities Set Up Ahead of Time
You want to give at least a week’s advance notice to your electric company and gas company that you will be moving in and will need the power to be turned on. You might need to give at least two weeks’ notice to your cable/internet provider.
Make sure you check with your apartment manager before you do this. The complex/building might have a specific provider that they require all residents to use.
4. Get a Post Office Box
One of the realities of apartment living is just how nomadic it can be. If you’ve got a short lease or are only living in an apartment while you hunt for a house, getting a Post Office Box can be a lifesaver. You can have your mail forwarded there and then, no matter where you live within that city; you can keep the same address. It saves quite a lot of hassle.
5. Pack for Weight Not Space
Remember that your boxes are going to be moved by humans—possibly you and a few friends. Make them easy to carry. You can always make extra trips. You cannot always get your arms or back replaced.
Moving is never fun. Even if you’re looking forward to the new space, the process of getting there is going to stress you out. Using these tips can help alleviate a little bit of that.