Moving to a new location across town or across the country requires a great deal of planning and preparation. Imagine the prospect of having to move at the last minute without being able to plan for it in advance. Everything you would normally do in a planned move is still on your list; you just need to accelerate the process. You need to:
- Find a new place to live
- Locate schools for any children you may have
- Find work; if move is not work-related
- Decide what you must take and what you can live without
- Register with your new municipality
- And more
The task sounds daunting, but there are things you can do in advance to ease the stress if you are faced with a last-minute move. Here are a few tips:
List Your Life Priorities
It may sound strange, but it is always a good idea to create a list of things that are most important in your life, regardless of how long or short you’ve lived at your current address. Having a list of the major and minor items you must have in any move keeps you focused on the task at hand. The level of detail you go into is up to you, but having such a list ready will make a surprise move much easier to take on.
Work Your Network
Once you’ve been given the news that you need to relocate, reach out to your network of friends, coworkers, and family members. They can help you with research on your new location, and they might know someone in the area who can help you. Make a connection in advance of your move if possible.
Focus On The Essential Rooms First
For most people, the kitchen and bedroom are the most important areas of any place you live. Start listing the items from these rooms that you must have when you research your new location. Doing this will also help you identify the items you’re ready to part with should you need to move in a hurry.
As with any move, packing room by room and marking the boxes clearly is a must. You don’t need to add any more confusion – and stress – to your last-minute move. As you go through each room, designate an area of the things that can be discarded and another area of items you want to donate. Put trash bags in every room to collect these items once you’ve packed your essentials.
Another packing tip is to leave your clothes on hangers when packing. You shouldn’t spend time folding your clothes neatly unless there are items that require special handling. Put those in a separate box and label that box clearly.
Pack A Change Of Clothes Separately
When you get to your new location, you’ll likely need to change clothes and to freshen up. Include any medications and toiletries, as well as any important papers like vehicle titles, tax filings, passports, and other identifying documents you will need in your new location.
Have Snacks On Hand
The physical and mental stress of a move will take its toll on you. Have plenty of energizing snacks for your entire entourage – including those who may be around to help you pack that don’t require refrigeration or utensils to eat or prepare.
Plan For The Unloading
Just as with packing up, having a plan on unpacking once your items arrive in their new location is just as important. This is another area where your network or local contact can help.
Throw Out The Trash
One of the last things you should do before you depart is throw out the trash that you collected in each room during the packing phase. This will also make sure that any items you’ve marked for donation aren’t accidentally thrown out.
Moving to a new location can be life-changing. Last-minute moves are one of the most stressful experiences anyone can have. It may sound paradoxical to “plan for the unplanned,” but preparedness in any aspect of life allows you to focus on the important things. Taking the above steps can help you stay focused and make the best of your move.