Getting all your furniture, clothes, kitchenware, electronics and valuables from one place to another is no simple task - whether you've hired professionals or are managing the move yourself.
The specifics of each move are different. Moving down the block, from one studio apartment to another, is less complicated than moving from a 3,000-square-foot home in New York to a similarly sized house in California. No matter how or where you're moving, preparation and careful planning will make the process smoother.
1. Sort, sell, donate or toss
Why move what you don't need or use? During the days and weeks leading up to your move, mercilessly sort through every closet and drawer. Organize a moving sale, donate items to a charity like Goodwill, The Arc or The Salvation Army, or list them via an online reuse/recycle-type website. Throwing things away is OK, too; some items will simply be outdated or too worn to be of much use to others.
2. Make lists, check them twice
Organization is the key to any good move. Make lists of all the people and institutions you need to contact before moving: schools, utility companies, government offices, subscriptions you need to change, etc. You'll need another list that includes the names of everyone who needs to know your new address, from family members to co-workers. Perhaps most important of all: make a list of things that will be moved, room by room. If you've hired a moving company, the movers will work with you to put together an inventory. If you're moving your own stuff, consider getting an app like Moving Day for the iPhone, which allows you to build a complete inventory and create barcodes for your boxes that you can scan with your phone and document damaged items.