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If you are like most people, you probably view moving as an unpleasant, stressful and time-consuming experience which often results in broken dishes and sore muscles. The Northrop Team would like to make the transition a little easier for you. With a little care and planning, you and your belongings will both arrive at your new home in mint condition. The checklist below will help you prepare for your move.

Purchase/Gather Packing Supplies. If you are a do-it-yourself mover, you will need to gather packing materials including boxes, tape, scissors, bubble wrap, packing peanuts, newspapers and blankets. The produce department at your local grocery store is a good source for large, sturdy boxes for your non-fragile items. Your local beer store is also a good source for small boxes. The boxes that wine bottles come in are great for packing glasses and stemware since they come with cardboard dividers. Suitcases and gym bags are also good options for packing clothes, shoes and other items.

Discard, Sell or Donate Unwanted Items. Go through each room of your house and sort through your belongings. Place all of the unused items into one of three piles - (1) Discard, (2) Sell, or (3) Donate. This will force you to do the cleaning you’ve probably been putting off and will result in fewer items to pack. Throw out the items in the “discard” pile. Hold a yard sale to get rid of the items you want to sell. After the yard sale is over, gather the items that did not sell, add it to the pile of items to “donate” and give it all to charity. Most donations are tax-deductible. 

Begin Packing. Many people wait until the last minute to start packing. You can make packing easier by doing it a little at a time. Get a head start by boxing items that are not frequently used such as books, linen, and seasonal clothing. Pack one room at a time and try not to mix items from different rooms in one box. Pack heavy items such as books in small boxes. Pack clothes in wardrobe boxes to save ironing time later. Clearly label each box, including the Room it goes in and a brief description of the contents.

Tips on how to pack specific items.

Change Your Address. Contact the post office with your new address and the date it becomes effective. Address changes can be done online simply by going to the U.S. Postal Service website. Remember to contact your employer, creditors, banks, insurance carriers, newspapers, magazines, physicians, and schools with your address change. Do not forget to change your address with the Motor Vehicle Administration.

Notify Family and Friends. Inform your family and friends of your new address (and phone number, if applicable).

Clean Your Old Residence. Leave your old residence as you would like to find it. Vacuum the carpet, sweep & mop the floor, wipe off counters and stoves, clean sinks, tubs and toilets, and wipe out the refrigerator. Be sure to double-check cabinets, drawers, closets, storage rooms, the washer and dryer, and the refrigerator to make sure nothing is left behind before you leave the house for the last time.

Prepare Moving Day Kits. Since the majority of your property will be in boxes, it is important to remember to set aside the items you will need on the day of the move. This should include a change of clothes, a towel, prescription drugs, toothbrush and toothpaste, toilet paper, and your toiletries. You should also set aside moving-related items such as tools, scissors/utility knife, tape, trash bags, paper towels, a flashlight, a first aid kit, and aspirin. Other items to have handy on moving day include paper plates, plastic utensils and cups, snacks and beverages.