Presented by Linda Isom, Professional Organizer
Here are twelve tips to completely unpacking an entire house without losing your sanity.
1. Assess the new home space beforehand.
a. Take a look at your space before you move in to determine what is different from your
previous home’s space. A spiral notebook is great for this.
b. Make a list of what you plan to put where. Mapping out the space is also helpful.
c. Once you have done this you will have a better idea of where you will need to have the boxes moved and how you may need to organize your packing if that is still an option.
2. Sort like items together in the rooms where you intend to store them.
a. Ideally you would have the items sorted before you pack.
b. If not, no worries, just start sorting and make it work.
3. Organize one room at a time.
a. A common problem is that we don’t stay on task when moving. There are so many things happening at once that it is easy to go from task to task, never completing any of them. Stay on task.
4. Determine what containers and storage bins can be reused in the new space before you go out and spend additional funds for new containers you may not need.
a. Don’t go out and buy new containers till you know what you have with your own inventory.
b. Think outside the box when it comes to repurposing containers, you may be surprised what can go where, and what can be reused.
5. Purge as you go.
a. Occasionally there is not the time to purge, eliminate clutter and unwanted things while you are packing things to move.
b. Take this time while sorting, to purge things you no longer want or need.
c. Have a box handy for donations and a garbage bag to hold all the excess paper and bubble wrap as you unpack.
6. Measure before purchasing containers.
a. Save time and money by purchasing the right containers the first time.
b. Always measure twice before writing the measurements down.
7. When each room is completed, collapse all boxes and remove all garbage and debris from the room.
a. Give your morale a boost by being able to see completed rooms and keeping unnecessary clutter out of your way.
8. Once you have decided placement of things…Assign everything a home.
a. LABEL EVERYTHING whether it is with handwritten labels or a fancy label machine, labeling everything gives clarity to each item’s proper place and insures an easy way for things to end up back where they belong.
a. In the first few weeks in the new home you will find what does and does not work for you and your new space.
b. Expect to re-arrange a few things as you actually “live,” in the space.
10. Set aside time each day dedicated to unpacking.
a. The average person can only go through thirty-five boxes in an eight hour period. Plan accordingly. You may be a superhero at unpacking, but don’t stress yourself out by planning for a superhuman effort.
11. Organize first, decorate last
a. Although it is extremely tempting to “nest” in your home first and decorate, you will thank yourself later for taking the time to completely organize and out things away before you decide what to hang up.
12. Pace yourself.
a. Rome wasn’t built in a day; don’t expect your home to be unpacked and organized in a day either.
b. Be consistent and patient and before you know it your home will be what you want it to be.
c. Focus on completing each task. With any move there will be lots of distractions. Remember your focus and stay with each task until it is completed.
Send me your favorite unpacking tips to my blog! www.clearingspacebydesign.blogspot.com.