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Relocating is a huge task. There are multiple steps, including finding a new place to call home, packing your belongings, moving your possessions, cleaning your old home, and unpacking once you’re ready to settle in. The process of packing, transporting, and unpacking everything you own can take months.

It’s easy to lose track of your possessions while you’re in the process of moving, which can compound the stress of moving. Delays can also affect your plans. For example, say you packed away your summer clothes and seasonal items because you were supposed to move at the start of spring, but a delay prevented you from taking possession until summer. As a result, you might need some of those items you packed up before you’re in your new home. Using the tips outlined here will help you keep your belongings organized during every stage of your move.

Develop a labeling system and stick to it.

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Create a labeling system and use it as soon as you start packing items. For example, you might opt to buy circular stickers in an assortment of colors and use the colors to identify the nature of the contents of each box. For example, you could use red for essential items, brown for seasonal items, and green for bathroom items.

A numbering system is also helpful. Numbering each box lets you keep a separate list on an electronic device or in a notebook. You can list out the items in each box, so you know precisely where to locate everything you own. When you use an electronic device, you can list the contents of each box in a spreadsheet or a comparable program. Then, once you have an electronic record, you can search for the item to identify its box.

Make your identifiers prominent and put them on a couple of sides of each box to ensure it’s easy to tell what’s inside. If you opt to use paper to write on, cover the paper thoroughly with packing tape to protect it from moisture or dirt. This way, you won’t have to worry about finding a box with a label you can’t read later.

Box up non-essential and seasonal items ahead of time.

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Don’t wait until you need to pack up your entire home to start boxing items. Once you have your labeling system in place, pack up non-essential items, like board games and seasonal items, such as holiday decorations. Start with items you know you won’t need for several months. During this stage, you may also pack up seasonal clothing.

Rent a storage facility.

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Look for self storage specials and find a storage facility that has storage rentals. Storage units come in various sizes, ensuring you can find an appropriate unit for your needs. In addition, storage units offer you a climate-controlled environment outside your current residence where you can secure your belongings. Storage Unit locator sites make it easy to find storage facilities in your area. Enter your city or zip code and review the list of self-storage facilities nearby.

It’s a good idea to rent a storage unit near your new home if you’re moving to the same city or state. This way, your storage facility will be close to your new location, making it convenient to access your possessions after you move. For example, say you’re moving from Annapolis to Rockville, Maryland. You won’t want to keep driving back to Annapolis after moving into your new home in Rockville. Also, having a storage unit near your Rockville home will make it easier to unpack after your move.

Hire professional movers.

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Professional movers, such as the experts at 495 Movers, can simplify every stage of the moving process. If you don’t want to deal with packing up your entire house, you can hire their team to box up all your belongings or pack up some of your items, such as breakables. They’ll assign you a move coordinator who’ll oversee all tasks, from packing your possessions to loading the moving van to transporting your possessions to your new house.

They’ll complete tasks according to your move schedule. The moving company will handle all the heavy lifting, so you don’t have to, and you won’t have to worry about driving a large moving vehicle through your new neighborhood, either.

With an effective labeling system in place, your move coordinator will know exactly where each box should go when the moving team begins unloading at your new house. This way, kitchen items won’t end up in the bathroom.

Create a labeling system and use it when you pack your possessions. Use professional moving services, such as storage facilities and movers, to simplify the moving process.

Dina Holtz