The first days in a new home are full of anticipation, excitement and exhaustion from the moving process — but the move isn’t complete just yet. Now begins the unpacking process, which many people view as one of the most tedious parts of moving. Fortunately, unpacking doesn’t have to be dreadful.
Systematically approaching the unpacking process can make it easier, more efficient and perhaps even enjoyable. This room-by-room unpacking guide will ensure your next unpacking experience moves seamlessly, so you can relax and enjoy your new home.
Prepare for Unpacking While Packing
A stress-free unpacking process begins while packing. Pack room by room and clearly label each box with the room name. Place like items together, so you can unpack the box all at once in a single place.
An example is to pack all the items for the linen closet together, so you can place that box (or boxes) in the linen closet and unload all of the contents in one area. Be careful not to mix items from separate rooms in the same box, as this can confuse you when unpacking.
Create an Essentials Box
An essentials box is a critical part of every move. It includes all the items you need to live comfortably while unpacking.
Common items to include in an essentials box include:
- Prescription medications
- Several changes of clothing for each family member
- Phone/computer chargers
- Enough plates, cups and utensils for the family to eat and drink together
A new house means a fresh start. Clean your new home thoroughly before unloading anything from the moving truck. Consider hiring a cleaning company ahead of the move to relieve additional stress.
Keep Distractions Separate
It’s easy to get bored or distracted while unpacking. Box distractions like tablets, video games and the TV together and forbid yourself access to them until unpacking is complete. Keeping this box until last prevents procrastination while motivating you to get the job done more quickly.
Place Boxes in the Correct Rooms
Unload boxes from the moving truck and place them directly in the correct rooms. Dropping them all in the garage or kitchen will make unpacking appear much more overwhelming. It will also slow down the process, as you will have to move the boxes into their correct rooms later.
Start With Furniture and Large Items
Make a list of rooms in the home and where you want furniture and other large items to go before you make the move. Unload these items first and place them in the rooms where they will stay.
Take time to rearrange furniture items and get them situated where you want before continuing. It’s much easier to move furniture before shelves and cabinets are full.
Unpack Rooms in Order of Importance
Different families have varying uses for each room, so there is no set order to unpack rooms. Those who don’t know where to start can begin with the bathroom, as the entire family will use it throughout the unpacking process. A shower also feels incredible after a long day of moving and unpacking.
Next, consider unpacking any bedrooms where family members will be sleeping the same night. Guest rooms can wait. Start by making the beds, then unpacking clothing and other essential items. Parents may be surprised by how capable kids are of unpacking and organizing their rooms.
Adults who work from home may need to prioritize the home office, while other families may move on to the kitchen, living room and dining room next. Closets, storage spaces and guest rooms typically come last, as they don’t house essential items.
Enjoy Your New Home
There is no denying the mountain of boxes in the moving van can be intimidating. However, an organized packing process can result in stress-free, efficient unpacking. Move from room to room throughout your home, and you may be surprised at how quickly your new home becomes unpacked and organized.
Now it’s finally time to open the distractions box, order take-out and enjoy your new surroundings.
AUTHOR BIO: Adam Warner is Content Strategist Manager at Moving of America. Previously, Warner wrote short stories across different magazines.