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Spring Moving Tips

By Silvia Wei

Moving home has been acknowledged as one of the most stressful experiences in life (ranking up there with death of a loved one, divorce, a major illness, and job loss). Yet, as almost a third of our nation are renters, it means a lot of people are likely to experience ‘moving day mania’ on more than one occasion.

And it seems the cost of getting the professionals in to help is skyrocketing. According to data from, removalists charged the highest hourly fees in the country for all trades and household service professionals in FY18. With an average hourly rate of $93.24 (up 3.04 per cent on FY17), removalists charged even more than electricians and plumbers. Of course, the charges reflect the fact that removalists need to be fully insured (i.e. public liability plus cover in the event of a client’s possessions being lost or damaged, and cover for the vehicle) and that it isn’t just one person on the truck.

So chances are many of your tenants will be organising the move to their new rental themselves. Why not pass on these 18 ‘moving hacks’ to help ease the stress?

  1. Label/colour code all boxes based on the room in which they belong (bedroom, kitchen, bathroom etc.), marking them on the top and the sides – then prioritise the boxes with numbers based on the ones you will need immediately. Write the contents of each box on the box, or on an inventory list.
  2. Put all the essentials you’ll need as soon as you move in in a ‘first night’ box or kits, think –                                                           –  Weekend kit: Include all the things you would need if you left town for a few days such as clothing, toiletries and medications.   –  Bed and bath kit: Basics like toilet paper, towels, and sheets.                                                                                                       –  First aid kit: A small stock of band-aids, painkillers etc.                                                                                                                   – Toolkit: Pack what you’ll need to open boxes and assemble furniture, e.g. a Stanley knife, Allen/hex key (for all the Ikea furniture!), screwdriver, scissors etc.                                                                                                                                                   –  Munchie kit: Pack snacks, bottled water, and a few pantry items for the next morning like coffee.                                                 –  Cleaning kit: Have a few rubbish bags, paper towels, and multipurpose spray cleaner on hand.
  3. Put essential appliances (kettle, toaster etc.) in a laundry basket so you can put them in the kitchen as soon as you arrive.
  4. Put fitted sheets on both sides of mattresses when carrying and transporting.
  5. Unpack bedding first and make the beds so you have somewhere to sleep as soon as you call it a day.
  6. Leave clothes on hangers and cover with rubbish bags so they can be transported flat and simply re-hung in closets.
  7. Roll clothes instead of folding. Stuff shoes with small items to maximise space.
  8. Instead of emptying drawers, cling wrap them to transport them full and simply put them back into the unit.
  9. Take a photo of the set-up of electronic equipment (TV entertainment systems, sound system, computers etc.) to use as a reference when putting it all back together – and store all the cables in toilet rolls to stop them getting tangled.
  10. Prevent breaks by covering stemware with socks and put paper plates, coffee filters or tea towels between ceramic plates, bowls etc. Pack them into boxes vertically instead of on top of one another.
  11. Wrap breakables in clothes, towels and sheets. Don’t forget to mark the boxes ‘fragile’.
  12. Fill up pots and pans with spice containers, dish towels, and other kitchen items to save space. Use rubber bands to keep pots and lids together. Put knives inside an old oven mitt and secure with a rubber band.
  13. Prevent scratches or scuffs on your kitchen dining set by draping sheets and pillowcases over the table and chairs. Secure them with rubber bands if you can.
  14. Cover all bottles of liquid with plastic wrap before screwing on the lids. Keep them in a separate box when transporting.
  15. Use suitcases with wheels to transport heavy items like books or kitchenware.
  16. Snap-lock sandwich bags in varying sizes are useful for keeping small items – like the screws to put back into furniture – together.
  17. Cut handles into boxes to make them easier to carry.
  18. Put all of your important documents in plastic bags to protect them, then separate them in file folders or boxes so you know where they are at all times.
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