No Really, I am. Ask Kara Noel from Eli’s Lids, in fact she requested this post because she knows of Beautiful Wife and my mad moving skills. Did you know that Beautiful Wife and I have actually moved 7 times together (including when we first moved in together.) Yup it’s true, mostly in and around Orange County, but one fateful (read: poor decision) move up to Sacramento.
Every time we’ve moved, we have done it ourselves, a la U-haul, and with the exception of the move to Sacramento, we have never spent more than a hundred bucks to move. This time will be no different, our initial estimate? $75. Yup, that’s it, we even thought about paying movers to pack and move us, and then we saw $700 estimates, and said “What did I do with that U-Haul number?” So how do we do it? Or more specifically; How do we do it with out losing our sanity?
It’s easy really, if you follow some easy steps:
1. Start early, borrow boxes: Ask your friends, family, and whoever you can ask to raid their work and homes for boxes. This time we just happened to have a friend who just finished a move and got all of their boxes (Thanks Patti and Ralph!) Once you have the boxes, start packing, anything that you don’t use every day. Pack it away. The picture at right is 70% of our house, packed 2 weeks early
2. Rent the biggest truck you can, this one we’ve learned the hard way. At U-haul the difference between a 16 foot truck and a 26 foot truck is ten dollars. Now, I’m a bit of a glutton for punishment, and have on more than one occasion packed a 2 bedroom house in the 16 footer, but I don’t recommend it, unless you are really good at Tetris.
3. Eat yourself out of house and home. Specifically, eat as many perishable items out of your fridge as possible. Those pickles you’ve been saving for your next pregnancy? Time to eat ’em. Refrigerators are hard enough to move as it is.
4. Pack all of your pictures, shelves, etc. before the day of your move. This will give you time to patch hole and paint and not have to worry about coming back (this is especially good advice if you live in a rental.)
5. Take the day off before you move. Take apart any electronic equipment, and get those ready to go. Load your car up with all the clothing you aren’t going to wear the next day, and take apart any furniture that you can (beds, cribs, etc.) Pull all the drawers out of your dressers, that way it lighten’s then dressers, but also means you don’t have to pack those clothes in a box.
6. Beg your friends to help. Begging is important, especially when you have moved as many times as we have, your credit may be close to running out. Bribe with the generally accepted moving payment: Pizza and Beer.
7. On moving day. Get the truck early, as early as you can, so you can be parked and ready to go when those of your friend who haven’t mutinied show up to help. Also, have donuts and coffee, the breakfast of moving champions.
8. Use blankets, sheets, etc. To provide protection for valuables, both in boxes, and in the truck. For example, in one of the boxes Beautiful Wife’s jewelry box is protected by an old pair of Dickie’s work pants.
9. If you have to move in the rain, run out and get some tarps. Because moving day waits for no man.
10. Keep a sense of humor about you. This is probably the most important thing I can tell you. In fact, here’s an example: