Moving Out for the First Time: 10 Useful Tips

Moving out of your family home for the first time can be stressful, difficult, and time-consuming, especially if you don't plan well. You must plan on renting a moving truck and know where you’ll stay after moving out, as well as how you’ll deal with your current car.

This process is even trickier for college students moving out or young professionals moving to a new city to start a new job.

We're here to provide 10 helpful first-time moving-out tips. Keep these tips in mind, and your moving process will go smoother than you think.

How Can You Set Up Your Move Beforehand?

The best way to minimize moving day stress is to set yourself up for success beforehand. Here are three ways you can do just that, whether you are a college student heading to university or looking to move to a new state or city in pursuit of a job opportunity.

Secure Housing and Income

Start by ensuring you have a place to live and a solid income stream you can start receiving ASAP. Moving to a new city or state without a rental property or university dorm room ready to welcome you is never a good idea.

Call apartment managers, real estate agents, or your college’s residential advisor to find housing before doing anything else.

Regarding income, you should line up a job before moving or have a way to earn money quickly when you get there, such as through remote work, freelancing, or something similar.

Having these things prepped before moving out for the first time will reduce the stress you’ll feel upon arrival.

Forward Your Mail

Don’t forget to call the post office and tell them about your new address. Furthermore, you’ll also need to contact every organization that sends you mail and inform them of the address change.

Let them know where you’ll be moving and direct your mail to that address for the foreseeable future.

Of course, the odds are some of your mail will still show up at your previous house for a while after moving. Just let your parents know, or leave a note for the new tenants asking them to forward the mail to your new address.

Save Up for the Move

Moving is expensive, even if you don’t bring a lot of stuff. To that end, you’ll do yourself and your wallet a favor by saving up for several months before moving day arrives.

Try to tuck away a few hundred bucks every month at a minimum. That way, you’ll always have enough money to pay for gas, snacks, and hotel rooms across the country.

Again, make sure you know how much moving to your new home will cost before heading out.

How Can You Make Your Move Easier?

On moving day itself, you can make the entire process more leisurely — and maybe even a little fun — if you keep these tips in mind.

Downsize While Packing

Remember that you don’t have to pack everything you currently own or have in your home right now. Many people make moving easier on themselves by downsizing while packing.

For example, if you go through your closet and notice a bunch of clothes you never wear, either because they don't look good anymore or because you grew out of them, consider giving them away rather than dragging them along with you. Downsizing while packing:

  • Requires you to pack fewer things
  • Requires fewer boxes
  • Allows you to sell unused items for a bit of extra cash or give unused items to the needy

Remember, if it’s not good enough to keep, odds are you can afford to get rid of it. Each thing you downsize by selling or giving away is one last thing you have to bring with you.

Label and Organize Your Boxes

Speaking of boxes, carefully label and organize every box you load into your moving truck. Labeling and organizing your packages will make it easier for you to unload things sequentially and logically upon arrival to your new home or dorm room.

Plus, if you hire movers, labeling your boxes gives them the information they need to avoid tossing containers with fragile items in the back of the van.

Recruit Help

If you don’t want to hire movers to save a bit of cash, you can recruit help from your friends, family members, or even people around the neighborhood if you know them well enough. Loading things into your moving van will take all day, even if you try to downsize and travel light.

You might also ask your parents to help you unload your stuff at your new home or dorm room if you are moving out for the first time. Recruiting help is a great way to make the moving process fun since you can converse with your helpers while reducing any moving day stress.

Ship Your Car

Don’t pile extra worry upon your shoulders by trying to drive your car and having someone else drive a moving van across the country simultaneously. Instead, opt to ship your vehicle with a car hauling service like Carvaygo.

Shipping your car is easy, convenient, and reliable. If your car is nice or you want to ensure it arrives without wear and tear from inclement weather or dust, choose enclosed car hauling. It’s a little pricier, but it’s well worth it.

What Should You Do After Your Move?

Of course, moving isn’t over when you finally arrive at your final destination. You’ll then need to unpack everything and set yourself up for your new life. Fortunately, we’ve also got a few tips for this stage of the process.

Take It One Box at a Time

Don’t look at the pile of boxes in the back of your moving van and feel overwhelmed. Instead, take it one box at a time. Move one box into the room where most contents will be unloaded. Then proceed to the next box.

As a side tip, don’t try to unpack your boxes until everything is out of the moving truck. That way, you can turn the moving truck into its rental station and avoid paying for an extra day of renting the vehicle.

Downsize Again

It might also be wise to downsize your possessions once more in this stage of the moving experience. Many of us are so focused on getting everything packed up when loading a moving van/truck that we don’t think about downsizing properly.

But once we start unloading those boxes with countless knickknacks, trinkets, or unused clothing, we can see how much of that stuff we don't need. If your dorm room is a little smaller than you're used to, try to give away unused things as you unpack them.

If you can find a good Salvation Army or giveaway place nearby, just keep some of your moving boxes intact so you can easily haul all that to-be-donated stuff.

Get Creative

This part of moving is fun. You get to decorate an entirely new space and enjoy some personal time.

So don’t be afraid to get creative when unpacking. If you’re moving out for the first time, you might be overwhelmed with the sudden freedom and choices available.

But remember, your dorm room or new apartment/house is your space. You get to decorate it and place all your items exactly how you like them.

Have fun with it. String up some lights around your dorm room, put up your favorite decorations or posters, and consider getting creative by purchasing some new furniture so you can store your clothes and other items without having to keep them in boxes for too long.

The Bottom Line

Moving out for the first time can be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be. If you follow the above tips, you’ll plan ahead of time, have a set game plan, and know where all your stuff is through every step of the process, including your car.

When it comes to shipping your car to a new city or across the entire country, Carvaygo can help. Our car hauling service is well-reviewed around the nation. You can rely on us to get your vehicle from place to place in pristine condition. Contact us today to learn more.

Standard Forward Mail | USPS
How Much You Should Save Before You Move Out | Capital One
11 Things to Do Before You Downsize Your Home, From a Moving Expert | Business Insider

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