Establishing a Reasonable and Successful Moving Timeline
How to plan and organize your move efficiently with a practical moving timeline
There are a lot of steps and tasks involved in planning a move. Most people underestimate the amount of time it actually takes. Moving may seem as straightforward as packing your belongings into boxes, loading them in a truck, and going. However, when it comes time to actually do those things, you may be overwhelmed, disorganized, and short on time. We all have busy lives, establishing a reasonable moving timeline can help reduce stress and manage expectations. You’ll have more peace of mind knowing you’re not forgetting anything important and that everything is properly taken care of on your moving day.
The 2-month rule
People’s biggest mistake when organizing a moving timeline is not giving themselves enough time. Many people think you can plan and execute a move in less than a month. While this is definitely possible, you’ll be significantly less frazzled and overwhelmed if you give yourself more time. A good rule of thumb is to give yourself at least two months if you can. Booking a moving company, sorting through your belongings, packing everything correctly, and making additional moving arrangements takes time. If you’re someone with a hectic schedule, try to give yourself even more time. You may only have short time blocks or limited days to allocate to your checking things off your to-do list.
So, now that you’ve given yourself plenty of time to plan, organize and pack, you’ll need to set some deadlines. You can give yourself all the time in the world. Still, without strict deadlines on your moving timeline, nothing stops you from leaving everything until the last minute. For example, organize your tasks by room and set a date for when you’d like to finish with each room. Set deadlines for booking a moving company, professional cleaners, pet sitters and babysitters and details that can be difficult to arrange last minute.
An example of a reasonable moving timeline
If you’re having a hard time making your own moving timeline, here’s an example of a two-month timeline that you could follow:
In the first four weeks:
- Start cleaning and organizing each room of your home
- Declutter and donate things you no longer need
- Acquire packing supplies
- Book a moving company
- Sign your new lease or close your home sale
- Start packing items that you won’t need in the near future
During weeks 5-7:
- Make sure all paperwork is signed, get the keys to your new home
- Do the bulk of your packing in this time, but leave out the essentials
- Figure out what can/cannot go in the moving truck and make necessary arrangements for those items
- Solidify travel plans (if moving long-distance)
- Disassemble your furniture in week 7
- Have your mail forwarded to your new address
- Arrange for your utilities to be transferred or turned on at your new home
The week of your move:
- Confirm your dates and times with your moving company or truck rental
- Finish packing up. Keep a box or bag aside that has clothes and other essentials you’ll need in the first few days
- Handle any last-minute issues
- Do a final clean of your house
You should always aim to have mostly everything completed a week before your moving day. You’ll have that extra week to prepare yourself and your family for the move, and the buffer time will come in handy should any last-minute issues arise.