How to be super organized with your move

If you're anything like me, you start the moving process with the best of intentions and you swear that every step along the way, you will be organized. You make a list, you vow to pack a certain number of boxes every single day, you note that you need to change your utilities and your address with banks and credit card companies. When it comes to pairing your ideas with actions, though, things fall a little short.

For those like us, let's just say thank goodness good movers come equipped for nearly every contingency. Let's say you haven't gotten around to packing anything, your mover can do that. Changing your address be done in minutes online, but no one wants to get to that point. Here are some of the best ways to be prepared, truly prepared, when your movers arrive:

1. Gather moving estimates

It's best to arrange approximately 3-4 estimates before the move, but price comparison isn't the only reason. Your moving consultant should have a wealth of knowledge, including how many boxes you need, if you plan on packing your own items. They can even sell you the boxes and arrange to have them delivered to you. If you choose to buy boxes elsewhere, that's fine too.

2. Create a packing plan and stick to it

Divide the number of boxes you need to pack by the number of days left before the move. Aim for higher than that number every day. Unless you are home all day, it's unlikely you'll pack more than 5-10 per day without help. Don't be ashamed to admit to your mover that you need their help, but it's best if you notify them in advance so they can allot the time and resources and update your estimate. Fear not, though, even without notice, your movers will be ready.

3. Label everything.

Stock up on Sharpies. Use bread clips to label electronics. Label each box with the type of item packed and the room it belongs in.

4. Change all your addresses has a step-by-step guide to changing your address. Most can be done online and most changes are immediate. Still, allow a few days for the Post Office change to take effect. Take note of all the bills you pay during the month just to make sure none get overlooked during the transition.

5. Make a list of things to take with you

Even if you are only moving across town, you want to take your important papers, valuable jewelry, cleaning supplies and propane tanks with you. If you are moving across country, pack a suitcase for each member of the family, along with some air mattresses and bedding.

6. Map out everything

This one may seem a little over the top, but it can save you a lot of headaches on moving day. Find out what size truck a mover will bring. If it's a local move, plan on 27 foot. If it's a long-distance move, plan on 53 feet. If a truck of such a size will not fit, let your mover know in advance. Your move may require a shuttle, which will add to the cost.

Pace out the steps to the front door from the truck. If movers will have to go more than a certain number of feet (generally between 50 and 100), you may be charged for a long-carry.

You should also map out each room. Put painter's tape down for each item of furniture. If something won't fit, it's best to know it before moving it. Having a clear idea of where to place furniture will potentially save a lot of time.

7. Arrange for someone to care for your children and pets on moving day

Unless your children are old enough to help, they will be in the way and they will be stressed out. Your pets will not only be stressed out, they risk being stepped on or escaping out the door. It's best to have everyone out of the way.

Featured image via Nick Rice/Flickr.