Unpacking tips immediately after the move

When the moving truck departs and it’s time to organize your new life, everyone has different priorities. For some, organizing and unpacking from the move fills them with a feeling with pep and sense of purpose. Some enjoy the anticipation that comes with packing the household, but dislike the monotony of unpacking at the new house. Whether you’re on the fringe or somewhere in between, a few helpful unpacking tips to make the final phase of moving more enjoyable.

Reorganize Systematically

First, know what you are unpacking with high priority areas. If needed, make an inventory list and keep a copy of it with rooms areas marked for each item. In a perfect world, boxing up items by room and need is best, so make sure to group priority items together both in the same box(es) and grouped in the area.

Start with the Necessities

You should have 2 to 3 boxes with the essentials; unpack these first. Often times, these are boxes that you should maintain care, custody, and control over. These are the essential items you need to keep your home running in the short term and/or items of high value and necessity. If you didn’t designate a box or two for the essentials, quickly search for boxes that contain whatever you need to get by for at least a couple of nights. These items will normally include day to day items. Items such as basic toiletries, medications, books, and paperwork containing key addresses and telephone numbers.

Then, onto the kitchen…

If you’ve marked or labeled your boxes correctly, locating and unpacking the kitchen essentials should be easy. Line the kitchen cabinets first if you have a chance; if not, take care of this when you have the time. If time is of the essence, unpack what you need, including pots and pans. Get the major appliances hooked up, and plug in any small appliances that will make your life a little easier—such as the coffee pot.

Set up the bedrooms and bathrooms next

Once the movers have set your beds up, get out the linens and sheets. In one box or tub, put fresh linens for each bed. With this done you’ll be just about ready to spend the first night in your new place. When you can, make sure to map out where each item goes so the movers don’t have to move items around more than once. Installing shelving and closet organizing units first will make unpacking more productive and save you future work. Unpack the bathroom essentials, having a day or two worth of clean towels, toiletries, and other bathroom items. Again, start by unpacking the most important items—medications, body-care products, the shower curtain, and towels. But complete bathroom unpacking should be among the first things you do.

A few other unpacking tips

  • Get the essentials unpacked first. Have a box or two of essentials for each room/area in the house
  • Plan each room prior to moving if possible
  • Anticipate future needs, such as lining cabinet shelves or installing closet organizers—do it now, when it is most efficient.
  • Delegate priority unpacking areas to those that will use the area. This allows the whole family to pitch in.