With most things in life – you never want to ‘settle’. You want to explore, grow, conquer and keep powering on. Except for moving…you just want to get it done, get on with your life, and NEVER do it again for a long time! If you want to get settled into your new space as quickly as possible – we understand. But we also know by experience and by statistics that un-packing takes TWICE as long as un-packing on average.
Before you panic, take a few moments to review our best suggestions for settling into your home, without simply settling. If you are going to spend all of that time un-packing, you may as well enjoy the result, right?
Start BIG. Before you are buried in boxes, take a moment to tour the location and installation of your appliances. Does the dishwasher actually ‘wash’? Is your dryer vented properly? Is there any appliance damage that needs to be reported – remember that insurance has limited time frames to make a claim!
Keep those receipts. Moving is expensive, and your tax expert may want to see if any of your expenses are eligible to be claimed on your next tax return. Before you cut the clutter – collect all receipts and keep them with your household accounting items (when you find them!).
Make a plan and a timeline. If you can, take a few days off of work to get acclimated to your new surroundings. Since this is not always possible, start room by room, and work through the essentials. You are going to need a food preparation, bathing and sleeping space. SO your first 3 days might be your kitchen, your master bathroom and your bedroom. A rule of thumb is to place anything you use daily within arm’s reach, and anything used less than once per week can go up high (those upper shelves!) or down low (like the basement or under the bed).
Put the kids to work. Let’s face it…who loves boxes and bags more than your beloved pets…your children! Keeping your kids busy by letting them pop the bubble wrap, turn large boxes into craft projects or earning extra allowance by un-packing can benefit you both. Be realistic about what they can do based on age and safety…but ultimately, letting your children be part of the process will help you make great memories in your new home from day one. ‘Remember that time you turned the refrigerator box into an ice cream stand…that was SO cool!’
Save the rest for last. There is no doubt that as you begin to settle in, you will notice that something is missing, or you need to buy light bulbs and batteries. Maybe that shelving in the garage is falling apart, or you hate your new mailbox. Remember that everything will bother you more when you are tired and overworked. Make one list of all the things you think you need to buy or think you need to do. Finish each room, get a few good nights of sleep…and then revisit the list. You may have stumbled upon some existing solutions or found the energy to get creative – so you may not have to buy those new shelves, and maybe you found some old paint to spruce up that mailbox? Plus, you will have fresh eyes with which to prioritize the home projects, and a long time in your new home to get it done. 😉
Take a walk. Did you know the best way to get to know your new neighborhood is on foot? Get some fresh air and take a pedestrian cruise, both day and night. You’ll find out who else walks their dog after dinner, who keeps the porch light on and meet a new face or two along the way. While you are out – be sure to find out the name of the local neighborhood newspaper or community newsletter and join the list! Getting connected will get you settled right into the friendly faces who can ultimately make your new house a home in no time.
We hope these tips have been a great start to helping you get settled in without simply settling. Did we mention that we love sorting, organizing, un-packing and – yes – even lining those kitchen shelves and cabinets?! Call us crazy…or just call us…but we are always here to help!
Image Courtesy of BrainyQuote.com
Helen & Julie