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Moving tips for stress-free relocations

Moving house is right up there with divorce and changing jobs when it comes to raising your stress levels. It doesn't have to be that way. By following a few basic moving tips, it's possible to make a relatively carefree start to life in your new house. Remember, bubble-wrap is your best friend.

New house, new rules

One of the first and most liberating moving tips is that you don't have to take everything with you. Even if you aren't downsizing, a new house can be an opportunity to reappraise all the clutter you have accumulated in the old house. Do you really need those eight boxes of 90s music magazines or the three dressmaker's dummies? At the same time you book the removals van, why not book a skip?

Once you have identified those possessions that remain in the must-have category, you will need the holy trinity of removals: boxes, labels and bubble-wrap. Boxes can be begged from supermarkets or freecycle. Colour-coded labels are essential for efficient packing and taking the frustration out of unpacking. Bubble-wrap is your only defence against a removal company's determination to get the job done as quickly as possible.

Sorry IKEA, but flat-pack furniture does not easily withstand the trauma of a removals van. Dig out the screwdriver and allen key to dismantle wardrobes and shelving units for the best chance of them surviving the move.

Send the kids to the grandparents or a babysitter during the move. Otherwise they are bound to start rummaging through the boxes to find that long-forgotten toy (which went in the skip).

Free cardboad boxes for movings

Practicalities

One of the most important moving tips is to ensure you read the utility meters before you leave to ensure accurate billing. Also contact utility suppliers, TV and phone companies to inform them of the move. Invariably at least one of them will fail to register the move and continue to send you bills, but that is one of the unavoidable irrritations of modern life.

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