Packing can be one of the most stressful and time-consuming aspects of the moving process. Luckily, we’ve gathered these helpful packing tips for moving to keep you from wasting your time or money.
Did you know that in some cases, many of your moving expenses can be tax deductible? If you meet the following requirements, then there is a good chance you qualify to deduct moving expenses.
- You are moving for a new job or to a new location with your current employer.
- The commute between your new work location and previous house must be 50 miles further than your previous commute. (For example, if your previous commute was 10 miles, then the distance from your previous job location to your new house must be at least 60 miles.)
- In the 12 months after you move into your new house, you must work full-time for at least 39 weeks.
Check with your tax professional about what you might qualify for, but be sure to keep all of your receipts. Even things like airplane tickets, mileage and storage units can be expensed.
Packing is a great time to get rid of unnecessary clutter in your house. As you go through your things, set aside items that you know you don’t need or haven’t used in the past two years. Try selling unwanted furniture on sites like Craigslist, OfferUp or to your local consignment shop. Prefer to donate your items? If the clothing or goods you donate is in good condition or better, it may qualify as a charitable tax deduction. Keep an itemized log of the items you donate and their market value, you’ll need it to file the deduction.
Keep Track of the Little Things
This is one of the most important moving tips and tricks. Nothing is more frustrating than detangling a mess of wires or rummaging through a pile of screws to figure out what goes where. Here are a few, simple steps to help.
- For electronics, take pictures before disassembling. That way, it’s okay if you don’t remember where everything goes because you have a reference.
- Store different sections separately. A few plastic bags and a sharpie can make a huge difference here. For electronics, store everything that connects to one device in its own bag. For furniture, mark bags by different categories (for example, all of the screws that go to a headboard go in one bag. all of the screws that go to the base legs to in another.)
Pro Tip: If you want to take the organization to the next level, you can color code your wires and where they go with colored electrical tape, available at stores like Home Depot and Lowes.
Stick With the Essentials
Pack a box that has all of the essentials for your first night in your new home. Make sure this box is clearly marked so it will be easy to find when you’re unpacking. Here are some things you may want to include:
- Change of clothes
- Basic Tool Kit
- First Aid Kit
- Toilet Paper
- Coffee & Coffee Maker
- Paper Plates & Plastic Utensils
- Pet Supplies
Keep the Kids Occupied
If you’re moving with young kids, let them pick out a few, small items to either keep with them or place in the first day box. These small things can become a big comfort when moving to a new place, especially if the move will be a big adjustment in lifestyle.
On moving day, schedule a final play date for your kids with some friends or family. It will be fun for them, and is a great way to let you focus on any last minute moving issues that come up throughout the day.
Declutter Your Wardrobe
We’ve already touched on how donated items in good condition can qualify as tax deductions, but it is also a great way to start life in your new home without extra clutter. No matter what size house you’re moving into, bringing clothes you no longer wear or items you no longer use is just delaying the inevitable for when you finally do clean it out.
A good rule of thumb is that with the exception of specialty, season-related items, get rid of anything you haven’t used or worn in the past 18 months.
Clothes are one of those things you can start packing early on. Start by packing away off-season items. If you’re moving in the middle of summer, it’s probably safe to say that your winter clothes won’t be worn before move day. One of the more practical tips on moving, set aside the clothes you think you’ll wear in the last week or two at your old house, and then you can pack the rest.
Packing everything you own can be a daunting task, but a little planning and organization will save you both hours and dollars. Use these packing and moving tips to get you started and everything will go off without a hitch!
Royal Hawaiian Movers specializes in helping families across the country make the move to and from the Hawaiian Islands.