Author Topic: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?  (Read 5955 times)

Lis

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Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« on: March 30, 2015, 08:05:53 AM »
I'm very excited to be moving apartments at the beginning of May! Right now I live in the basement apartment of a private home. The perks are nice (I only pay rent, literally everything else is included), but because of my landlord's declining health, they've asked me to leave. So I found a wonderful place that I'm very excited to move to! New place is less than 2 miles from work, so I'll be looking into a nice pair of sneakers to start walking. So excited! Before I start dancing for joy, I need to actually move and get my new apartment set up, and I absolutely know I'm forgetting things. So help me remember them and figure out how to do it in the most cost efficient way!

Moving costs: I'll be renting a truck myself. My hired movers are a bunch of friends who are ready to accept payment in pizza, beer, and homemade chocolates. I'm already starting to collect empty boxes from work deliveries. My parents have a handful of empty plastic containers I can borrow. Last time when I moved, most of my clothes went into garbage bags and unpacked almost right away. Question - my coworker recommended getting a few of those vacuum sealed bags that suck the air out. Are those worth it? I'm not too concerned about saving space, and garbage bags worked fine last time, so I'm leaning towards no...

Phone/cable/internet: My lease is for one year. I really have no idea what I'm doing after that one year, but it's possible I'll stay. All I 'need' is internet, but it seems bundles for the first year are cheaper than internet alone. I know they'll get me once the first year is up, but should I start with the bundle and see where it goes next year? Cable would be nice but not necessary (thank you Netflix and a borrowed HBO login info). I don't particularly care for a landline, my cell works fine.

Electricity - I currently don't pay for mine (landlords cover it) but I will in this new place. What are your hacks and recommendations for keeping the costs low? My gas stove also ties into the electric cost.

Any other ideas or recommendations you have please share! Thank you!!

Paul der Krake

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2015, 08:19:49 AM »
This isn't what you asked for but for the love of God, please pay the $1 to USPS to register your change of address and have your mail forwarded. And change your address with every business that sends you mail. The last dozen residents of my place didn't and I still receive their shit years after they moved out...

GizmoTX

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2015, 08:29:51 AM »
What about water, trash, & renters insurance?

Internet comes in different speeds -- you want it fast enough to support streaming but not the maximum ones for gaming. Get the cheapest plan for this speed that also includes wifi, assuming your phone can run on wifi to save cellular time.

I don't think the vacuum bags are worth it just to move, & they'll wrinkle your clothes.

rubybeth

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2015, 08:31:48 AM »
You probably don't need those vacuum bag things if you're just one person with not more than the usual amount of apartment stuff.

We have helped numerous friends move locally over the years, and basically we just loaded up our two cars as full as we could with stuff (not even in boxes, just stuff we could grab... lamps, clothing, bedding, etc.) and made as many trips back and forth as it took to empty one place and fill the next. The large items went into a truck/van/trailer or rented moving vehicle, and away they went. You'll want to box up kitchen and bathroom items, and protect anything small/breakable--maybe just put that into a vehicle vs. the moving van.

You can help your friends out by having things kind of corralled as much as possible into piles before they arrive, so it's easy to grab armloads. So furniture doesn't rub against other things, have old blankets or things on hand to put between pieces in the moving vehicle.

DH and I have a small one bedroom apartment and electric is cheap, usually less than $30/mo except in summer when we run the AC. I think the biggest electric cost for us is our refrigerator, since it's not necessarily a super efficient machine. I usually only keep a couple lamps on in the evening, and my husband uses focused task lighting (lamps that aim downward) when we does reading for school. Get the lightbulbs that last forever and are efficient, that should help.

As for the cell phone, make sure your phone actually works in your new place. I've had numerous friends find out too late that their cell didn't work well in their rental for whatever reason, so had to switch carriers. DH and I have a lower level unit in an older brick building and reception can get sketchy the further we are from windows, so we have a land line for security.

MrsPete

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2015, 08:37:34 AM »
I think you have a good handle on things.

I'd suggest that you STOP buying groceries.  Rather than move them, eat up those things in the back of your cupboards.

Start packing now.  Warm weather's coming; start packing up your winter things.  I would not buy special vaccum bags for moving.  I would, however, buy a pack of black plastic garbage bags, poke a hole in the top, and put them "over" your clothes.  Tie the hangers together with string or rubber bands.  This means your friends can just "hug" a bag and carry it out.  Pack up dishes, etc. that you don't use every day.

As you pack, develop a system.  Label your boxes so your friends will know where to move them:  Kitchen, closet, living room.  Then when you start to unpack, at least things'll be in the right rooms. 

Start decluttering.  Will you want to get rid of any current furniture when you move?  If so, go ahead and do it before moving day.  The less you have to move, the better that day will go. 


aetherie

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2015, 08:40:19 AM »
This isn't what you asked for but for the love of God, please pay the $1 to USPS to register your change of address and have your mail forwarded. And change your address with every business that sends you mail. The last dozen residents of my place didn't and I still receive their shit years after they moved out...

I did this last year and it was free (forwarding for 12 months). I think you can even fill out the form online.

Also posting to follow, since SO and I will be moving in June.

nanu

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2015, 08:50:35 AM »
Posting to follow since SO and I are moving to our first apartment together in July

Lis

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2015, 09:17:32 AM »
Woohoo lots of replies so quickly! Thanks!!

Paul and aetherie - will do. I did that last time I moved too and I'm pretty sure it was free. Just went to my post office and filled out the form. Got a nice book of coupons too! I do almost everything online, so I personally get maybe 2 pieces of mail a week. The rest I get now is for previous tenants :/

Gizmo - Water and trash are covered. I'm moving into a co-op building (renting from the owner). So I'm responsible for rent, electric, and cable/internet/phone. I've been meaning to look into renter's insurance for a while, even brought it up with my new car insurance guy. I think he quoted me somewhere around $200 for the year. Thanks for the reminder - I'll look into that again!

Ruby - thanks! Definitely will be more organized this time when I move compared to last time. My goal is to have everything in boxes (that can fit in boxes) by that morning and leave nothing open. I have a friend who lives in the building next to mine and he says electric is $0.29/kilowatt (I think - this was a while ago when I was looking into moving into his building). He uses tons of electric (side business of fixing up video game consoles) so he said I shouldn't worry. But I'd rather use and pay for the least possible amount. And yes, the cell phone works! First thing I checked... I've been living in my current apartment for almost two years and my cell has been completely useless. Luckily my landlord provided a landline, or else that would have been hell. As it was, it was already pretty difficult.

MrsPete - decluttering started this weekend :) Started a box of stuff to donate and threw out two bags of garbage. And that's exactly how I moved all my clothes last time. I'm thinking I might try to cover my drawers with plastic so I don't even have to empty those. All furniture and big ticket items will be coming with me... time to raid the rest of my apartment (definitely the kitchen) to see what else I can get rid of.

Nanu - Congrats!

Iowa - thanks so much for the offer, but unfortunately I'm on the east coast in lower New York. Good luck with your move!!

I should also mention I'm only moving a few miles away, so multiple trips is possible (just not the best idea).

Paul der Krake

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2015, 09:34:43 AM »
This isn't what you asked for but for the love of God, please pay the $1 to USPS to register your change of address and have your mail forwarded. And change your address with every business that sends you mail. The last dozen residents of my place didn't and I still receive their shit years after they moved out...

I did this last year and it was free (forwarding for 12 months). I think you can even fill out the form online.

Also posting to follow, since SO and I will be moving in June.
You are correct. The $1 I was thinking of is just for ID verification purposes, it gets refunded to the card.

The coupon book only contained offers for crappy food, satellite TV, or other types of highly wasteful businesses. But that must vary by location, you might get lucky.

MountainBeard

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2015, 10:01:43 AM »
For boxes I normally go the grocery store.  The big fruit boxes are very sturdy and some have slide on tops so you can open/close them without taping.

FrugalShrew

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #10 on: March 30, 2015, 10:56:28 AM »
Last time I moved, I made up a small box of "moving supplies," with my packing tape, sharpies, duct tape, some pens, a pad of paper, twine, and a pair of scissors/box cutter. Having a central location to keep my packing tape & sharpies was really helpful as the house became chaotic with boxes. The duct tape, pens, paper, and twine were just generic supplies that I found helpful to have in case anything came up. And then it's nice to have your scissors or box cutter handy when you are ready to start unpacking on the other end.

I also made up another small box of "kitchen essentials," with 1 bowl, 1 cup, 1 fork, 1 spoon, 1 sharp knife, 1 wooden spoon, 1 small pot, salt, and pepper. That way I was able to pack up 90% of my kitchen supplies but continue cooking for myself easily through the move, and I didn't have to worry about rushing to unpack my kitchen supplies either.

nanu

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #11 on: March 30, 2015, 11:13:07 AM »
Last time I moved, I made up a small box of "moving supplies," with my packing tape, sharpies, duct tape, some pens, a pad of paper, twine, and a pair of scissors/box cutter. Having a central location to keep my packing tape & sharpies was really helpful as the house became chaotic with boxes. The duct tape, pens, paper, and twine were just generic supplies that I found helpful to have in case anything came up. And then it's nice to have your scissors or box cutter handy when you are ready to start unpacking on the other end.
This. I did this last time I moved and it's super useful.

coffeehound

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #12 on: March 30, 2015, 01:36:51 PM »
Last time I moved, I made up a small box of "moving supplies," with my packing tape, sharpies, duct tape, some pens, a pad of paper, twine, and a pair of scissors/box cutter. Having a central location to keep my packing tape & sharpies was really helpful as the house became chaotic with boxes. The duct tape, pens, paper, and twine were just generic supplies that I found helpful to have in case anything came up. And then it's nice to have your scissors or box cutter handy when you are ready to start unpacking on the other end.
This. I did this last time I moved and it's super useful.

I also usually 'move' a tote bag first thing, with the item listed above, plus a roll (or two) of toilet paper, a towel, and a bar of soap. 

tlars699

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #13 on: March 30, 2015, 01:37:46 PM »
Last time I moved, I made up a small box of "moving supplies," with my packing tape, sharpies, duct tape, some pens, a pad of paper, twine, and a pair of scissors/box cutter. Having a central location to keep my packing tape & sharpies was really helpful as the house became chaotic with boxes. The duct tape, pens, paper, and twine were just generic supplies that I found helpful to have in case anything came up. And then it's nice to have your scissors or box cutter handy when you are ready to start unpacking on the other end.
This. I did this last time I moved and it's super useful.
Same for Bathroom- if you can get those little reusable travel bottles for 1$ and put in your soaps/oils that you use frequently.
1 washcloth, spare toothbrush, travel toothpaste, and 1 towel.
I would also suggest making two "UNPACK ME FIRST" (What the above is) boxes. One to pack up right away and then have ready, and the other to pack up your stuff you're using until then.
Get cleaning supplies, too:
Workman's paper towels (denim blue- semi-reusable)
Mr Clean Outdoor De-greaser (For cabinet shelves and above them. Blech!!)
Scrubbing brushes- 1 toilet, one flat for scrubbing floors, and one grout brush or old toothbrush for corners, etc.
Dawn(blue, no special scents) dishsoap
Baking soda- At least 4 boxes(Fridge, freezer, closet/entryway/laundry room, sprinkler). More if you have pets.


CowboyAndIndian

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #14 on: March 30, 2015, 02:38:35 PM »
For boxes I normally go the grocery store. 

Try the liquor store to get boxes.

The boxes used for spirits and wines are strong since most of them are meant to handle a case.
A case is approx 36 lbs (14 kg for the metric folks).

galliver

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #15 on: March 30, 2015, 03:50:26 PM »
My favorite place to get boxes was the bookstore. They had a ton, they were clean, and they were sturdy. And a good size for most things.

DEFINITELY pack everything in boxes before friend-movers show up. It drives me crazy when people don't. A few lamps, decorations, vacuum cleaner, etc are fine, but a bunch of open-top boxes, baskets, etc. are a PITA to deal with. Be kind to your friends. Make this easy. (Sounds like you're already planning to, kudos!)

I use clothes (non-fancy ones like t-shirts), towels, linens, etc to pack other boxes; to cushion things and to keep them from shifting around. Of course that means you get them back much slower, as you have to unpack, then wash (to get the wrinkles out), so leave about a week's worth out! But then I don't have a bunch of trash after unpacking (paper, bubble wrap). Alternately, I found paper shreddings and junk mail make good packing materials for various applications. And as others including you have said, packing is a great time to declutter since you're touching every single item you own. I did an FB giveaway to friends and that was a lot of fun. Also somehow made it easier to part even with things that friends didn't claim and give the things to Goodwill.  Finally, I second the idea of the "packing supplies box". Did this for my last move with tape, markers, and trash bags (I was waterproofing every box b/c I was moving x-country and my stuff was going to leave my sight! Cue paranoia!).

As far as electricity usage, I think the lowest hanging fruit is to replace your incandescent bulbs, if any, and try to minimize use of climate control (AC/heat). Some people unplug their electronics or turn off the power strips when they aren't in use; not sure what the ROI on that is (my electronics power strips tend to be pretty far out of reach so that seems like a huge inconvenience, but I may one day come around). A one-time purchase of a toaster oven may help you save on oven use (you can roast small portions of fish, vegetables, pizza, toasted sandwiches, etc). After I got mine, I only used my oven for batch cooking (usually meats or cookies :) ). Don't do what I did this weekend and turn your oven to warm instead of off for ~18 hours before you  notice :/

Good luck with the move!

jopiquant

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #16 on: March 30, 2015, 04:44:57 PM »

Phone/cable/internet: My lease is for one year. I really have no idea what I'm doing after that one year, but it's possible I'll stay. All I 'need' is internet, but it seems bundles for the first year are cheaper than internet alone. I know they'll get me once the first year is up, but should I start with the bundle and see where it goes next year? Cable would be nice but not necessary (thank you Netflix and a borrowed HBO login info). I don't particularly care for a landline, my cell works fine.


Congratulations! Having friends to help you move is the best. I love helping people move - bonus workout while hanging out with friends. I didn't see anyone respond re: your bundle question. If you have tv and phone otherwise accounted for, is the phone+cable+internet actually cheaper in real dollars than internet alone? Where we live, it's more like "only a few dollars more and you could have this other crap you don't even need!" If it's not actually cheaper in real terms, I'd leave it as is.

Coonz

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #17 on: March 30, 2015, 05:16:22 PM »
It is good you are thinking about stuff now! The sooner you start, the easier things will be. I just moved yesterday ;). Start your trash, donate, and pack piles! If you have stuff you would like to sell on craigslist/ebay, START NOW!

Start your mail forwarding a week or so before you move (free in the post office if they actually have the forms, $1 online) and update banks, family, insurance, license, amazon, employer, alma mater, voter registration etc. with the new address.

Take pictures of the new place before you move in for security deposit purposes- can even email them to the new landlord beforehand so you KNOW you are on the same page. Email your current landlord with the date you are moving out and the address you are moving to for legal/security deposit purposes (your state may require a certain number of days as notice).

That is interesting that you still need your own internet in a co-op. Who needs cable? And renter's insurance is usually $10-15 a month from my experience. Definitely worth it.

Have an overnight bag with a set of clothes, toothbrush/paste, scissors/box cutter/toilet paper!!/bottle opener/set of utensils for easy meals :), etc. so you don't have to unpack everything right when you arrive. Make sure you leave out a few rags/broom/cleaner/vacuum so you can properly clear out your old space.

Put everything you possible can in boxes and label them. Don't think you will remember where you put the silverware. Your friends will have a much happier time if they arrive to everything already packed and in nice, closed, packable, stackable boxes. If there are multiple people involved in the move, I color code the boxes with colored painters tape.

Electricity- unplug things when they aren't in use: coffee grinder, hair dryer, microwave, toaster, chargers, etc. Blankets are cheap heaters, keep the fridge full, don't watch TV all day!

Random other things- I use an old set of sheets to cover my mattress when I move so I don't get dirt all over the mattress or the sheets I sleep on. If you have a bed or other furniture that requires assembly, put all of the parts and any tools required to assemble them in a labeled baggy/tupperware. If you are transporting food that needs to get into the fridge, make you sure you put it in a separate bag/box and unpack that first. Stack dishes sideways like records (you can even wrap and stack them in a dish drying rack if you have one and stick it all in a box). Wrap knives in foam/bubble wrap/tape so they don't stab everything and everyone. If you are moving something heavy with drawers (dresser), I've known some people to keep everything in the drawer, remove it, wrap it, and use it as a "box". Easy. Move early in the day. Nobody like packing/unpacking in the dark. Put liquids in baggies so they don't ruin everything else.

Man, I have moving on the brain! The amount of things we sold on craigslist more than covered the amount we spent moving....by a lot!

Lis

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #18 on: March 31, 2015, 09:29:58 AM »
Wow, so many awesome ideas... thank you!!

Definitely will be packing an overnight/first day bag or box. My parents are coming over and taking the kitties to the new place in the morning and cat sitting for a few hours, giving them time to get used to the apartment and keeping them out of the way. I'm planning on backing a box with one pair of clean sheets, one clean towel, etc., but you've given me other things I need to remember about. Great idea on where to get the boxes! So far I've been getting quite a few from work, but I'll definitely be scouting around some suggested places.

As for Cable/internet question, I'm full of shit. Internet will be ~$60/mo (not including taxes) and the bundle is $85. So internet alone it is :)

Sibley

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #19 on: March 31, 2015, 10:09:19 AM »
Packing clothes - put everything in suitcases. Borrow if you don't have enough.

Use towels, sheets, blankets as filler/padding so things aren't damaged.

Eat everything you can before you move. Weird combos are fine, they'll still fill your stomach. It's really dumb to move food. Plus, it's heavy.

Stuff that you find you need in new place - ask friends/family first. Many people inherit people's stuff when they die. Your aunt may have someone's entire kitchen, etc.

New place - you might want to allocate some time for cleaning. I have never moved into a place where the kitchen cabinets are clean. Where I currently am, I had to scrape the grease off some of the shelves first. also generally clean drawers, etc before I put stuff in them. Generally pretty dirty.

Very important - after all your stuff is out of the old place, go back and clean it very well. The goodwill of your former landlord matters.

Cultivate a calm, cheerful attitude for the day of the move. Otherwise no one will ever help you move again.

Renter's insurance is often required. If not, get it anyway.

Declutter as much as possible before the move, and try not to reacquire in the new place.

Moving cats:
I've had plenty of experience. Lock them in the bathroom during the move (or other room that can stay closed the entire time) with beds, food, water and litter box. They'll settle down eventually and sleep. When the strange people are gone, open the door and let them come out on their own terms. It's ok if they sleep in the cabinet for 2 days. Physically show them where the food/water and litter box are so they know (put them in the box, etc). You may have to show them a few times, depends on the cat.

My cats need my bedroom to be put together and look "normal" in order to calm down. Until then, they're crying constantly. As a result, that is the first thing I do. The rest of the house can be a disaster, but if my bedroom is normal they're ok. It gives them a safe place to be and to venture out from there. Most of the cat's initial exploration will likely occur overnight.

Good luck moving!

Lis

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #20 on: March 31, 2015, 10:44:49 AM »
Hold up, I'm not full of shit. Now I'm just confused.

90% sure the building is wired for Verizon (waiting on realtor to confirm). Looking at Verizon's 'Create Your Own Bundle' page now... internet alone with no contract is $70 a month. Fine. If you add the basic cable to the package, it goes down to $60. This is with no two year contract... Whaaat?

galliver

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Re: Moving apartments - what am I forgetting?
« Reply #21 on: March 31, 2015, 04:21:39 PM »
Hold up, I'm not full of shit. Now I'm just confused.

90% sure the building is wired for Verizon (waiting on realtor to confirm). Looking at Verizon's 'Create Your Own Bundle' page now... internet alone with no contract is $70 a month. Fine. If you add the basic cable to the package, it goes down to $60. This is with no two year contract... Whaaat?

Have you tried http://www.cablemover.com/home ?

Obviously, make sure you're looking at total price when comparing. Our company (Charter) advertises internet for 39.99/mo and bundles "starting at 29.99/mo EACH" meaning the total bundle would be ~$90 (since you need to get internet, cable, and phone to get the bundle price). But I have heard of stupid cases of the bundle being cheaper, in which case obviously that's the better choice (but read fine print).