Though I’m a little late, I have a fresh new free wallpaper for August! You can download it here.
Mr. Lively, Franklin, and I have been in our Austin rental home for just over a week now!
Though we still have things to complete on our checklist like hanging art, selecting a new living room rug, and organizing the pantry, the home is taking shape quite nicely.
Boxes have been broken down and recycled, walls have been repainted, and we are getting familiar with our adorable neighborhood (we love Hyde Park!).
Over the past few weeks, I’ve gotten a handful of tweets and emails from people asking me to share the tips we’ve gleaned from this move.
So while the move is still fresh in my mind, I’d like to share 16 of the biggest tips I have to help you make your next move a little more intentional.
Not moving right away? Simply save or Pin this post for the next time you need to pack up and make a change. : )
16 Intentional Moving Tips For Home & Business
#1 – Create a Values-Based Intention
No surprise here, right? Before making any big decisions or taking action, I think it’s best to define your intention for your move.
For us, we decided our Values-based intention was:
“To have a Peaceful and Enjoyable move, given the current circumstances.”
You’ll want to select your own Values for your intention (here’s a quick Values checklist). Some common moving intentions could include:
Then, it’s up to you to find ways to embody your Values throughout the various aspects of your move.
In the tips to come, I’ll share what we did to align with our Values, but can also apply to many other moving Values as well.
#2 – Host an easy going away party
We decided to have a super simple going away party by hosting a little afternoon open house at our favorite bar, Matilda (definitely hitting our peaceful and enjoyable Values!).
We picked a Sunday afternoon since we figured most of our friends with and without children would be able to stop by.
It involved no preparation (other than sending out a free evite), no mess to clean up, and no expense (other than our drinks).
Just a fun time with our friends at a place we loved.
#3 – Get your appointments scheduled
Before heading out of town, we scheduled a bunch of final appointments with the hairdresser, groomer, dentist, doctor, and mentor.
Getting caught up on our appointments before we left means we don’t have to rush out and find new doctors and stylists anytime soon.
#4 – Do your favorite things before you leave
Before leaving Chicago, we made a short list of the places we knew we wanted to enjoy one more time before the move.
#5 – Select the moving method that aligns with your Values
This is perhaps where your Values may dictate a different course of action from our own.
If you Value ease, for example, you may spring to go with a deluxe moving company that does all the packing, moving, and transport from start to finish.
However, if your Value is frugality, you might decide to pack, load, and transport your stuff all on your own in a car or rented UHaul truck.
For our move, we wanted peace and enjoyment, but given the fact that Mr. Lively’s company was not paying for any moving expenses (he got remote status for a Chicago company, which is awesome, but didn’t include a moving package) it was important to use to save our hard earned savings, within reason.
So rather than go with an all-in-one company that offered to move us for $8,400 – with a two week delay between packing our stuff and delivering it – we did a mix of traditional movers and moving pods.
- First, we packed most of our stuff ourselves.
- Then, we hired movers in Chicago to pack up our apartment and load the boxes and furniture into UHaul UBoxes.
- UHaul transported our stuff to Austin.
- And finally, a local moving company (found through online reviews) unloaded our pods into our house.
This combination of movers and pods came in at just about half of what the traditional moving company quoted us – including boxes and packaging.
I’ll be honest: at first I was wary of the moving pod system. I was worried about our fragile vintage marble table tops getting damaged with all the different companies loading, transporting, and unloading our pods.
However, the transport worked out flawlessly!
Everything – except a single cereal bowl – made it safe and sound.
I would definitely use the pods + movers system the next time around if we ever make a large move.
(However, I will say that our personal UHaul experience with a location manager has been less than ideal. This will obviously vary location to location, but we have had a heck of a time trying to correct a mischarge. So while I do support the moving pod system, I have to admit that our experience hasn’t been completely headache free.)
#6 – Use a timeline that aligns with your Values
Moving cross country with a large company usually means not having your stuff for 7-18 days.
Since we knew that we wanted to have a peaceful transition into the new home and city, we opted to have the movers pack our stuff in Chicago a week before we left. This meant we only had what could fit in our small Prius for the last week in Chicago.
But it also meant that after our road trip to a friend’s wedding and driving down to Austin, our stuff would arrive within 48 hours.
Another bonus of this method was that we didn’t have to coordinate with other tenants moving out at the end of July for parking space while the truck loaded… and it just felt more peaceful overall to do it long before the road trip began.
#7 – Exfoliate before you pack
As I shared a few weeks ago, I did another Throw Out 100 Things Challenge (Donate, recycle, pass on, toss out) before the move. I also sold a decent amount of furniture that I knew wouldn’t work for our new home, like bar stools, our dining table, and our modern side chairs.
By exfoliating the clutter I didn’t want need/use/love meant that I had less packing to do and it helped us move in three pods instead of four, which saved quite a bit of money.
In addition, selling off unnecessary furniture through Craigslist allowed us to earn some cash we can now use towards the new rugs and items we’d like to use in this home.
PS – I also bought a few great pieces I found on Craigslist in Chicago for the new space, too. I knew that the price we got them for there was worth the cost to ship them.
#8 – Buy more packing materials thank you think you’ll need
This tip came from my sister-in-law, Camille, who has done several moves across the world. She told us to buy as many boxes as we could so that we wouldn’t run out of packing materials.
It was more peaceful having a few leftover boxes that we needed to return, rather than having to stop in the middle of packing to make an emergency run to UHaul or Lowes for more boxes.
Admittedly, we ended up needing to make a quick second trip anyways, which goes to show: get a lot more than you think you’ll need… because you may very likely need even more than that!
#9 – Use Smart Move packing tape
My favorite tip of all happens to be this Smart Move Packing Tape that Mr. Lively picked up.
You use it to label boxes for each room as you pack. This way you or your movers know exactly where to put each box in the new space, and you know what stuff is inside.
Another tip with the tape is to label each doorway with the tape as well in the new space so there is no confusion about which bedroom gets which box.
#10 – Pre-schedule as much as possible
Mr. Lively took care of this project and it paid off well: He called the utility companies and selected our internet provider (based on local recommendations) before we moved so that they could get our services up and running right when we arrived.
It wasn’t essential, but it made for a smooth transition, especially considering he started working from home within a few days of arriving.
#11 – Paint Early, if possible
If you are like me and start pre-decorating before you move, you may want to schedule your painters within the first week of arrival.
Since I’m crazy about the decorating stuff, I had the painters come the day after the movers arrived (if I could have made it work logistically, I would have had the painters come before the movers arrived). This way the stuff was still in boxes and it was easier for the painters to do their job.
It also helped the space to feel like our own right from the start.
However, this would not be ideal for those who don’t have a clear vision of what they’d like the space to look like right away. In which case waiting awhile and living in the space would be a better idea to help you get a feel for how you’d like to design the space over time.
A few readers also asked me to share about what it was like to move the business, too. So here are my tips that I’ve learned so far on that end as well!
#12 – Contact your Accountant for legal considerations
First and foremost, I think it’s important to talk to your accountant about any business structure and tax considerations.
I did just that and will be working with my accountant to move the business here in Austin. I’ll also be sorting out what needs to be done with my sales tax ID, etc.
Because all of these details can vary state to state, I find the peaceful thing for me to do is to leave this part up to the pros!
#13 – Have a going away party for clients and co-workers
If you have a small business that has local clients, or you have a staff, you may want to have a little going away party to celebrate your transition!
I personally did a little going away party for blog readers and it was an enjoyable way to close a special chapter of my career.
#14 – Delegate to keep systems running smoothly
Because the Intention Tattoos launched while I was on a quick business trip to New York, I was very grateful to have my lovely Right Hand Lady, Isabel, manning the tattoo ship right from the start!
She’s done a great job keeping orders running smoothly and answering any tattoo-related questions while I’ve been traveling or busy with the move.
#15 – Use an away message with a few buffer days to help you get settled in
Because I was basically in flux from July 28th – August 10th, I put up an autoresponder on my inboxes to alert people of my travels and to let them know when I would be back “to work.”
Knowing that people were aware of the limbo helped me focus on unpacking boxes and spending my first few days in the city, rather than hovering over my inbox.
I’ll also add: if you work for yourself, can make it work logistically, and want to… try taking a week off in the new space to settle in and attend to your to-do list.
I did that last week, and it was personally a very peaceful and enjoyable choice.
Initially I thought I only needed about 3-4 days, but the full seven days turned out to be exactly what I needed.
#16 – Add your own tip!
I’m by no means an “expert” when it comes to moving and I’d love to share your moving tips as well!
If you have a great suggestion for people going through a big (or little) move, please add it to this list below!
As you can see from the tips above, we did a fairly good job adapting our Values to each circumstance and decision.
Though it wasn’t completely peaceful or enjoyable, it went about as well as I ever could have hoped!
When making your next move, consider taking the time to set your Values. Then, let them act as a guide when you make the plethora of choices that are inherent in any move, big or small.