Most people don’t move on a whim. It’s not a task that should be taken lightly and can often be an arduous, stressful undertaking for all parties involved. That being said, there are some tips and tricks one can apply to their own moves to minimize the headache and anxiety of moving; one of them is being aware of the potential pitfalls that people make when they decide to move.
Procrastinating never bodes well for anybody, but being struck with Last Minute Syndrome can really affect the quality of one’s moving experience, and thus this is something everyone should endeavor to avoid.
Experts and experienced movers alike have implied that it takes a minimum of one month to prepare for a move, though this is highly dependent on the size of your household, the number of belongings you have, the number of people living in your current abode etc. Whatever your situation, the more time you give yourself prior to your official moving date, the smoother things are likely to be.
To avoid a rushed move, which can result in lost items, forgotten items, damaged valuables, and all-around disorganization and chaos, try creating a daily packing routine leading up to your moving date. While it’s crucial to craft a to-do list and routine that suits your needs, some common methods to help streamline your move can include:
- Packing up one room at a time (you can either start with the easiest or most difficult room)
- Ensuring you have enough packing materials suitable for your belongings (packing boxes, bubble wrap, packing twine, duct tape, newspaper, packing peanuts etc.)
- Sorting out your belongings into categories such as: Keep; Throw; Donate; Sell
- If moving with a partner or family, ensure they get in on the moving process as well and pull their weight
Procrastination and disorganization go together hand-in-hand, and it’s something you’d best avoid when embarking on a move. Some common mistakes people make when packing without a plan include:
- Not safeguarding and securing valuable items which may be irreplaceable – important documents, government identity cards, luxury items, family heirlooms etc.
- Not measuring furniture and appliances to see if they comfortably fit in your new accommodation
- Not attempting to declutter and spring clean your current place but trying to pack everything instead
- Not forwarding your mail, canceling or transferring your utilities, informing the necessary people, departments, and organizations of your change in address etc.
- Not conducting adequate and proper research on moving and removal companies and risk going over your moving budget.
- Not confirming the moving date with your removals and moving companies
To avoid the pitfalls mentioned above, try coming up with a packing to-do list to keep on top of everything and give yourself peace of mind.
Packing materials are key to ensuring that your belongings stay safe and unbroken during a move, but so is packing said belongings carefully and methodically. Haphazardly wrapping your items, especially valuable and fragile items, runs you the risk of damaging them, and the cost to repair or replace them may set you back financially.
To avoid such mishaps, consider hiring a professional moving or removals company that will either provide you with the necessary and required packing material and accessories for your belongings; or conduct the packing and wrapping themselves (if you’re willing to pay a bit more). If you’re moving to a Village House rental property, for example, the agency offers up to ¥30,000 yen of moving support, which can help alleviate some of your moving fees.
If you’re moving on a budget or moving sans professional help, you can still minimize any damage your belongings might incur but making sure to wrap and pack your items with cushioning and padded materials such as bubble wrap, newspapers, packing peanuts, and double or triple walled cardboard boxes for extra security and strength.
It’s all too easy to focus on packing up everything in your old place to move to your new place and forget about the administrative aspect of moving. Aside from having to “check out” of your ward or prefecture, you’re also going to have to either cancel your utilities or have the company you’re contracted with transfer them to your new address. Forgetting to do this will result in late fees or an extra bill or two.
It’s also important to remember to set up your utilities so that you have gas, water, and electricity when you move into your new place. Failure to do so may result in you having a miserable few days without running water, power, or heat.
In these fraught financial times, every little bit of savings counts and moving can be an expensive undertaking that can considerably strain your finances. To avoid draining your bank account, carve out some time dedicated to doing research on how to make your upcoming move as budget friendly as possible.
Start by comparing moving and removal companies if you need them. Not only might you save a few Yen, but you might also save your belongings from careless, disorganized “professionals” masquerading as moving experts.
If moving insurance is necessary, research and compile a list of insurance companies that specialize in moving too. Go through their websites with a fine-toothed comb and make sure that their insurance covers all that you need and meets your specific moving requirements.
In summary, striving to avoid some common moving mistakes will not only make for an easier moving experience but will also alleviate some of the stress and worry that comes with a move, big or small. Try to remember the 5 P’s when embarking on such a life-changing undertaking: Preparation Prevents Poor Panicked Performances.
If you’re reading this and thinking of moving to Japan or to another area of Japan, Village House has rental properties in over 1,000 locations in Japan’s 47 prefectures.