move coordinating

Phase 2: The Unpacking Process

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We’re continuing our journey through a client’s move to Calgary from a different city by exploring what comes after the actual move – unpacking.

Before our team at Calm Order even gets to the boxes, we also need to know what the new space is like. We were already able to get an idea of their current living situation and devise a plan. A soon as we have access to the home, we conducted a walk-through of the new property. In this walk-through we were able to see how their belongings would fit and function in the new space that suited their lifestyle (based on their preferences)

The unpacking process can be described as a “strategic transition” process, not a “shove and place wherever there is room” process. To start unpacking, our team follows some key steps:

 

Group items into categories

Sometimes, we open a moving box to find a mix of everything from clothes, to tools, kitchen gadgets, plants, garden supplies, and office supplies all in the same box. To make sure each item ends up in their proper new place, it is important to make sure they become grouped with similar items before they get put away. Sort before you organize.

 

Set up a sorting station

In order to organize the items, we set up a sorting station for all the miscellaneous items. Using bins, boxes or baskets for sorting and categorizing. We line them up in a row on a table or area to establish an efficient sorting work area.

 

Determine the major categories 

Next, we take a good look at what items were contained inside the boxes. While looking, we consider how we are going to group the items. For example, if it was immediately evident there were more of the garage tools than the other items, This would form our first category and all similar items were placed into their own separate bin. From here, we were able to continue sorting the rest of the items based on similarities until everything was sorted into a separate category.

 

Break down large categories into smaller ones

However, this categorization can go one step further. Within our newly sorted box of tools, we noticed a lot of screws and left over parts from the build. Instead of leaving them loose in the bin where they were likely to get lost or misplaced, we grabbed another container just for the miscellaneous screws and parts

As we continued, we broke down the categories and sorted each container whenever we noticed another large quantity of similar items. It is easier to sort piles now instead of having to re-sort a large and overwhelming pile that was just sorted. Whenever a new category trend is identified, it is helpful to start another bin sooner rather than later.

 The unpacking process takes time and patience – it is not conductive or efficient to just start opening boxes and place items in empty drawers and cupboards. Sorting is a key component, and one that our team at Calm Order takes seriously. Are you having trouble sorting through your items, or knowing how to properly categorize your items? In our next post, we’ll take a closer look at proper sorting techniques to help you with any organizing project you choose.

Phase 1: Getting ready for the big move

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On average, it can take a minimum of four weeks to complete a seamless move – in that time, there is a lot of planning, research, shopping, packing, and organizing involved. Wherever a client is moving from or moving to, there are a lot of steps involved to make sure the process is successful and efficient.

Calm Order was recently contacted by a client in another city who is preparing to move to Calgary. When a client doesn’t live in Calgary, we need to get creative in order to understand the scope of the project because we can’t just go over to the property to look around. For this project, we connected with the client over FaceTime, and got them to show us around their home. We had the client show us every place in their home, from kitchen cupboards to closets and drawers, so we could get a complete picture of what their space was like, how they were using it, and what items and belongings we had to work with.

 During the “walk-through” over video call, we could see that there were a lot of items stored around the house, and not necessarily in an organized or practical way. For example, there were light bulbs stored in four different places around the home, piles of paperwork and mail left out on the kitchen counter, and miscellaneous items scattered throughout each room of the house. At this point, we were able to step forward to the planning process, so we could devise a way to create order for their upcoming move and new home.

 Moving is as much about the planning as it is about the actual move – at this point all we had done was seen their current home, but this was an important step so we could begin the process of getting their belongings sorted, organized, and ready to move to a new city and a new home. The process of going through your belongings and seeing how you use your space is important to understand before you move them into a new space.

How was your experience in preparing for a move? Share your stories and photos with us in the comments or on our Facebook page.

Don't forget to make your moving checklist!

If you're planning on moving soon or in the process of moving, you know that there are a lot of tasks that need to be completed before the process is over! In order to stay on track, make sure that you create a checklist with all of the important tasks that you need to this. Checklists are important because during a busy time like moving, it is very easy for people to forget to do even the most important tasks. With so much going on, many things can get lost in the shuffle. Whatever needs to get done, make sure you write it down.

Checklists also make it easier for you to delegate to others. For a more organized move, don’t be afraid to ask from help, either from family or friends, or even professional moving services. This will help make the process as efficient and stress-free as possible. You want to make sure that you have enough time to complete the process without rushing, but you also don’t want to be perpetually unpacking your belongings, so a checklist can also help you stay on track.

While many items are easy to remember (like decluttering and packing), there are other tasks that often get overlooked. Below, we’ve outlined some of the tasks that you should include on your list:

-       Important records: This includes any school, medical, or dental records you may need to transfer to a new service. If you are unable to have them transferred, you may need to obtain your own copies.

-       Time-off work: Why try and finish a move over the weekend? Make sure you take plenty of time so you don’t have to rush or put off moving until your done work for the day. It might be a good idea to take an extra day or two to relax and enjoy your new home!

-       Moving documents: Designate one folder for all of your important moving documents so you don’t forget anything (or accidentally pack it!) for moving day.

-       Insurance: If you’re moving a lot of valuable items, it may be worth it to get moving insurance. This way, you will be covered if anything goes wrong during the move. Make sure to carefully pack your valuable items and store them in a safe location during the move.

-       Know where to go for help: If you’re moving to a new area, it may be useful to research the different service providers (electrician, plumber) in case you notice something isn’t working right during your move or right after.

-       Return borrowed items: Have you recently loaned items from the library or from a friend? Make sure you return everything that you have out on loan and there is nothing left on your records.

-       Prescriptions: Visit your pharmacist and make sure that all your prescriptions have been filled so you don’t have to worry about running out during the move and the initial period after.

-       Electronics: Many electronics come with a variety of cables, so take pictures of all of your plugged-in electronics so you can easily set them up in your new home. It is also a good idea to back up your devices before the move.

-       Plan a moving party: Make sure you enjoy the last couple of nights in your home. Help your children plan one last sleepover, or invite family, friends, and neighbours over for one last evening.

-       Pack an bag with essentials: Make sure that all of your essentials like toiletries, a couple of outfits, shoes, snacks, and important documents like passports and birth certificates.

-       Defrost freezer: A day or two before you move, make sure that you empty out the items in your freezer and make arrangements for their storage. Then, let your freezer defrost so it is ready to be moved to your new home.

-       Drain fluids: Make sure that equipment and machinery like hoses and lawnmowers are empty of any water or gasoline before moving.

-       Plants: If you’re taking plants with you, make sure they have been watered and cared for, and are stored in a safe location during the move. If you are unable to keep them, see if family and friends are interested in looking after them, or donate them to a local charity.

-       Check the weather: The weather is constantly changing here, so make sure you stay up to date on what the weather conditions will be like on moving day. This may affect your travel times and how much you are able to do on that day.

Don't forget anything during your move by keeping track of everything you need to get done before, during and after the process. When in doubt, there are plenty of printable checklists available online to help you get started!