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Washington DC Real Estate Resource Center: Making A Positive Move

Whether you’re moving for the first time or you’re a pro at packing up, you can make your move as stress-free as possible by following a few tips from your Washington, D.C.-area real estate experts:

1) Make a list of items to be moved and those to be discarded. If you’re working with a relocation consultant, share your list of items to be moved to the consultant. Don’t forget things you may have stashed in the attic or basement, garage or off-site storage facility.

2) Gather moving supplies. Once you know you’re moving, start collecting sturdy boxes of various sizes. Remember: It’s better to have more boxes than you think you’ll need. You may also need heavy-duty strapping/packing tape, permanent markers, bubble wrap, and plain packing paper. Keep all your supplies in a central location.

3) Organize your packing system. As you pack, number the boxes and record the number and the contents of each box in a small notebook. Keep the notebook with your moving supplies. Label each box as specifically as possible (“kids’ plastic plates” instead of “kitchen”).

4) Pack items together. There’s nothing more maddening than unpacking your coffeemaker only to discover you’ve packed the filters and carafe in a different box. Likewise, keep extension cords, adapters, picture hangers, screws, etc. attached to appliances (or put them in a clear plastic bag and tape the bag to the appliance.)

5) Pack a separate “survival kit” that includes items you may need during and right after the move, including towels, toiletries, maps, medicines, moist wipes, sheets or sleeping bag, plug-in nightlights and a telephone. (Don’t forget to take along a list of important phone numbers.) Important personal papers – recent bank statements, current bills, settlement paperwork and receipts – should also be kept in your survival kit.

6) Be extra careful with valuables. Avoid packing and shipping treasured items such as jewelry, silverware, photos or small, fragile collectibles. Take these items with you if possible. If you must pack valuables, be sure not to draw attention to them by labeling the box “Mother’s diamonds” or “priceless antique sterling candlesticks.” Also be sure to check your homeowner's insurance to find out if you are covered during the move – and the amount of coverage – or if you need additional insurance.

7) Complete a change of address form at the post office or online at

Copyright © Michelle Buckman Real Estate

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Michelle Buckman Real Estate

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