Moving into a dorm or into an apartment in or around campus is never an easy process. You are working on a tight schedule, in the heat, and usually amongst a crowd of other students and parents. You also may be moving out of your family home for the first time in your life, which is a huge milestone! Whether it’s your freshman year or senior year, you don’t want to spend the day stressed out, that’s where we can help.
To help you avoid the mistakes that we made while moving in college we’re giving you twelve tips that will save you stress.
College Moving 101
1. Keep all of your paperwork organized in a folder
When you are moving into your dorm or anywhere off campus there will inevitably be a lot of paperwork to keep track of. Put all of your important papers in a folder. This may be an actual folder, or an electronic one. Whichever option you go with, just keep it all together. Separate it from the rest of your packed belongings and carry it in your purse or backpack when you move in. You’ll thank yourself when you aren’t digging in unpacked boxes for it or crossing your fingers that your Mom or roommate remembered where it went.
2. Write down all of your deadlines
Another moving tip that will help you stay organized is to write down all of your deadlines. You do not want to miss the last day to turn in your deposit or mix up your move in day.
3. Pack all of your belongings
This may seem obvious but many people have a lot of loose items when move day comes around. You may not see the harm in leaving your books, posters, and knick knacks outside of boxes. But having to pick up each of those items individually and transport them to your vehicle then all the way up to your dorm or apartment will really slow you down. The more items you have packed and ready to be easily transported, the faster the moving process will go.
4. Label all of your boxes
Having a label on each box will be a huge time saver. You won’t have to dig through each box to figure out what’s in it once you start the unpacking process.
5. If you are a parent hire a professional
Many of you may be parents preparing for your child’s move. If you are a parent and you really want to make sure that your child (I suppose we should start calling them adults) has as easy transition, hire professionals. It will save you a lot of effort and physical work, but most importantly it will free you up to spend precious time with your child before you have to say goodbye.
6. Be patient if you are enlisting your friends
Hiring movers is the least stressful option. However, when it comes to moving in and around a college campus, many people end up enlisting the help of friends and family members. You should know that if you are going to go this route, patience is key. Frustration can build when tackling something both physically and emotionally demanding. Take a deep breath and find your zen as best you can – everyone is there to help you, not frustrate you
7. Start early in the day or the day before if you can
Move in day at a dorm is all kinds of crazy. There are parents and students milling around everywhere and trying to get their belongings into their dorm, and because you’re not dealing with professionals things can get hectic. If it is at all possible, go a day early and unload. This may not be an option as many dorms have strict move in days. But, you can make sure that you do everything that you can to avoid some of the insanity by making sure that when move in time starts, you are ready to roll. If move in begins at 7 am, be there at 6:50 am!
9. Make sure you know where the loading zone is
Along with regulating the times that you are allowed to move in, most universities or apartment complexes will also regulate the area that you can unload in. This may be frustrating, but this measure is usually put into place to ensure that doorways and walkways remain accessible to everyone throughout the day. Make sure you know where you can park the day before.
10. Know the space you’re working with
Getting a feel for the layout of the space will allow you to make a plan for unloading, and you can also avoid the hassle of packing up pieces of furniture that may not actually fit – this happens more than you think. Just ask the dormitory or the apartment complex for the layout if you cannot personally visit before hand.
11. Coordinate with your roommate
If you’re meeting your roommate for the first time, try and connect with them before you move in. It will not only help you break the ice, but you can discuss the logistics of moving in. Such as: who’s bringing the mini fridge, do you both have a microwave, and what time you’re going to get there and start getting settled in.
There’s a lot to plan for when you’re moving into a dorm or an apartment on campus, especially if it’s for the first time. However, with a little bit of pre-planning the experience can be a lot easier. Make sure you keep all of your dates and paperwork in order, do your due diligence when it comes to packing, and get an early start! Happy moving and have a great school year!