5 Must-Have Moving Hacks for Military Families

5 Must-Have Moving Hacks for Military Families from North Carolina Lifestyle Blogger Adventures of Frugal Mom

Even in the best situations, moving can result in utter madness. But for military families, the prospect of moving can be replete with daunting details and unknowns.  Furthermore, relocations for military families can be frequent, sudden, and rife with unique challenges. Whether you’re embarking on your first Permanent Change of Station (PCS) or you’re a veteran at moving the family troop to new destinations – there’s always room for new moving hacks for military families. Read on for helpful moving tips and tricks so you and your family can relocate with less stress upon your next set of orders.

Keep a Moving Planner Notebook

While non-military families have options when it comes to timing and planning their moves, that’s not always the case with a military family.  That’s why planning is crucial.  But even this aspect of moving for military personnel and their family members can get sidelined sometimes.  The key here is to plan your move as best you can, but remember that military orders are subject to change.  Therefore, plan as much as possible without getting frantic. 

Realize that most of the moving action is going to happen within a month or two before your move.  So, keep a planning notebook to help you keep track of what you can do now, and what must be done later (or at the last minute).  A moving planner notebook is a lifesaver in keeping all information in one place.  From phone numbers to movers, utility companies, or what day you can expect your mail to be forwarded – you need a designated binder or notebook in which to put all this vital information.  A moving notebook will save your sanity, keep you organized and give you a timeline as to what needs to be done when.

Get Serious About What to Take

If you or your partner gets a sudden PCS, that could mean a frightful bit of stress in terms of what to take, toss or leave behind.  Eliminate that needless anxiety by following the 6-month rule.  To explain, if you haven’t used an item or worn a piece of clothing in your home in 6 months – toss it, sell it, or give it to a charity.  

If after assessing what to move and what not to move using the 6-month guideline, you still find yourself stuck with a ton of stuff, then start thinking about storage options.  Find a reliable national storage chain that can accommodate your needs. This way, no matter if your family will be based in Fort Drum in NY, or you need storage units in San Diego, you’ll have all your bases covered and your items safely stored.

Take Inventory (the Smart Way)

Remember that moving planner mentioned earlier? Keep a current inventory of what you need to move in that notebook. Furthermore, make your life easier by taking a photographic inventory and storing these pics on a dedicated file on your phone. This makes all your items easy to access, and you have a list of what you expect to get to your destination. 

Furthermore, this is a photo account of your items in case you need to file for damages or complain if you are unhappy with your mover.   Something else to think about is taking pictures of the back of your computers, modems, TVs, DVD players, etc.  Why? Because when you’re up to your eyeballs in boxes and relocating details, sometimes you might need some visual help in knowing which plug goes into what hole on your electronic devices.

Pack for Priority

That antique violin passed down by your great-grandfather doesn’t need to be unpacked as soon as you get to your new destination.  However, the toilet paper and coffee maker need to be a box you can get your hands on pronto.  Therefore, pack items that will be in immediate use at the end of your moving truck.  Conversely, pack the stuff you probably won’t need for a while in the nose of the moving van.  This will save you loads of frustration when you get to your new location.  Furthermore, you probably know to label all your boxes. However, make very distinctive and colorful labels for boxes that hold items you’ll need ASAP when you get relocated.

Unpack, Breathe, Repeat – Take it One Box at a Time

While you and your family might be on tight schedules and anxious to get nested, you’ve got to understand that moving doesn’t have to be harmful to your health.  In other words, take it one box at a time, one day at a time. Don’t annihilate yourself over a relocation.  Pace yourself while packing or unpacking.  Enlist help from friends or neighbors. Breathe your way through the relocation process and remember that small steps like these moving hacks added will end up in favorable results.

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