The art of stress-free moving
Let's face facts, you're not exactly the King of organisation, so, planning your move tends to stress you out (you’re already feeling kinda anxious). Don't panic just yet, Nemea has some top tips for a stress-free move, step by step. If you follow these tips, you'll soon be settled into your new home (with a few beers in the fridge ready for an impromptu housewarming party).
Anticipating administrative procedures
Whether you're moving from your mum and dad's comfortable home to a stylish new flat in your next city of study, or from your last student place to a new one, there are a few things you'll need to do. Hate paperwork? Have your parents always done it all for you? Take heart, independence is earned.
Here's a little checklist to help you make sure you don't forget anything:
- Before the move, change your address with the necessary organisations (your student social security, your mutual insurance company, etc.) and also with the CAF to ensure you continue to receive your APL or any other housing assistance (all good for your bank account).
- Cancel the lease for your current accommodation (if you were renting) 3 months before the desired date of departure (1 month is sufficient for furnished accommodation).
- Also inform your bank, insurance company and internet provider (Wi-Fi is life) of your upcoming departure.
- For your water, gas and electricity contracts (EDF, GDF...), try to negotiate with the next tenants to organise transferring the contract to them to avoid a much more expensive contract cancellation (your wallet will thank you).
Sort through your stuff
Is this old T-shirt full of holes you found at a flea market with "I want an aperitif" written on it really a must-keep? That old One Direction CD? Or that calendar from last year given to you by your Aunt Janine? Moving house is the best opportunity to sort through your belongings. You’ll have to empty your entire home and box up every item of clothing, so, make it count and ask yourself how useful these mountains of objects are. Have one bag in front of you to give away (you'll make people happy), then a bin bag for rubbish and your moving boxes for what you keep. Moving light will save you time, energy and can even make you money if you manage to sell a few things (it's worth it!).
Hire or borrow a van
We'd better warn you, there's little chance of all your furniture and boxes fitting into your old Renault Clio. To avoid ruining your storage efforts or finding yourself with your furniture back in flatpacks, get hold of a small truck, van or at least an SUV. There are several options for this: Someone you know (a friend's relative, a school friend, a distant cousin... don't be picky) has one and is willing to lend it to you (and if they could lend a hand at the same time, that would be amazing). The second (and more expensive) option is to rent a van via an online hirer. Hirers usually have simulators to help you estimate the size of van needed. Remember to book your vehicle in advance (especially if you’re moving during the summer).
Tips for optimising your moving budget
Stressed about moving house and your bank account’s feeling the pressure too? It’s true, moving can be expensive. As a student, you’re not rich, so be smart! Organise in advance and use a few tried and tested tricks.
Get free boxes and put them aside
It would be a shame to have to buy new boxes the day before you leave, so think about finding free ones well in advance. Are you a fan of online ordering? For once, this will save you money. (Who would have thought it!) Remember to keep all the boxes from your orders ready for re-packing with your stuff, especially the larger ones. In your quest for the perfect boxes (big, clean, no dodgy smells going on), supermarkets are your bestie. Medium and large stores (the local grocer’s also works) often end up with empty boxes piled in a skip. Remember to ask the manager as it may not be a ‘help yourself’ set up.
Ask for help on the day (and have back-ups)
It's time to call up your slightly neglected girlfriend or that clingy old classmate! You'll need all the help you can get to move furniture and boxes from your old home to your new one. Ask your friends, family and acquaintances, preferably well in advance! Remember to plan 'back-ups' in case someone doesn’t show. This way, you will be more relaxed on the big day. With people to help you, the move will also be quicker (which will leave you more time for a drink together when you’re done).