7 Tips That Will Make Last-Minute Moving Stress-Free

November 9, 2021Moving Tips
Milly Andrews

Born and raised in Portland, Milly has had a lot of experience moving and writing about the relocation process.

When it comes to last-minute moving, the limited time frame threatens to add more stress to what is already one of the most stressful life events. However, there is no time for despair (literally)! Is your move approaching quickly? Know that some clever time-efficient tricks can help your relocation become a successful one. And we are set to walk you through them.

What is a last-minute move, and what can cause it? There are two possible causes for relocation on short notice. Either you brought it on to yourself by procrastinating, or life happened, and it has become inevitable. Various reasons to move can bring an unanticipated relocation. Just think about a sudden job change, family problems, or any other type of emergency. Whatever the case, feeling that you won’t have enough time is bound to spike your anxiety levels up to the roof. We prepared moving hacks that will simultaneously preserve your mental health and allow you to get everything ready before the relocation day.

#1 Create a Last-Minute Moving Checklist and Form a Plan of the Attack

Organizing a move is an essential task at the beginning of every relocation, no matter how much you have left until the relocation day comes. However, in this case, it’s absolutely crucial! You must take control of the situation before it takes control of you. Set aside a few hours to write down a list of things that have to be done. It will allow you not only to set a reasonable timetable but also to avoid making relocation mistakes in a hurry. Creating a strategy is the answer if you’re wondering how can I move out quickly and efficiently.

The first item on your relocation to a new state checklist must be determining the relocation budget. The amount of money you have at your disposal can significantly impact how your move will look. Based on your budget, you can decide to hire movers (as the best option when you are in a hurry), or you’ll be stuck asking yourself: How can I move fast and cheap? When you determine your budget, you’ll get a bigger picture of tasks that lie ahead of you.

A woman creating a to-do list for cross-country moving and auto transport
”The list is the origin of culture. Wherever you look in cultural history, you will find lists.” Umberto Eco

#2 Focus On Crucial Things When Hiring Long-Distance Movers

Getting long-distance moving services is the easiest way to have a stress-free relocation when you need to speed things up. However, since you’re in a hurry, you probably won’t be able to studiously research relocation companies. Still, you can’t pick just any relocation team – remember that many relocation scams are circling the industry. That is why it is essential to focus your attention on research that won’t occupy too many hours but can show you if the relocation company is legitimate or not. The best (and the fastest) way of checking movers is to go on FMCSA’s website and use a company’s USDOT number to check license and insurance.

Unexpected additional costs are one more thing you should protect yourself from. Since you won’t be able to schedule multiple estimates, try getting the quote online. However, read your contract carefully before signing to be sure that you won’t be paying more than the agreed quote. The same goes with the car bill of lading if you are hiring a car shipping company.

How Fast Can I Get Movers?

In normal circumstances, movers should be booked a month or two before the move. However, if you don’t have that kind of luxury, make sure to contact companies as soon as you realize that a move to another city is around the corner. Keep in mind that during the winter, movers are faced with lower demand for relocations. That means that reputable companies probably won’t have problems with fitting your relocation into their schedules. However, if you are relocating when it’s the peak of the season (April-September), you’ll probably have to go through several high-quality companies – most of them will be booked months in advance.


Get A Quote

Additional Services Will Become Your Lifesavers During the Last-Minute Move

Movers will be able to assist you not only with the relocation of your belongings but also with the other relocation-related activities and tasks. If you have to complete the relocation as fast as possible, the following services will allow you to move efficiently:

  • Packing service – if you are relocating your whole household, boxing up may take more than a few days to complete. However, if you hire professional packers, you won’t have to waste any hours gathering supplies and exploring relocation tips for wrapping and boxing up. Moreover, you won’t have to stress about whether your stuff is packed properly and whether there will be any unwanted surprises during the unpacking.
  • Car shipping service – if you wish to move a car to another state but not drive to your new destination, you’ll have to contact a USA auto transport company. However, the cheapest way to ship a car would be to find a relocation team that can provide you with both car shipping and relocation services. If you get both services, the company will most likely provide you with a better car shipping quote. All you will be left to do is decide between a more affordable open trailer option or safer but costlier enclosed auto transport. On the other hand, if you want to speed the process up further, choose door-to-door auto transport instead of terminal-to-terminal car shipping.
  • Storage service – when you are relocating out of state in a hurry and don’t know what to do with all of your stuff, having a storage unit where you’ll leave them for a certain period is a significant convenience.
usa auto transport truck
If you want to avoid lengthy travels in your car, a car shipping service is the answer

#3 Make Light Work of Packing When You Have a Short Deadline

What happens when you must perform all or some part of relocation alone and in a hurry? You become creative. Without last-minute moving help from long-distance movers, you must think of some ways to speed up all tasks, but especially the lengthy and dull boxing up process. Here are some packing tips for boxing up quickly:

  • Pack clothes as they are – yes, it would be best to iron them and fold them neatly, but sometimes you have to do what you have to do. That being said, put all hangers with clothes together, get some garbage bags for protection and cover your clothes.
  • Leave your things inside of dressers, cabinets, and drawers – just ensure that there are no fluids, breakables, or sharp objects that can damage your furniture.
  • Don’t complicate the labeling – although sorting things inside the boxes following some logic is desirable, it’s not necessary. Ensure to write the room’s name on the box and leave sorting and color coding for some other relocation.
  • Pack room by room – avoid running around like a headless chicken.

Declutter as an Answer for Cost-Efficiency

The golden rule of relocating in a hurry – the less you have to pack, the faster you’ll be done with it. And that is not all! If you decide to hire movers, know that you’ll get a better quote if you relocate fewer items. Remember that relocation companies usually charge by the weight of your inventory. So, if you want to save on relocation costs, don’t pack all you possess. Think about things you haven’t used for more than a year, broken things, and non-working appliances. Determine what to get rid of and then decide what to do with it. Selling your belongings both online or on a garage sale won’t work in this situation because it will take too long. So throw away items that are no longer usable and gift or donate the rest.

Ask Friends for Help With Packing When Moving to a New Home

When you are in this kind of situation, remember that you are not above begging. If you have friends or family members living close by, make promises, do some excessive eye blinking or become a drama queen/king. You’ll need all the assistance you can get, so make a boxing up party and ask your friends to drop off donation boxes. This way, you can be more productive and focus on other important tasks.

Two girls smiling while packing for cross-country moving
Having friends by your side will not only allow you to be more efficient but is likely to reduce your stress levels

#4 Homemade Supplies Will Save You More Than Enough Hours

Gathering all packing materials can be a long-lasting process and not a cheap one, for that matter. That is why you should think about how to use whatever you already have in your home. Note that newspapers, cotton shirts, towels, rugs, and socks can be excellent wrapping and padding materials. They can be used on the most delicate items, but you’ll have to learn some useful tricks about boxing them up and remain careful.

The same thing goes for the boxes. Instead of buying new ones, consider the following creative storage ideas:

  • Plastic containers, if you have them at your home
  • Laundry hampers
  • Decorative baskets
  • Plastic trash bags (just ensure that the material is strong enough).

And what about when you need strong storage space for delicate and fragile items? Run to your local stores and ask clerks for some boxes they no longer need. Remember that this is not a time to be picky – just gather as much as you can.

Shoes packed in the laundry basket before long-distance moving and auto transport
Think outside of the box (pun intended), and search for different kinds of storage spaces

#5 Set Aside Time for Notifying Others About the Move

The least of who to notify when relocating is extensive, but the good thing is that not all of it must be done before the move. However, changing your address on USPS’s website and contacting utility providers are not a part of things to do after relocation. By not updating the residency, you risk losing important mail. On the other hand, if you don’t transfer utilities promptly, you may end up with unneeded bills or, worse, without necessary utilities in your future home. Other parties (insurance providers, banks, and the like) have to be informed, too, but it can wait until after the move. Just don’t forget to contact them then.

A pink and red mailbox
If you want your mails to follow you, you must update the address

#6 Don’t Forget to Pack an Essential Box for Relocation Day

One of the things people forget to do when relocating is setting aside a box dedicated to relocation essentials. It should contain all that will help you survive the first day (and a few more) in your new home, such as a change of clothes, toiletries, medicine, documents, and alike. Having essentials by your side can reduce the amount of stress you’re feeling, so think about the box’s content thoroughly. And if you need some assistance with determining necessities, ensure to watch the following video:

YouTube video

#7 The Most Important of All Last-Minute Moving Tips – Don’t Panic

When you find out that you have to move in a hurry, your first instinct will be to panic. It’s perfectly normal, but don’t let yourself be consumed with it. You must make a conscious effort to and that state and get into organizing mode. Don’t get in a fluster, but focus all your thinking and energy on work that needs to be done. Only then will you stand a chance against this challenge. And by using our awesome tips, of course. We wish you the best of luck!

Get a Quote

    check mark
    Download as PDF

    Moving Checklist

    Get a Free Estimate 855.675.3451