Post-Graduation MovesMarch 3rd, 2015
Many people find their first jobs right after undergrad. Most move to a new city, find an apartment, and begin their working lives. While it’s usually easy to find friends and family to help you move to college, often you are on our own when moving out. This is a big time in your life, a stressful one at that, and completing this list of things will alleviate the stress of this crazy time.
Moving Out of Your College Town
Moving Company/Rental Truck: Hire a moving company or reserve a rental truck first thing, especially in a college town. You and everybody else are looking for a truck to rent. Make sure you get one first.
Cleaning Your Apartment: With finals, graduation, your new job, and your lease running out, it will likely be the case that you will be packing all your things in a couple days, maybe even less. But don’t neglect your apartment, dorm, or student housing. They will have no problems fining you for an unkempt apartment. While it is hard to fully clean a place you will never see again, it was part of the lease agreement, and there is no point throwing away good money when all you need to do is a couple hours of cleaning.
College Furniture: If you have furniture, consider how closely you are tied to it. You are a professional now, and it might be time to jettison that old college furniture. Also, it will be cheaper and easier to move to your new city without having to rent a bigger truck for all of your old furniture.
Carpet Cleaning: If your carpet is a mess, and it is up to you to make it right, hire a carpet cleaning service to remedy all the spills and stains in your carpet.
Light Bulbs: Remember to replace all the light bulbs that have burnt out. This is part of most leases, so be sure to do this.
Locating Boxes: If you are looking to locate some cheap boxes, bars and liquor stores always have the best ones. Because of the weight of what is going in their boxes is so heavy, they are built to be sturdy. So don’t worry about books or other heavy objects breaking them.
*Most Important Thing* Find a sticker for your car that shows that you are an alum. This is a great way to meet people, and also might help if another alum spots you having car trouble.
Packing for the Road
Packing Bikes: Visit a bike shop for a box to pack your bike.
Heavy Boxes: Sit all boxes of books and heavy stuff on the floor so that lighter boxes can go on top.
Stacking Breakables: Find a place on the floor for breakables so that they can’t fall off of anything.
Rental Truck Emergency Kit: Buy some windshield wiper fluid, anti-freeze or coolant, and motor oil. This truck will be pulling a heavy load and it might need more than just gas to get there.
Buy a Lock: Buy a lock so that you can secure the back door to your truck.
Road Supplies: Make a list of things that you want to have in the car with you, either to eat, drink, or occupy your mind.
Lodging Reservations: If you will be stopping in an area with many lodging choices, it is best to grab a room when you arrive to get the best price. But if you don’t want to drive around looking for places, then reserve a room in advance. If you are camping in a state park, it is best to reserve a space before you leave.
Always Double-Check: Double-check reservations at campgrounds, hotels, motels, Aunt Jane’s just to be on the safe side.
Road Trip Essentials: If you are renting a moving trucks, know that they are only equipped with the barest essentials, often without a tape deck or CD player, sometimes even without FM radio. Check your particular truck and decide if you can travel that far without some good tunes. Buying a small radio or MP3 player might be a good investment.
Consider Unloading: If you can, pack such that what you want to come off first is put on last. Mainly items that will be going upstairs or toward the back of the house should be loaded last, so they can come off first.
Towing a Vehicle: If you are towing a vehicle behind your rental truck, make sure the trailer has a working tow package. This means that the brake lights, tail lights, blinkers, and trailer brakes are all in working order.
Parking Your Rental Truck: If you are traveling on multiple nights, make sure to park your truck smartly. Find a wall or a tree or some otherwise immovable place where you can back the truck right up close. This way, if someone happens to break into your truck, they won’t be able to get many items out.
Moving In: If you have items that will just go into storage in your new home, such as in the basement or in a closet, be sure to take these boxes straight there. Don’t just drop off boxes right inside the door because it’s easy. Take them where they need to go because you will end up stepping over them throughout moving day.
One Extra Day: It is a smart idea to compare the pricing difference if you kept the truck one extra day. People often underestimate how draining the whole moving process can be, and if you are hurrying all day so that you can return the truck by five, you will most likely make extra work on yourself by not moving the right things to the right room. Find out what it would be worth to you to be able to take breaks, work at a nice pace, and take the truck back the next day. It could be such a small amount that it will be worth it to pay for the extra time and have the option to be tired and work smartly.
Gas up the Truck: Be sure to take the rental truck back with a full tank of gas, as they will charge you an extraordinary amount per gallon if they have to fill it.
Odds & Ends
Thrift Store: Make a trip to a thrift store to give away clothes and shoes that you don?t wear anymore. Remember to get receipts and write-off forms for the value of what was donated.
Find Home for Plants: Most plants cannot handle the extreme environments they are placed in during a move. If you really care about your plants, find them a good home.
Shut Off Utilities: Set up a time to shut off your utilities, phone, cable, and internet.
Cell Phone: Have your cell phone number changed to the appropriate city.
Close Bank Accounts: If you bank with a national bank, it might be the case that you won’t need to close down your current one. You can just change the account to your new city.
Dry Cleaning: Don’t forget to pick up your dry cleaning.
Tip for Efficient Travel: If you are moving yourself, pack foods that have high-water content like grapes, oranges, apples, etc. These foods will keep you hydrated so that you don’t have to drink so many liquids. This will reduce the number of times you will have to stop for restroom breaks and will keep you on the road.
Change of Address: File a change of address form with the post office. Also change your address with credit cards, memberships, magazines, netflix, etc. Cancel your newspaper subscription if you are moving out of the area.
Reserve the Elevator: If you are moving into a high-rise apartment, reserve use of an elevator (where possible) so that you are not constantly waiting on each load.
Apartment Walk-Through: Make sure that you make note of all the problems in your apartment when you move in so that you aren’t held accountable for them when you move out.
Moving Related Items
Set Up Utilities: Call to have your utilities turned on the day before you arrive at your new place. Don’t forget cable and internet.
Appraisal of Current Needs: Before you even think about moving things that you don’t even want anymore, consider if you have anything that needs to be replaced. Why move an old mattress when you could have a brand new one waiting in your new home? Think about other large items that will be difficult to transport and consider buying the item new in your new city.
Medical Records: Grab medical records from your school, if you have any.
Open Bank Accounts: Some banks have a painless transfer of accounts, although with others it can be a complete mess. Be prepared for the mess, and be pleasantly surprised if one doesn’t happen.
Return Library Books/Rented Videos: If you happen to leave town without taking care of this, you most likely will forget once you are in a new place. This is an annoying task, but not as annoying as the fine that will accrue if you don’t take care of this before you go.
Prepare Your Car for the Road: Have your vehicle serviced (oil change, rotate tires, etc.). Do this as early as you can in case the mechanics find something that will require you to come back for a second visit.
No More Groceries: Don’t go to the grocery store for anything other than essentials. The idea is to begin paring down your food supply so that you have less to move and less to throw away.
Music Scene: Search for the music scene in your new location to find out if there are concerts you want to see soon after you arrive.
*All the Things You Will Miss* Visit all the restaurants, parks, theaters, shops, and anything else that you will not have access to once you move. End your time in this town and on this campus on the best note possible. Do the things you enjoy.