Moving into a new apartment is equal parts stressful and exciting. It is an exciting experience to live in a new space, especially when you find one that suits your needs. The stress comes in when you have so much to do in order to get settled, with so many boxes to unpack and so much to organize to make your new place feel like home.
How long does it take to move into your new apartment? The time it will take you to move depends on the size of the apartment as well as the size of your belongings. A professional moving truck company provide these general timelines:
- Studio or one-bedroom apartment: 2-3 hours
- Two-bedroom apartment: 3-4 hours
- Three or four-bedroom apartment: 4-7 hours
Although moving to a new apartment can be demanding, there are some steps you can take to make the whole process a lot easier and efficient.
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Steps to make the whole process a lot easier and efficient
1. Conduct an inspection
You might be tempted to move in your belongings as soon as you arrive at your new apartment to speed things up, but you will probably end up regretting this decision in the future. The first thing you should do is to conduct a thorough inspection of every room in the apartment. The previous tenant might have left some damage that went unnoticed by the landlord, and you definitely don’t want to pay for something that isn’t your fault. An inspection is also important to help you ensure that everything is working. Here are some pointers for conducting an inspection:
- Test the security features, including alarm systems, locks, and bolts
- Check light fixtures, electrical outlets, and plumbing to confirm their functionality
- Check window and door locks
- Take a picture of every room in the apartment, especially any noticeable damages that you find.
2. Deal with utilities
To set up your move, ensure that the utilities of your previous apartment have been canceled. A few days before moving into the new apartment, set up your new utilities. This is essential in speeding up the process of moving in and settling in your new space. Below is a summary of how to deal with utilities when you move:
Get accounts for gas, electric, water, sewer, and garbage utilities set up. Some landlords will include some of these utilities in the rent, so it is important to find out exactly what you are paying for beforehand.
Request information regarding the companies that take care of the various utilities. If the average cost of utilities is not included in the lease, simply ask the landlord for the figures. Other optional utilities such as internet and cable should also be set up a few days before you move in.
3. Clean before unpacking
Your new landlord should have already cleaned up your apartment before you move in, but you’ll probably feel more at home if you do it yourself. You will find it much easier to clean the apartment when there are no boxes stacked everywhere. Furthermore, the cleaning process will help you get to know your new living space as well as perform an inspection for what might be faulty. Vacuum floors, wipe down mirrors and windows, dust, and finally disinfect the kitchen and bathroom to be on the same side.
4. Move your belongings to their designated rooms
By the time you get to your new apartment with all the heavy boxes and furniture, you may be too exhausted to move everything around, opting to leave drop everything in the front room. However, this will only slow down your moving in process. Instead, unload your belongings and place them directly into the designated rooms. This will make the process of unpacking and arranging everything much easier.
5. Make your bed
Making your bed may not seem like the most urgent thing to do when you move into a new apartment, but by the end of the day, the only thing you will have in mind is sleep. One of the first items you should move to its designated area is your bed. Proceed to prepare it as best as you can so that after a long day, you could easily flop down in bed and get some much-deserved rest.
6. Focus on the essentials
As you unpack, consider giving top priority to items that are essential for you to function around your home. For example, access to your toiletries on your daily basis is important, so you should start the process of unpacking in your bathroom. This will probably not take too long because bathrooms are compact areas with relatively fewer items. You may also feel the need to have to eat something along the way, so maybe work on unpacking in the kitchen next. There are usually more items to arrange in the kitchen so it might take you some time, but as long as you have everything in an easily accessible place, you should be fine.
7. Move on to the living spaces
With all your essentials in place, you can finally turn your attention to the living room and dining room area. Consider starting with your furniture, putting together any pieces that need to be assembled. Put up your artwork and personal pictures as well to make your new place feel like home. Keep in mind that you don’t have to complete unpacking everything or decorate immediately, so as long as you can function within these spaces, you can spruce it up in the future.
8. Forward your mail
Usually, filling out the paperwork for forwarding your mail is done before you move, but it is not uncommon to overlook this step. To change your address, you have to contact USPS. The process is simple since it is done online. All you have to do is enter your new address, confirm whether your new address is temporary or permanent, select whether it is an individual or family address, and finally select the date to have your email forwarded. The forward date is usually the day you move in.
Remember to update your address with your bank, credit card, and subscriptions, and don’t forget to let your loved ones know too.
9. How will you be paying the bills?
Landlords tend to ask for a deposit for rent before you move in, but you’ll probably have to pay for the bills separately. Some landlords require you to drop off a physical check every month, but if you are lucky, you’ll enjoy the convenience of paying through an online portal. Remember to sign up for the specified account so that you can access your monthly statements on time.
Personalizing your apartment
Once you have everything in place, you can finally add your personal touch to your new apartment. A few ideas that you can put to use in your new apartment include:
1. Removable wallpaper – Some landlords have put restrictions in place that limit their tenants from painting, and if this is your case, there are other alternatives such as removable wallpaper. Currently, there is a wide variety of high-quality wallpapers in the market that will greatly improve the look of your apartment. All you have to do is find one that suits your taste.
2. Play with lighting – Changing up your lighting can have a great impact on the ambiance of your new apartment. Experiment with a geometric chandelier or a pendant light to completely transform the aesthetic of your living space.
3. Invest in a rug or two – If your kitchen or bedroom floors are less than perfect, you could easily cover them up with a colorful rug. There are so many styles to choose from, and finding one that perfectly showcases your personality shouldn’t be too hard to do.
4. Replace outdated fixtures – Fixtures that simply don’t go with the vibe of your apartment can be an eyesore. Though you definitely want to refer to the restrictions provided in your lease, landlords usually don’t have a problem if you substitute door handles, faucets or drawer pulls, just as long as you replace them when you move out.
5. Curtains for your windows – If your apartment is slightly cramped, you can use long curtains to maximize your visual space by making your windows appear longer and the ceiling seem higher.
6. Don’t shy away from accessorizing – There are many different ways you can accessorize your apartment. Accessories you can use include vases, plants, art pieces, and many more. Let your taste guide you here.
- What do I need to do before I move? – Manage your packing smartly, remembering to label all the boxes according to the designated room. Remember to call the utility companies as well to set up a service switch as soon as you are assured of your new apartment.
- Do I need a job to get an apartment? – In order to move into an apartment, you need to provide proof of income, and you will also be required to have good credit and a steady job. If you have an unconventional source of income or you don’t have a job, finding an apartment can be challenging.