Monday 14 October 2019

Moving house - what I've learnt this time around

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When we first bought a house - the very one we live in now some 13 years later - I was (a lot) younger, didn't really understand how mortgages worked (still don't) and remained blissfully unaware of a lot of the things that go with the whole process.

Fast-forward to today, and it's been a real roller-coaster of an experience, with so much to take on board - and now, as we approach completion, an awful lot of stuff that needs shifting!

We were a young couple when we first got our house and this move sees us taking our two boys (obviously) along with our dog, two cats and two rabbits on to a bigger house around 14 miles further north than where we currently live, ready to start the next chapter of our family life.

Ste couldn't resist starting packing a few weeks' back and to be honest, he had the right idea as life is, as ever, busy and when you start looking in cupboards and under the stairs and in the loft, it's actually pretty frightening just how much stuff we have accumulated.

And that's after several clothes culls, toy sort outs and a big sort out of the loft in the past year or so.

I have no doubt that we will be filling our new home in next to no time.

Here are a few things I have learnt from going through the whole moving house process as far as we have:

  • Expect the unexpected - you could be thinking about seeing what's on the market one minute, then finding out two buyers are in a bidding war over your property, so you may just sell quicker than you think.

  • It will take as long as it takes - you're going to need the patience of a saint over the weeks ahead, as your entire financial life story is picked apart and every part of your lifestyle examined as you go through applications then provide a small forest's worth of paperwork before completing the same amount again in documentation - and all at the mercy of the post, and solicitors work time-frames, so even when things are progressing smoothly, those weeks keep on ticking by.

  • You have far too much stuff - it's never too early to start clearing the clutter; at the end of the day, nobody wants to have to shift things around from one place onto a truck and back off again, only to wonder when it comes the time to unpack it, why on earth you kept it in the first place. Be ruthless - if it's slightly chipped or missing a part, chuck it. If you haven't used it or forgot it altogether, donate it. If you'd be better off with starting afresh, recycle it.

  • Best laid plans don't often go to plan - sometimes move dates get pushed back, sometimes there's delays that can't be avoided. One way to ensure your belongings are safe and sound is to look into self storage. It's a great idea if you have more things than space, or items you just don't need close to hand all year round. My Mum, for instance, moved house a year ago to a whole new region, but the sale took a few extra weeks than she'd planned, so self storage was a lifesaver for her.

Companies such as Shurgard Self-Storage Kensington are there to lighten the load and just make life a lot easier when it comes to dealing with your stuff. Whether you’re putting your things in storage during the university holidays, moving house like us or need somewhere to store your stock for your growing online business, Shurgard Kensington has the solution - they even offer great value units that are cheaper than the normal price - ideal for storing your winter tires or a few storage boxes.

As someone on the cusp of moving (aiming for end of the month - keep those fingers crossed!), their packing tips and moving checklist are also useful references. 

The house is getting more bare by the day and we have growing towers of cardboard boxes here and there, so the end is getting closer - wish us luck for as stress-free a move as possible...!


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