5 Tips for Moving Across State Lines

Friday, September 23, 2016

In the middle of August we made the move from our little apartment in Chicago to a little yellow house in Dayton, OH. This was the first time I’ve packed up an apartment without my momma’s or my brothers’ help (although they couldn’t get out of the unpacking), but George and I developed a pretty good system and survived a move across two states.

As we were moving, we kept a list of all things we want to remember for the next move. Because moving doesn’t have to be the worst thing ever!


  1. DIY, but not everything. If you can hack it, don’t fool around with those crazy-expensive “all-inclusive” movers. When we first started looking for movers, we were quoted $6,500 for our move. Heck, no, we won’t go. We decided to go for the much cheaper option of renting a truck and hiring help on both ends. We still hired professionals to help us load and unload the truck, and although we had to drive the truck ourselves (read: George drove the truck himself), we saved over $5,000.
  2. Get more than you think you need. More tape, more boxes, more truck, more furniture pads. When you put in your house size on Uhaul, it gives you the estimated size truck you’ll need. DON’T TRUST IT. We got the next size up from what they recommended, and our stuff juuuuuust fit. Also – I ended up running to Walgreens mid-move to buy more tape because our movers used to wrap all of our furniture in the furniture pads (we rented more of those than we thought we needed too, and used all of them).
  3. Craiglist. We got tons of free boxes from Craigslist and bought some super cheap wardrobe boxes and Rubbermaid bins that saved our lives. There are always people on Craigslist trying to get rid of moving boxes either free or much cheaper than fancy new boxes that you just want to recycle anyway.
  4. Clean as you go. Wipe down cabinets as you pack, keep out the vacuum cleaner so you can vacuum a room as the movers clear it, put a bin full of cleaning supplies in your closet so it’s the last thing to go out. After our movers finished loading the truck, we didn’t want to leave it in the alley for long. I finished a quick run through of the house and then we were out of there! Cleaning as we packed and moved saved us so much time in the end.
  5. Prep. Before the movers came the morning of our move, we moved all of the boxes into a central location in our apartment (which, I know, would be totally crazy if you lived in a larger house/had more stuff than we do). We also took apart big pieces of furniture (like disassembling our bed frame and taking off our dining room table legs) the night before so we didn’t have to worry about the frustration/time suck of doing that the same morning.

Bonus. Tip your movers! Get cash beforehand and make sure its accessible. Our movers on both ends of our move worked so hard to get everything done quickly and make sure all of our stuff got there in one piece. If they do an awesome job like ours, make sure to put their names in your phone so you can write a review later!


3 thoughts on “5 Tips for Moving Across State Lines

  1. Thanks for sharing! Moving Can be a hassle, but you’re so right! It doesn’t have to be 👍 What moves did you use here in town? I’m always looking for great people to recommend/hire😊 Can you send me their contact info & name of the lead guy? Thanks! Glad you’re back, safe & sound!
    Ps. Loved your last post, on boundaries. It was so awesome!

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