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Six steps to an easy, stress-free unpacking experience

Moving can be a daunting experience. Aside from the stress of finding a suitable place and securing a rental agreement, the physical act of moving your possessions from one location to another is stressful! The possible missteps are endless. You could forget to pack that old tool box in your utility closet, mislabel a box, or most common, something flat out gets lost in the shuffle; there’s a lot to think about!  Once you finally get all of your stuff packed in tight you’ve still got to figure out how to unpack your new apartment.

But don’t worry! As long as you prioritize, stay focused, and don’t procrastinate, there’s no reason the stress of moving has to quell the excitement over your new place. Smith and Burns is here to help. Not only do our Wallingford Apartments provide a ton of space to accommodate all sorts of arrangements, we’ve taken the time to put together a few of our best apartment cleaning and unpacking tips so you can hit the ground running as soon as you move in!

1. Pack with Purpose

It may sound counter-intuitive, but the best unpacking tip we can give is to pack properly beforehand. There are plenty of blogs and online resources that’ll break down how best to pack for a move, but it basically comes down to prioritization and organization. If you organize your boxes and bags by room, and  each box by priority, you’ll save a ton of time with your unpacking. Make sure to label everything by room and contents. Then, when it comes to unpacking your new apartment, the first step will just be getting each box to the right room.

2. Clean

It’s often said that the state of your room reflects the state of your mind, and the same is true of your apartment when unpacking. If you’re moving into a lived in space before it’s been properly cleaned, then you’ve got to bite the bullet and tidy up! Cleaning your new apartment before you unpack and organize allows you to aesthetically start off on the right foot. You can organize without clutter to get a sense of your ideal arrangement. But more than that, it gives you a strong sense of the functionality of your space. As you clean, ask yourself: how easy will it be to clean in here once the room is all filled up? What’s the best use of space? Questions like these will give you a jumpstart on organizing your new apartment before you even unpack. While this tip is an important one, it may not apply to you if you choose to live in a community like Smith and Burns where every unit is professionally cleaned prior to your arrival. Not all apartments out there provide this level of service, and will require a good scrub down before you unpack and organize.

3. Unpack Sooner Rather Than Later

Once you’re in your new home, you may wonder how long you should wait to unpack after moving. Their answer is simple: as little time as humanly possible. Procrastination is the enemy of a stress-free move-in, even though it’s the popular thing to do. Do yourself a favor and avoid a lengthy unpacking process. Not only will it take much longer to get settled and feel comfortable in your new apartment, the layout, and organization of your space is bound to suffer eventually if you wait too long to unpack. You can organize at whatever speed you choose, but unpacking should be done swiftly. If you’re looking to fall in love with your new apartment, give yourself the best possible chance of doing so by unpacking sooner rather than later.

4. Order Of Operations

Prioritization is the key for unpacking a new apartment quickly and efficiently. And it’s not as hard as you may think. Some say prioritizing essential and nonessential items is the way to go, but unless you’ve already done that with your packing, this can take hours. We recommend hanging on to this simple rule of thumb: out to in, big to small. That’s it! Start with the edges of each room, unpacking and organizing the bigger items in your load, like furniture and appliances, first. Once those are in there general resting places (don’t worry about perfect organization yet) then you can begin to unpack the smaller items like bedding, linens, clothes, toiletries, and accessories. This simple top down approach to unpacking your new apartment will allow you to unbox most of your stuff relatively quickly, which is your biggest hurdle. Once it’s out of the box, you’re able to decorate and organize your space more carefully.

5. Form Follows Function

It’s absolutely fine to start thinking about the organization of your apartment prior to moving in. In fact, it’s one of the more exciting parts of moving! Pinterest is alive with tips and tricks for decorating your apartment, but don’t let decoration become your top priority as you begin to unpack. Remember the top down approach we discussed in our last tip. It’s inefficient to start thinking about organizing the smaller items in your load before you’ve dealt with the bigger ones; inevitably something will have to rearranged and you’ll end up wasting time. The same is true with decoration. Remember this tip for unpacking your new apartment: Form follows function. Think about the functionality of your space before you consider it’s aesthetics. Some aspects of your apartment will preclude certain decorations; you can’t hang a painting without first understanding if you need that wall space for a dresser, for example.

6. Organize As You Go

Remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Sure, it is crucial that you do not procrastinate with your unpacking. Get the stuff out of the boxes and get rid of all the cardboard, first and foremost. There’s no need to have everything completely organized on your first day, or even in the first week of living in your new apartment. In fact, some say decorating too quickly is one of the major mistakes committed by new homeowners. Making a house into home is a work in progress. Having said that, it’s impossible to sufficiently organize and decorate your space if you wait too long to get unpacked. There’s no right way to organize and decorate an apartment, that’s for sure. But there is one rule you’ve got to follow: unpack quickly so that you have the time and freedom to organize and decorate without clutter.    

You won’t have an easier time unpacking a new apartment than at Smith and Burns in Wallingford, Seattle. All of our floorplans provide ample space to support all sorts of arrangements for a variety of lifestyles. From the application process to unpacking, we strive to make life a bit easier for our tenants. If you’re looking for an apartment rental in Seattle that’ll provide you with a quick and easy move-in, choose Smith and Burns.

Apply today!

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