11 hacks to take the stress out of moving house

child holding up cardboard boxes with toys written on front

Jenna Meade

Posted February 11, 2021

Take the stress out of moving house with these 11 clever transitioning tips.

You’ve ticked off something huge – renting or buying a house – but does the thought of moving have you just as stressed?

Moving house doesn’t need to move you to tears. With a little forward-planning and nifty organising knacks, you’ll be settling into your new home stress-free and ready to make new memories.

From packing the truck with Tetris precision to protecting your treasures, here’s how to successfully relocate your belongings – except for that emotional baggage.

11 easy tips for moving house

1. Stack for success

Organise your boxes by weight. Not only will you save your back by avoiding lifting a surprisingly heavy load, but you’ll be ready to pack the truck the minute it arrives. Place heavier boxes in the truck first but keep the smaller items on hand; they’re perfect for the little cubby holes that appear. When you’re left with your lighter items, be sure to strap them down or wedge them where they won’t slip and slide during the drive.

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2. Plan ahead

The last thing you want to do during your move is worry about the minor details. Change your address at least two weeks in advance, update your home and contents insurance and make sure you’ve arranged for your utilities to be connected before you move. Stockpile moving boxes ahead of time ready to be filled – you can usually pick these up for free from Coles, Woolworths or Bunnings. Don’t forget to give your new home a quick once-over the day before so it’s sparkling clean and ready for unpacking.

3. Out with the old...

Because you only want to be moving in with the new. Before you start packing, designate a donations area for your clothing and items you won’t be taking with you. Arrange for larger items to be collected by your local op shop’s furniture truck. If a piece of furniture won’t fit in your new home, give it a new one by donating it.


couple with child hanging picture on wall with moving boxes surrounding them

Save time, space, money and energy with these hacks.

4. Make it picture perfect

Once you’ve filled a box, snap a photo on your phone of its contents. You’ll save time – and tears – rifling through boxes at the other end. Same goes for your entertainment set-up. Take a photo of the wiring arrangement while plugged in, and label wires so you’ll be able to replug-in like a pro. Label your boxes on their sides, not the tops, so you can see what’s inside when they’re stacked, or opt for transparent plastic containers to beat the guessing game.

5. Enlist tech time-savers

More tech than manual? Download the free Moving Day app and organise your boxes with its handy barcode system. Enter an inventory of each box you pack and the app will create a barcode for it. When you’re ready to unpack, just scan the barcode to reveal its contents.

6. Break down big items

Dismantle furniture at least a day before your move. Mark where the pieces go with masking tape to make reassembling a breeze, and keep any screws or bolts in an envelope taped onto the largest part of the item.

7. Add protection

Lay down towels to not only protect your hardwood floors, but also your muscles. They’ll help furniture and large boxes slide much easier. However, if you do get scuff marks, simply cut a hole in a tennis ball, stick it to the end of your broom and rub the scuffing until it fades.

8. Hang in there

Save time by leaving your clothes on their hangers. Group them together and wrap them in large garbage bags for protection. Use white bags so you can clearly label them. No need to empty drawers, either. Simply roll up your clothes and cover each drawer with plastic wrap.


family of four unboxing items on a kitchen table

Moving house can be an exciting, enjoyable and exhausting time.

9. Use space wisely

Nooks and crannies are your best house-moving friend - and will protect your treasures, too. Keep cords under control by rolling up inside toilet paper rolls, stash your jewellery in egg cartons so it stays tangle-free and transport glasses in clean socks.

10. Make it mess-free

Keep your bathroom, kitchen and laundry liquids leak-free by removing their lids, taping their openings, then screwing the caps back on. Tape mirrors with an ‘x’ across the middle in masking tape to prevent breakage, and pop cotton balls in your cosmetics compacts to prevent shattering.

11. Arm the essentials

Chances are it’s going to be a few days before your home is unpacked and functional. Pack a small bag or suitcase filled with the essentials to see you through. You’ll need a couple of spare changes of clothes, toiletries, towels and sheets, phone chargers and any important documents and medications. A first-aid kit is also good to have on hand at all times.