Your college years will likely involve more moving than any other era of your life. From leaving home for the first time and switching residences every school year to traveling during the summer, studying abroad, and finally packing up one last time after graduation. With a little planning and preparation, moving in and moving out during college years can be as easy as a padded senior year schedule. Follow these college moving tips from our moving experts here at Stor-It, and check out affordable college storage at our many Idaho self-storage locations.
Moving Out Tips for College Students
No matter where you are or where you’re going, before you can move in you have to move out. Whether you’re heading out of your childhood home for the first time, leaving the dorms in search of greener pastures, or escaping that group house before the start of your senior year, you’ll want to make all the right moves to make moving out a breeze. These tips will help you out.
Make A List
The moment you start the moving process, make a list – or several. You’ll be surprised at how easily you can lose track of your belongings. Start by taking an inventory of all of your important items, to make sure you have everything. Before you begin the moving out process in earnest, make another list of all of the things you have to so you can fit them into your schedule with as little stress as possible.
Invest in Moving Boxes — And Label Them
No move is complete without moving boxes. Simple, spacious, and stackable, these cardboard containers are the cornerstones of moving and storage. They can be purchased with other packing supplies at many storage and rental centers, usually in a variety of sizes. Moving boxes help keep items protected during a move. They also make carrying items and stacking them in your moving van, self-storage unit, or final destination, much easier. Most importantly, moving boxes keep your items organized — as long as you label them.
To label your moving boxes, invest in a few markers (and if you plan on reusing the boxes for different purposes, some labels or tape). Use the markers to write out the contents of your boxes on their exteriors or on the labels you’ve purchased. Make sure your writing is visible and legible.
Don’t Be Afraid to Donate
Moving to college is almost always an exercise in downsizing. When you get to the dorms for the first time, you may be surprised at how “cozy” they are. Your freshman year dorm room will likely be a fraction of the square footage of your bedroom at home, and you may have to share it with a roommate. When you finally get that single dorm room or that off-campus apartment or house, you’ll still likely be living with other people — and you might not have a garage or extra closet to store your excess stuff. Thus, downsizing is your simplest solution. Take only the essentials when moving out for college. Learn more about your new dorm or apartment (see #7 on this list), so you get in idea of how much space you ultimately have to work with. As you begin to downsize, don’t be afraid to donate. When you donate, your excess goods go to a good cause. Plus, they’re taken off your hands without hassle. In the end, having less stuff can save you time and headache during your college move.
Clean Your Room
We know — one of the big benefits of going to college is to escape your parents telling you to “clean your room.”. However, as it turns out cleaning your room is an essential step of moving out. Whether you’re leaving your parents’ home, switching dorms, or moving out, cleaning your room will make your move exponentially easier. For one, giving your room a thorough clean will help you find any items you may have misplaced or simply forgotten to account for. Also, if you’re moving out of a dorm, apartment, or rental, cleaning your room will help you earn your deposit back and avoid any penalty fees from your school or landlord.
Pack a Day-Of Bag for Easy Access to Essentials
When you move out, you pack up all of your stuff. This obvious feature of the moving process can become a problem when you have to access your stuff during a move. For instance, it can be a hassle to find your toothbrush nestled deep within one of ten moving boxes. To save yourself time and trouble, pack a day-of bag filled with your essentials. Self-care products, medications, keys, a change of clothes (or two), snacks, and anything else you need on a daily basis should go in this bag. It will be a lifesaver at the end of a long day of moving.
Invest in Self Storage
When your new space doesn’t have enough room for all of your belongings, and you don’t want to donate, self-storage is your solution. When you are stuck between spaces for the summer and need a place to store your stuff, self-storage is your solution. When your parents are finally threatening to get rid of all of your collectibles back at home — you guessed it: self-storage is your best bet. Self-storage units are rented spaces used by tenants to house belongings for a fee. Many self-storage facilities offer affordable pricing and flexible contracts for college students in search of short-term or long-term storage. Units typically start a 5’ x 5’ in size and go up to 10’ x 30’ options at some facilities. Self-storage is an excellent option if you are looking to for a way to house your items during a move.
Moving In Tips for College Students
With the legwork of moving out now out of the way, it’s time to focus on the fun part: moving in. Though exciting, in the infamous “move-in day” at college is always a bit of a logistical nightmare. Between the crowds, the confusing campus grounds, and the endless piles of stuff, it can be difficult to move-in without hitting at least a few snags. Take the following steps to simplify your move-in day and have fun in the process.
Get Information on Your New Space
The first step to successfully moving in is getting information on your new space. For college students, this is especially important, as living arrangements at college can vary considerably. To start things off, find out the square footage of your place and how many roommates (if any) you’ll have. This will give you a better idea of how much stuff you can bring. Also determine whether your space is furnished or unfurnished, as this will play a significant role in what you bring with you on move-in day. Does your building have AC? If not, pack a fan (or two). Does your room have an attached bathroom, or will you be using communal ones with the entire floor? If it’s the latter, pack a bathroom tote and slides. How far is your room from important areas on campus? If the distance is great enough, you may want to consider bringing a bike, scooter, or car. Asking and answering these questions and others about your space will help make your move much easier.
Arrive Early and Dress Appropriately
Few events are filled with more bustle than a college move-in day. Moving your stuff into a new space is hard enough without the crowds, commotion, and general chaos that comes with move-in day at the start of a new school year. To minimize your struggle and gridlock among the rest of the student body, try to arrive as early as possible on move-in day. You might be tempted to “dress to impress,” but opting for comfortable, athletic clothing is the superior choice. Carrying and unpacking a full room’s worth of items may not be back-breaking, but you might just break a sweat. Dress for the occasion, and change into your street clothes once you’ve unpacked and put your new room together.
Clean — Again
There’s no telling what kinds of dirt, dust, and debris lurk inside college residences. Even the most well-maintained spaces often sit empty for weeks or months at a time before welcoming new residents. Empty spaces can accumulate everything from bacteria to bugs, dust bunnies to mold, and more. When moving into a new dorm, apartment, or other residence, give it a thorough wash using whatever cleaning supplies you have on hand. Disinfectants are a must, and a good vacuum is highly recommended for carpeted spaces. We also recommend performing a second round of cleaning after you’ve unpacked. After all, your belongings have been packed in moving boxes and may have been sitting in storage for a considerable period of time. During this time (and during your move), they may have invited some unwanted invaders. As you set up your space, wipe everything down to avoid extra dust and prevent a potential infestation.
When in Doubt, Ask for Assistance
Moving in and moving out of college isn’t always a one-person job. Depending on the amount of stuff you have, the distance you have to travel, and a host of other factors, you may need help to get everything completed. If you feel like you’ve bitten off more than you can chew with your move, don’t be afraid to ask for assistance. Most of the time, friends and family will be more than willing to help you for an afternoon or two — as long as you give them a bit of notice.
You can also go the professional route. Hiring a moving company is an excellent choice if you are dealing with a large number of items that would be impractical to move with your own two hands and your commuter car. Professional movers have extensive experience handling items large and small. In most cases, they come with moving trucks capable of moving your goods from Point A to Point B in one go. (If you only need the truck and not the movers, you can always rent a U-Haul vehicle.) Plus, working with a reputable moving company will insure your items against damage, giving you precious peace of mind during your move.
Simplify College Moving With Stor-It
Moving for college shouldn’t have to be a struggle. At Stor-It, we have the resources and expertise to help make your next college move pain-free, fast, and even fun. If you have questions about college moving that you didn’t see answered here, contact us to speak with a member of our team directly. You can also visit our Storage FAQ and Storage Tips page for general advice on self-storage. Looking to invest in self-storage to help with your college move? Head over to our Locations page to explore the many excellent self-storage options we have at our Idaho self-storage facilities.