Moving home is a big deal, often cited as being up there with divorce and bereavement as one of life’s most stressful events. However, it doesn’t need to be that way if you plan ahead and get yourself prepared well in advance.
It also helps if you know the potential pratfalls or ‘fails’ and how to successfully swerve them.
Here, leaning on research carried out among 2,000 recent movers, we reveal the most common disasters which caused them stress before, during and after their big move and how you can avoid them being issues for you come moving day.
Furniture issues and tardy removal vans
Some of the most common fails Brits face on moving day are damaged furniture, scratched walls and late removal vans, the research revealed.
Overall, half of homeowners said they have experienced a ‘fail’ on moving day, while the study also revealed that one in three have had furniture delivered only to find it won’t fit through the door.
What’s more, a quarter have had a box break on them, spilling its contents everywhere, while one in 10 have even lost the keys to their new property before they arrived at their new home.
As a result of the worry and stress involved with the build-up to moving day, one in eight movers suffered a sleepless night ahead of their move.
Joy Richards, spokesperson for Happy Beds, which commissioned the research, said that while moving home can be an incredibly exciting time, it can also be extremely stressful.
“There are countless things that can go wrong, and it can feel as if you’re spinning plates trying to make sure everything goes to plan,” she said.
“It’s really important, before moving, to plan ahead well in advance and get a great night’s sleep before the big day to put yourself in the best frame of mind.”
What are other possible fails?
The research found that a third of respondents find pieces of furniture broken in transit once they reach the other side during moving day, while 24% also discovered too late that the previous owners of their home hadn’t totally finished moving out.
The single-worst part of moving home, unsurprisingly, was packing up the house, followed by the stress leading up to moving day itself.
One in three, meanwhile, can’t bear the admin involved with changing addresses on forms and setting up new bills.
Wardrobes, as you might expect, were voted as the single worst item to move from one house to another, with sofas and delicate items such as vases or mirrors also featuring prominently on this list.
How can you avoid moving day fails?
The average Brit, who has moved home five times in their life so far, can help to keep moving day stress to a minimum by finding ways to take the pressure off and reduce the chances of things going wrong.
Having professional support, for example, can really help with peace of mind when moving home. If you opt for the professional approach, it’s a good idea to shop around for the best deals, getting quotes from a number of firms and recommendations from friends, family and online review sites to ensure you are getting the best possible help.
Make sure that any firm you use are members of the British Association of Removers (BAR) – that way you know you are definitely getting a reputable firm and won’t be left wanting or waiting on the big day. Additionally, it’s advisable to book your removal firm at least a fortnight before moving, just in case, while there are certain days of the week where fees are likely to be lower.
If you opt for the DIY approach, make sure you hire a large enough van for all your possessions to save on the number of trips you have to do between houses, and make sure you’re aware of the parking arrangements and width of the roads at your new address to prevent any issues with parking and manoeuvring vans.
Whether you opt for the professional or DIY approach, having the support of family and friends during moving day is likely to be crucial. To make sure the house move goes smoothly, delegate tasks to supportive friends and family and try and ensure the whole process is as simple and straightforward as possible, from start to finish. So, pack well in advance, label thoroughly and strategically, delegate effectively, take regular breaks, have tea, coffee, water and snacks on tap, and try and keep a lid on your emotions throughout.
Also, if you have kids or pets, send them elsewhere on moving day as they are only likely to add a further layer of stress to what is already a busy and potentially slightly chaotic day.
You may also want to unpack fairly soon after moving in to avoid putting it off for too long. The sooner it’s done, the sooner you can make your new house feel like a home.
The top 20 most common moving fails, according to the research, can be seen below:
1. Damaged furniture
2. Scratched walls
3. Not being able to fit an item through the door
4. Not being able to manoeuvre furniture up/down the stairs
5. Not being able to manoeuvre furniture around a corner
6. Boxes breaking and the contents spilling out everywhere
7. The previous residents not clearing up - or leaving things behind
8. The house not being ready
9. Not having everything packed up in time
10. Delicate possessions breaking
11. Removal van showing up late
12. Lost boxes
13. Feeling ill on the big day
14. Friends who were meant to help cancelled last minute
15. Losing keys
16. Car/van breaking down
17. Problems picking up a rental van
18. Removal van getting completely lost
19. Keys breaking in the door
20. Getting lost and not being able to find the new home.
While some of these are unavoidable or out of your control, there are things you can do to keep these fails to a minimum and reduce your stress levels on moving day.
Here at Balgores Property Group, we recently outlined a simple checklist people need to consider before moving home.
To find out more about the various services we offer throughout East London, Essex and Kent, please get in contact with us at one of our many branches.
If you would like to see how much your home could be worth on the current market, you can request a free and instant online valuation.