Melbourne, Miscellaneous Intrigue, Perth
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Frenchtoastandindiepop’s potentially helpful guide to moving interstate


So you’re moving interstate, well done you! Having recently attempted this myself I have some helpful hints and tips, otherwise known as the things I learnt not to do, having already done them…

Perth to Melbs – the West to East journey

Before you leave:

There’s loads of things you’ll need to do before you leave so I’ll just try and give you some of the most important things.

  • Do a reconnaissance – scout out your intended neighbourhood before you make the big move. What is the area like? Is there easy access to public transport, supermarkets and any other services you need like Physio? What’s the average price for rentals and how does this vary?
  • As a foodie I highly recommend you get an idea of local eateries and coffee scene before you settle on a neighbourhood! If you need a specialty coffee to start your day you probably won’t be as happy in a location that doesn’t have a suitable shop in a reasonable distance.
  • What about work? Do you want to have a job lined up before you leave or are you going to wing it?
  • Accomodation – if renting will you apply before your move date or try your luck when your arrive? Who will be on the lease as those people will need to apply in person after viewing the property? Do you have a temporary place to stay if you need it? How long can you last without permanent accommodation?
  • Removals – if you’re moving furniture, clothes or anything else how are you going to do it? I can assure you that cheap is usually cheap for a reason when it comes to removalists so do your research! Get quotes and be specific in the details you give them. Plus you should probably insure your stuff because frankly even if your removalist is perfect this kind of stuff happens!
  • Ask all the questions! Ask everyone, it’s always better to ask and your removalist, insurer or whoever else whose job is doing this on a daily basis then try and go it alone!

Packing and Moving:

Everyone’s favourite part of moving, whether you’re moving across the road or interstate… Not!

  • So you have an idea of what boxes you think you need? Double it! Honestly before we did it we laughed too but you never realise how much you have until you try to move it. if you’ve been in one place for some time there’s no knowing what you will discover…
  • Give yourself plenty of time, you’ll need it! That moving date sneaks up on you faster than you realize.
  • Before you put it in a box ask if you really need it, like really really need it. If you can buy it there for a reasonable amount of money there’s a good argument that moving it isn’t worth it!
  • Same goes for furniture! If it’s something that was once in a flat pack and you’ll need to break down to pack into a box or put on a truck, or even if you don’t, consider buying it in your new location. Things never go together quite as well the second time and you’re paying to move it when you could get a new version of the same thing and sell the old. A ‘never quite right again’ flat pack bed is not worth the trouble of moving and re-assembling despite the best of intentions. We love Ikea with all our hearts but we know now first hand that their furniture doesn’t travel well.
  • Pack smart, use lots of bubble wrap, have good boxes and make best friends with packing tape! 
  • Label everything. Be specific, write it large and clearly on the top of the box. If you pack something in something else, include it. If there’s a mix of things include everything! It’s like Christmas Day when your stuff arrived and It’s not fun fishing through 20 boxes late at night to find your doona you wrapped some kitchen things in and didn’t label. If you’re not explicit you will be doing a lot more frustrated digging through boxes then you need to!
  • Invest in a good tape dispenser and box cutter, they save serious time and there’s a reason the professionals use them. Make sure to use fragile tape where appropriate!

Moving Day and Beyond

  • There’s very little chance your things will arrive by the time they are supposed to, have a back up plan for if this happens and expect a week or more even to be added to the estimations you were given. Things invariably happen that is outside both your and your movers control, and their estimates are optimistically designed to get your business.
  • Supervise the move but don’t help – you’ve paid burly men to get your couches up and down stairs so you don’t have to! That being said do keep an eye on what their doing to avoid damage, there’s nothing worse then losing your security deposit over careless movers.
  • Things will be broken. It’s an unfortunate reality that moving, especially interstate, means that your things will be bumped, jostled and crushed. Hopefully it won’t be the big things that are damaged but even if they are that’s what insurance is for. You did get insurance right? That’s kinda important… 
  • Take your time to unpack. There’s an initial wave of enthusiasm followed by an apathy that there’s still cardboard boxes and unassembled furniture, just go with it. If you need it you’ll get it!
  • Sell your old boxes! Just cut along the tape line and flatten them. They’re easy to sell on Gumtree, or back to movers and it’s a great feeling to get them out of the house.

Ultimately though, all I can say is just do it! Moving is a big deal, and it’s stressful and expensive but it’s worth it for the adventure. It is an adventure to say very the least.

Have you moved recently? Do you have any tips you’d like to share?

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