How to unpack after moving house like a pro

  • By John Miller
  • 17 Mar, 2016
businessman in suit looking at pile of boxes

You’ve made it to your new home, and now you have a labyrinth of boxes to greet you. Unpacking may seem like a daunting task when you have so much to do. However, you can make the process easier by having a plan before you start unloading.

Here are some tips to help you unpack like a pro.

Clean First

You might be tempted to jump right into unpacking boxes. And you may assume the landlord or previous tenants cleaned before they moved out. However, don’t count on them to clean thoroughly. Many times previous owners are concerned about loading boxes and don’t focus on the cleaning aspect.

Before you unload a single box, wipe down everything with soapy water. It’s not fun to begin your unpacking process with housework, but you’ll appreciate that you have a clean house later.

Open All Boxes

You may be tempted to push a few boxes in a closet where you can forget about unpacking them for a few weeks. However, a few weeks sometimes becomes months and then years.

Rather than waiting to unpack some boxes, unpack all boxes as you go. After you unpack a box, break it down, and put it in a pile. You can get rid of all the boxes on a site like Craigslist or by recycling.

Make Your Bed

By making your bed first, you create a warm place to rest your head after a long day of unpacking. Setting up your bed will also let you enjoy a feeling of normalcy in your new home.

If you don’t finish setting up beds for everyone in your family, get some mattresses together in your bedroom. Have a sleepover with the family in your room to add to the adventure of moving.

When you do unload the stuff in your kids’ rooms, allow them to help you with unpacking. When kids help you unpack, they get to arrange their belongings how they want.

Unpack the Kitchen

Once you unload your bed, unpack the food. This way you avoid food spoiling, and you encourage everyone to keep the kitchen clean instead of leaving clutter and snacks all around the room.

The kitchen is also likely to take the longest amount of time because of all the kitchenware. You will clear a lot of boxes just by starting with this room, which helps you feel even more productive. After you’ve unloaded all the boxes, the kitchen can become a relaxing spot where people can go to take a break.

Get the Bathroom Ready

Before too long, you’ll need to take a shower and use the restroom. Unload the bathroom essentials so you have a place to freshen up. Start by unloading the boxes for the bathroom that most people will use.

Make sure the plumbing works. You want to know right away if you need to turn on the main water valve. Next, hang the shower curtain, put towels out and fill the medicine cabinet.

Avoid Going to the Store Right Away

You may notice as you unpack that you need a few supplies here and there. However, you may end up going to the store five times in one day if you leave right away. Unless the item you need is essential, make a list of things you need.

Writing down everything you need first can save you from taking multiple trips to the store, spending too much money and creating unnecessary clutter.


By using these unpacking tips, you can save yourself from the overwhelming stress of unpacking. In fact, you may have some fun once you get started. Remember to take your time and be patient. Unpacking may take you a few weeks, but unloading right the first time will be worth it once you’re finished.

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