How to Move in Less than a Week without Losing Your Mind

I told you guys in a prior post that I had moved to a new home, but what you may don’t know is that I had to pull off this move in five days. I’m talking about having to pack up an entire condo, clean it so it was like it was when I moved in, and get everything in the new place mostly unpacked so we can move on with life like nothing changed. Plus, while doing this move that took place from Tuesday thru Saturday, I still had to keep the kids busy and keep up with work.

The tips I am sharing with you today are the exact things that I did to move into a new place in less than a week without completely losing my mind.

Giveaways 4 Mom

Make a To Do List the Moment You Find Out You’re Moving

The realtor didn’t let me know until Tuesday afternoon that I had been approved for the house and my move-in date was the following Saturday morning. As soon as getting the approval I immediately took some time to make a to-do list.

Trying to handle everything in such a short amount of time will ultimately make things extremely difficult for you because not only are you trying to remember everything you’re trying to do it at the same time.

Some of the things I would suggest putting on your to-do list include:

  • Letting your current landlord know you’re moving
  • Booking a moving company or U-Haul
  • Calling the utility companies to get everything switched over
  • Purchasing boxes
  • Switching your mailing address
  • Paying up your utility bills early so any deposits will hopefully be covered based on the proration they will give you on the current month bill
  • Donating things that you haven’t used in forever so you’re not cluttering up your new house.

Trust me, taking the time to write out even the tiniest little things such as doing laundry will help you save your sanity and make sure that nothing gets forgotten doing an already crazy and stressful time.

Pack a Go Bag

The one thing that saved my butt during the extremely short move was making sure everyone had their “go bag”. Cleaning the old place took longer than I had planned for so once everything was unloaded at the new place I was tired and the only room I felt like unpacking the first day was the kitchen.

Always have a ‘Go’ bag to make sure that you’re fully covered. Include anything you need, such as five days of clothes and all your toiletries.

You can’t always predict what’s going to happen, especially if you’re working at the same time. This bag will give you the time you need to unpack without compromising on your daily needs.

Make Sure You’re Packing the Appropriate Number of Rooms Each Day


Empty Closet
My closest was the first place I had 100% packed.

Try to divide your packing over the course how many days you have to move. Don’t try to pack up the entire house with only a day to spare.

For example, Habitica is a great app that can be used to turn your packing into a game. You may want to divide your rooms by the number of days you have and put each individual task to the app.

It’ll divide everything up and ensure that you can keep a handle on your packing.

Don’t Depend on Getting Your Deposit Back

Your deposit shouldn’t be factored into your plans. If you need the deposit to pay the moving company, you’re already going to find yourself in a tough situation.

Landlords aren’t necessarily prompt in returning deposits. Furthermore, these deposits may not be returned at all if anything has been damaged. And those claims usually don’t become apparent until you ask for your deposit back, unless you have a good landlord.

It’s best to attempt to get your deposit back after you’ve moved as sometimes it could take a few weeks to see the money in your bank account.

In my case, I was expecting my deposit back and some since I had already paid some of my rent for May since the realtor hadn’t let me know I was approved yet for the new place. I had all the walls painted and holes sealed from mounting TVs to even having all of the carpets freshly cleaned and purchased new outlet covers and blinds. Basically, my prior landlord has nothing to do but replace the washer/dryer and dishwasher, which was one of my main reasons for moving outside of outgrowing the condo, for a new tenant to move in.

However, when returning the keys despite him being happy with the results of the place, I didn’t receive any money back (no deposit and no money paid for a month I wasn’t even living there) due to apparently being over the water usage and it just now coming up when I move out. I’ll save that rant for another day, though.

Anyways, this didn’t impact my move, but if I knew that he was going to keep the money paid in advance for the next month and the deposit I wouldn’t have spent all that money paying to clean carpets, painting, etc. Honestly, I would have just cleaned what I could have done myself without enlisting outside help. Lesson learned though and it has broken me out of the habit of paying rent weeks before it is due.

Plan to Have to Spend More Money at the New Place Once the Move is Over

One of the biggest mistakes people make is they believe that once the move is over they no longer must spend any money. This couldn’t be further from the truth, though.

There are always expenses involved with moving into a place. You might be upgrading to a bigger place and you find that there’s simply not enough furniture to fill that space.

There will also be expenses associated with making the place yours. Maybe the carpet is dirty from the previous owners? Maybe you don’t like the color of the walls and your landlord has given you permission to paint them a different color?

When I viewed the new place, everything seemed good. The realtor informed me some things would be fixed before moving in. Well, moving day came nothing had been done, the grass hadn’t even been cut, the fence isn’t fixed, among a slew of other things such as missing screens from most windows, missing/broken blinds, etc.

Therefore, that was more unexpected expenses and since in my lease, it states I’m responsible for basically everything all these things must come from me as well despite them supposed to have been being handled before my move-in date. It doesn’t help that this neighborhood is part of a homeowners association and moving from a homeowners association I knew things such as the lawn and blinds are a big ‘no no’ and would result in a fine if I didn’t handle them ASAP.

Final Thoughts – Moving in Less Than a Week While Keeping Your Sanity

It is very possible to pull off a move in less than a week without losing your mind if you follow these tips. However, after the move is done that’s when the nonsense starts. You probably can tell from this post that moving was the easier part for me and it’s the aftereffects that drove me a little crazy and I’ll do a post about why I’ll never be renting from a real estate agent again in a few (hopefully, I’ll be buying once my lease is up anyway) to fill you in on that.

Have you ever pulled off a move in a short amount of time? What helped you keep from losing your mind?



  1. […] I have found some ways to make moving less stressful for everyone. A while back I told you how I moved in less than a week without losing my mind and today I wanted to share with you some of the things that I did, and suggest that you do as […]

  2. I’m a super packer so packing in a week sounds like fun to me. But I know that’s weird for most people, haha!

  3. I had to do this once but I DID lose my mind. I worked several 16-hr days sorting and packing. Congratulations to you for handling it much better than I did!

  4. I wish I had these tips sooner, we moved 3 times in the last few years and I lost my sanity every single time!

  5. I think making a to-do list is a must so you won’t forget a single thing. It has been years since we moved, but I can still remember how chaotic it was.

  6. Never easy to do but with these tips i guess i have found a perfrct solution to this issue… Many thanks.

  7. Cindy Ingalls says:

    I’ve moved a lot over the years. I have done it quickly but it was more moving from a storage unit to an apartment in a few days. It involved picking up my stuff in one state and driving to another over a weekend. It was exhausting and took me forever to unpack. Having a to-do list really does help when you are in a time crunch.

  8. I am sharing now! My bestie is moving and is a total MESS!!!

  9. We’re getting ready to move, so I’ll have to keep this in mind. I’m getting panicky just thinking about the move!

  10. Great tips for moving in! We have been considering making a big move so this is timely and will be very helpful for us. Thank you!

  11. Goodness these tips are really great! I could not imagine trying to move again without some of this advice!

  12. These are great tips! I remember, two years ago, my husband had to move all of our belongings by himself because I had to stay at the hospital for major surgery. it wasn’t easy!

  13. Gemille Sleweon says:

    With my college graduation approaching, i know that i will have to do a lot of moving around. Thanks for sharing these helpful tips that will will more thank likely be using soon.

  14. These are great tips, especailly the one about needing more money after the move. That has always proven to be true for us.

  15. Cat says:

    We have had to move around quite a bit in my years in high school so we did a lot of these things, too. My husband and I made the mistake of not hiring movers this last move we made and OH man it was so grueling!

  16. Moving can become a little overwhelming. But these tips are sure to help remove the drudgery from moving. Packing one room at a time is really sensible advice. That is what we have done whenever we moved.

  17. Ruth I. says:

    These are great tips! I had no idea about the GO bag but it makes sense and is really important. Not all have the time to unpack in one day so it’s a fantastic idea to have one.

  18. brianne says:

    These are such great tips, I would even know where to begin if we moved! I need to keep this in mind if we ever decide to find a home one day!

  19. Every time I have moved it has been a stressful time. Buying a new home can be hard and the last two were quite the experience. Next time, we are hiring movers! lol

  20. Such a great guide. this would be a big help especially for those planning to move.

  21. Geraline Batarra says:

    Those are really great tips. I will definitely follow this steps once I am planning to move, thank you for sharing this with us.

  22. Joely Smith says:

    Ah yes the GO BAG is a must! Solid advice for sure. Great tips over all and yeah, never plan on seeing a deposit back.

  23. I can’t imagine moving in such a small period of time. We have accumulated so much stuff over the years, I feel like I would be totally overwhelmed. These are great tips if you were on a time budget.

  24. Gladys Parker says:

    I have and nothing helped me from losing my mind. It was a nightmare. I like your post as it explains the problems that can arise that no one seems to look for. In my state the landlord is suppose to keep the security deposit in the bank collecting interest until the tenant moves, although, they never do.

  25. These are great tips. I have had to move in less than a week before. I remember packing everything in plastic bags, the “need” wasn’t there to be out but I wanted to get it over with wihtin a week.

  26. Annemarie LeBlanc says:

    We have only moved twice and it took weeks before we got all our stuff packed and ready to move. However, we have finally found a place where we plan to stay for the rest of our lives. Your tips are really helpful so I will do my best and share this with friends and family.

  27. I was lucky not to lose my mind when we moved, and it took a LOT longer than a week. I wish I’d had this info back then!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.