Once you've managed to sell your home, you breathe a sigh of relief - until you realise you've now got to go through the process of moving. This could turn out to be the most stressful aspect of buying and selling. Make it easier by following these tips for a stress-free move...

1. Declutter

This is the time to be ruthless. There's no sense in packing and taking things you don't want or use, especially if you're storing them for other people. Take clothes and books to the charity shop. Fill your new home only with things that you want; there will be fewer boxes to move and it may well cost you less.

2. Board out pets

Arrange to board your animals out until you've settled into the new place. It will stop them getting under your feet, and reduce the likelihood of them escaping and getting lost while doors are open. This will also make the process less stressful for your pets.

3. Label everything

Unpacking and locating your belongings will be a lot easier if you label all the boxes. Write what's in them and which room they belong in. Then each box can be taken directly to the right room, and you won't have to shift them about.

4. Choose a good removal firm

Removal firms can be expensive, but this is one area where you could regret economising. A good firm will alleviate a lot of the stress of moving and be worth the cost. Some offer a packing service, which will save you a lot of time. Look for a firm that belongs to a professional body and check that your belongings will be fully insured against theft or damage.

5. Measure up

If you haven't already done so, measure your furniture to check if your new home will accommodate it. It's a common problem for buyers of new builds to find that their sofa or table won't fit - not what you want to discover on moving day!

6. Have a checklist

There are tons of people you need to inform about your move, so write a checklist. Don't forget to include your new home in this. You don't want to close the door once the removal firm has departed, and discover that you've forgotten to have the power switched on (and it's last thing on a Friday!).

7. Keep important files together

Things go missing during a move. It's inevitable. However, you can reduce the chances of losing something important by keeping all important documents together in a file. This should include financial paperwork, passports, anything relating to the move etc.

8. Pack essentials together

Most of the boxes can be unpacked at your leisure. However, you should pack essentials together, so that once you arrive you will easily be able to find things you need. This could be phone chargers, cash & credit cards, medication - even things like toilet paper and coffee.

9. Make a schedule

This can be immensely helpful. Plan the tasks for each day/week in the run up to your move, such as when you need to contact utility companies or take time off work.

10. Don't leave it until the last minute!

Most moves don't happen overnight, so get organised and start preparing for the move early. Having to pack in a hurry or find a removal firm at short notice is never going to be stress-free.

While you can't make moving totally stress-free, there's a lot you can do to cut down on hassle. Organisation and planning is key, so as soon as you know you're going to be moving, begin making lists of what you need to do, and sorting out your belongings.

Author's Bio: 

Hi, I’m Lucy. I am a freelance writer, blogger and mum of two. My writing is regularly published on a wide array of publications, including my own blogs, Real Parent, Real Wedding, and Real Life. Come say hi on @lclarkecouk or on Pinterest