Your Guide to Unpacking: How to settle in to your new home

Moving into your new home is exciting... until you realise all the unpacking you have to get done. Here's how to tackle the task without losing your mind.

Your Guide to Unpacking: How to settle in to your new home

Congratulations, you’ve moved house! You made it through the planning, organising, sorting, packing, lifting, and everything else you have to put up with when you move. We’ve already helped you out with packing tips, so how about a guide to unpacking? Let’s go!

1. Clean the space

If you haven’t already kicked things off with a clean, it’s a great thing to get out of the way before all your stuff is in its place. Start at one end of the house and go room by room, top to bottom. Ceiling fans, walls, windows, benches, skirting boards, floors… anything that needs a wipe down.

2. Get the furniture in place

Don't mess with the boxes just yet! Before you get to that part, make sure every piece of furniture is in its new spot. Taking the time to set the room exactly how you want it will make the actual unpacking so much easier.

3. Start with the essentials

Packing an essentials box saves a LOT of trouble, and gives you the perfect place to begin your unpacking. Room-by-room is a great rule when you’re moving, and when you’re unpacking you should start with the most-used items and areas. Do the bathrooms first, because chances are you’re gonna want to use those pretty soon. Then, the bedrooms… you don’t want to get to bedtime and realise you still have to put sheets on the bed.

4. Look after the whole family

If someone in the household is more anxious about the move, get them settled in first. Pitching in to ensure their room is set up and they’re comfy in their new home will make the whole process a lot easier on everyone.

5. Get the kids involved (or not)

Depending on their age and willingness to participate, there are some great ways to get the kids involved in the unpacking process. They’ll settle in quicker if they get to help set up their new space, and a lot of fun can be had from collapsing cardboard boxes. If you think the whole thing might be easier if they’re not super involved, set aside some activities to keep them busy while you get stuck into the hard work.

How to beat the unpacking procrastination

We get it, unpacking does not spark joy. Moving house is an incredibly hectic time, and it’s common to get started and lose momentum halfway through. Open heart surgery would look a lot like murder if you judged it halfway through. So here’s how to avoid those feelings!

1. Give yourself a deadline

Create that urgency to keep yourself on track. Pick a date that’s reasonable for you, mark it on the calendar, and stick to it! You could even plan to have friends over to see the new place and have everything in order by then.

2. Start small

You don’t have to have the entire house in order on day one! Break up the overwhelming items on the to-do list into smaller, more manageable tasks. You can write each one on a Post-It note and stick them to a wall, and pull each one off as you complete it. Feels good!

3. Remove distractions

It might be keeping the kids busy to let you work, it might mean playing music instead of turning on the TV, and it may be as simple as leaving your phone in the other room. Check out our favourite songs to help you unpack.

4. Tidy as you go

It’s easy to get carried away, and before you know it you’re left with a tornado of packing peanuts and cardboard spread across the entire house. Remember how we suggested going room-by-room? That goes for cleaning too. Unpack your bedroom, pop everything in its place, remove the rubbish, then onto the next room. You and your sanity will thank us later.

Be realistic, make a plan, and don’t beat yourself up if it takes a little longer than expected. Once you’re all done, it’s time to sit back and enjoy your new home! 

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