Adventures in Moving, Part 3

  • By Meadow Brook
  • 07 Jun, 2017

Two more days. . . 

I realize it’s been a while since my last post. In that time I’ve been packing, cleaning, and generally preparing myself, my son, and my cats for the big transition. Here are a few tips that I can pass on from the past few weeks.


Admittedly, I probably spend more time cleaning my home than most people. Maybe that’s because I have a 3-year-old that loves to get into everything. Or maybe it’s because I have two geriatric cats that shed like crazy. Or maybe it has to do with how my brain is wired—I really don’t know.  But what I do know is this: don’t wait to clean until right before move-out.  START EARLY.  Here’s what I mean:

There are several things that need to be deep cleaned before moving. The bad news--this cleaning will take lots of time and lots of labor. Cleaning the oven, moving appliances to clean the kitchen, and cleaning shower doors were the worst. But there is good news—these tasks don’t have to be done at the very end! These things can be done in the days leading up to the move. 

This last week I’ve been picking one hefty task to accomplish each day or evening.

  • This past Saturday night I emptied my cabinets in the kitchen and bathroom, packed the items, and cleaned the cabinets inside and out. (Before you ask—No, I do not, in fact, have a life. I am almost always home on Saturday nights. . . *sigh*)
  • Sunday night, I moved my fridge and stove to clean the floor and baseboards.
  • Monday night I cleaned my oven. (I sprayed the oven with cleaner before I went to work Monday morning—by Monday evening, the grime wiped right off.)
  • Tuesday night I cleaned out the inside of my fridge and freezer.
  • Tonight I plan on cleaning windows.

Of course, there are a few things that will need to be done at the very end (I’m thinking vacuuming, mopping, and wiping down the kitchen/bathroom), but these small cleaning tasks should take very little time if the big work is done ahead of time.

Now I hear a voice from the ether asking , “But why worry about this stuff? Won’t your landlord do it anyway?”

Well, I happen to know my landlord, and yes, there is a cleaning staff that will finish what residents don't.  But, there will be a cost.  Did you know that Landlords in the area may charge up to $50 per labor hour for cleaning?   Considering I’ve spent 8 or more hours by myself on these tasks, the calculator says I’ve just saved myself about $400 in cleaning costs. (Think that is high? Call a cleaning service and ask how much they charge.)

Last-minute To-Do List

The other thing I have realized during this process is that there are several tasks that kind of sneak up on a person right before moving. Here are a list of things that I think are important and deserve a little mention:

  1. Forward mail with the post office . I have encountered a lot of residents that insist that they don’t need to forward their mail. I don’t get anything but junk mail—all my bills are done online.   Well. . . just don’t forget to change the shipping address on Amazon (one-click purchasing is awesome, right?!). Oh, and the job you forgot that you had for a few months last year—that W-2 is being sent to your old place and is now in the hands of someone else.
  2. Switch utilities and internet . In my case, this wasn’t too hard. But I’ve heard stories from residents that have waited a bit too long and had to go without internet for several days because the installer was not available on the move-in day.  
  3. Set up carpet cleaning . After calling around and getting some estimates, I realized that the amount my landlord charges to clean my carpet if I don’t is actually a little less than what I would pay if I set it up with a service myself. So I am choosing to let my landlord clean the carpets and take it out of my deposit. (Whew!!) But you will want to talk to your landlord about the specific requirements for your lease to avoid extra charges from your deposit.
  4. Separate items that will be needed right away in the new place . Things like shampoo, toothbrushes, prescription medications, vitamins, cat food, and certain toys need to be readily accessible for me when I get moved into the new place. So I bought a plastic tote specifically to hold all of these items. It will be the first thing I move into the new place, and it will stay in a prominent place until I get unpacked.
  5. Pet transitions . Right now my cats think that I am evil; however, I’m hoping a little catnip and some extra food will keep them from killing me in my sleep. That being said, I’ve taken extra care to make plans for them during the moving process. If boarding is not an option (which it is not for me), then keeping them confined to a quiet room (in my case, the bathroom) with ample food, water, and litter while the movers work is ideal. As a life-long pet owner, I cannot stress enough how important it is to make sure your fur-buddies are planned-for during this process.  They are stressing as much as I am, but with a little planning and love, I think we will all make it through without any irreparable harm.

By Meadow Brook 07 Jun, 2017

I realize it’s been a while since my last post. In that time I’ve been packing, cleaning, and generally preparing myself, my son, and my cats for the big transition. Here are a few tips that I can pass on from the past few weeks.

By Meadow Brook 03 Mar, 2017

It’s a cold weekend in February. I am kid-free and have no plans this particular Sunday afternoon. In order to keep my moving prep on schedule, I decide that I’m going to go ahead and get my walls cleared off and prepped.

No big deal, right? Just need to get nails out and fill the holes. It’s 2pm--I’ll be done by dinner. . .

[Skip ahead 4 hours] . . .Not done yet. . .

By Meadow Brook 03 Feb, 2017

I’ve moved several times throughout my life; in college, I moved in and out of dorms every semester; after college, I lived in several different residences before settling down at my first apartment here at Meadowbrook; and now, after ten years in the same place, it’s time to move again. 

As I prepare to move this summer, I thought it would be a great opportunity to post a series of blogs to help others who will be moving this year. This first installment involves paring down one’s possessions . . . or getting rid of STUFF! 

By Meadow Brook 13 Dec, 2016

1.   Make arrangements to pay January rent.
January is the easiest month to forget to pay your rent. You can certainly pay your rent online, but if you want to avoid the transaction fees, you can pay your rent before you go or leave a post-dated check with the office. (We can hold post-dated checks as long as they are dated before January 5!)

2.   Keep the heat turned on.  
Your lease requires you to leave the heat set to 60 degrees during the winter months, even if you are away from your apartment.  

Why? -->The heat from the apartments in the building is enough to keep water pipes running smoothly.
          No heat = frozen water and broken pipes.  
          Broken pipes = lots of water running all over.  
       Who pays for this damage? -->Whomever turned their heat off.

By Meadow Brook 21 Nov, 2016

It’s the week of Thanksgiving. For most people, this is about the time when the cravings for turkey and pumpkin pie overwhelm any desire to be productive. For me, it simply means I have four days to get my apartment clean before family comes over. . .

By Meadow Brook 16 Nov, 2016
Many times in the last several years, the leasing team has sat in the office discussing topics that come up often in our line of work; these topics include educating new renters, methods of passing on relevant information to residents without being too aggressive, and even finding unobtrusive ways to connect the different types of people in our community.  Most of the time these conversations end the same way--with lots of ideas, but no immediate plan of action.  

We finally decided to start the "Meadow-blog".  

To some, jumping on the blog bandwagon at this point may seem a bit outdated--even "passe".  But hey, better late than never, right?  

In all seriousness, though, we aren't writing a blog just to write a blog.  Our goal here is to create a hub of information that will be useful to our residents, both current and prospective.  In the immediate future, we plan on passing on helpful cleaning tips (which may be very useful before moving out of a home), fun DIY decoration projects that won't damage your home (i.e. affect your security deposit), resources (both physical and online) that may be of use to people in our community, and lease reminders (including dates that are important to remember.)  

We have no set timeline for our blog posts, so we'll post as we have the time to create content.  And hey--if you have an idea for a post in the Meadow-blog, let one of us know.
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