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Planning, early action key for a smooth move

| Sunday, June 23, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

Susie Danick, co-owner of TAD Relocation, offers guidelines for a smooth move:

Don't go it alone: Ask for assistance from your friends, family or professionals.

Start early and start young: Spring cleaning is more than just cleaning; it can be prepping for an eventual move. So every year, purge a little, because it is never too early, and you are never too young to start sorting and downsizing. If you start early, you get to make the decisions instead of having someone make them for you.

Start behind closed doors: Sort and organize closets, filing cabinets, attics and basements. Choose one a month until you are done.

Box, then discard: Think about items that you use every day and would like to continue using every day in your new home. Write them down. Those things that don't make your list (things you just don't use, but can't yet bear to part with), box up. Six months to a year later, discard or give away the contents of that box if you haven't opened it up.

Giveaway gifting: Distribute things to family and friends, including family mementos, photos and books. Choose an item a month. Save only those keepsakes that mean the most to you. Don't ever throw away something that has special memories, is valuable or is a family heirloom.

Bottom-line the bottom line: The fewer items you need to pack and move, the smaller the moving bill.

— The Washington Post

Clean ahead: Have draperies, rugs and other linens cleaned before the move.

Develop a floor plan for your new residence: That way, you know where your furniture will go and what items you won't have room for. Then, start thinking about whom you would like to give those items, whether a family member, an auction house or a charity organization that will, undoubtedly, appreciate your furniture donations.

Ask, “Do I really need that?”: Dispose of nonfixable items, unwearable clothing and items that are doing no more than just taking up space. This includes medication. Throw out all expired medicines now, because you are never going to use them. When disposing of medications, make sure to follow the guidelines offered by the FDA (www.fda.gov).

Use up what you have or make donations: Eat up those cans of food you stocked up on prior to a storm; eat the frozen foods in your freezer. You are not going to want to have to pack those heavy items.

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