Consumer Reports: How to ease stress of moving

Late spring into early summer is the busiest time of the year to move. That means millions of people will be packing, wrapping and schlepping. Whatever the circumstance, moving is never easy or fun.

But Consumer Reports has some good tips to help reduce the chaos. First, don't move what you don't want in your new home. Sell that unwanted stuff from your attic or basement at a garage sale, or online!

Plan ahead. Will your big sofa, entertainment center or other large furniture fit through the doorways of your new place? More measuring means less regret. And don’t move your food! A month before your move, stop buying frozen foods and eat what’s in your fridge and freezer.

As for packing? Empty suitcases, baskets and hampers should be filled with bulky or heavy items, like bedding or books. Assign each room unique colored stickers, put them on the sides of boxes and make a chart for your movers.

Take a picture of the back of your electronics so you can easily hook them up again. Loose wires and remotes should be tucked in a plastic bag and taped to the unit. The same goes for anything you take apart. Keep the bits and pieces with the thing they came from.

The first night after your big move should be cozy, not chaotic. So pack the items you’ll need right away in a separate bin, and move it yourself. This includes valuables, baby and pet items, toiletries, and cleaning supplies. Most importantly, have the bedding you’ll need for a good night’s sleep in your new home.

And Consumer Reports advises that about a week before you move, go to USPS online and fill out your change of address information. You can the program the date that you’d like your mail to forward, so you won’t miss any of your important bills or housewarming gifts.