Downsizing made simple with TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®

Written by Jessy Herman

Whether you are simplifying your living arrangements or moving to a condo, downsizing is never easy. The thought of going through your many belongings can be overwhelming, but there are things you can do to simplify your move to a smaller home.

As soon as you know you’re moving, begin cleaning out areas of your home which tend to have the most clutter. This includes the attic, basement, and garage. And while the thought of throwing items away can be hard to cope with, there are alternatives. For high-end possessions you won’t be taking with you, pass them down to a family member or try selling them at an antique shop or auction. This will help ensure they go to a good home and will remain well cared for. For all other items, have a garage sale, donate what you can, or simply put them in storage.

For more helpful tips, watch the video below!

Like us on Facebook for more helpful tips and updates. TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward!

The pros and cons of living with friends

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK living with friends

Written by Katie Peterson

Living with friends is common among college students because of the convenience and fun factor of being around people you know you like. While there are many perks to living with friends this experience may cause more obstacles while living together than with a roommate you might not know as well. We’ve put together a list of the pros and cons of living with friends, as well as possible solutions to the obstacles that may come your way.

Pro: There is no need to “make plans” with the people you love to hang out with, they are already with you! It is much easier to coordinate plans, and you will always have someone right there to go on adventures with. Boring things you would normally do by yourself will become a fun and entertaining outing. Need to go grocery shopping? You’ve got a shopping companion! This is one of the most fun aspects of living with friends and you will make so many memories doing all the mundane things with your roomie.

Con: As much as you love your friends, living with them will uncover things you didn’t know before. No matter how well you think you know someone beforehand, living together will unearth habits, routines, and pet peeves you didn’t know before, which can lead to potential conflicts.

Solution: Be intentional about spending time with the friends you don’t live with and see every day. Taking time away from your living situation is important because it creates space in the roommate relationship, which is something even best friends need.

 

Pro: Close proximity will help strengthen your friendship. Seeing your friends every day means they know all about you and the happenings of your daily life. They become your family.

Con: If a problem occurs, you don’t have separate places to go in order to get space. Inevitably, fights can and will happen.

Solution: Be open and honest about your feelings and emotions. If you need some breathing room, speak up! Communication is the key to any successful relationship, and if yours is a friend/roomie relationship, it is even more important.

 

Pro:  You have already established a relationship before moving in. Obviously you like the person and enjoy hanging around them, so you can avoid the first awkward encounters you would normally have when moving in with a stranger. When you come out of your room in pajamas and crazy hair, there will be almost no judgement (almost).

Con: Because you are living with your friends and you have pre-established relationships, difficult and necessary conversations about rent, money, and rules may be hard to address. In worst-case scenarios, a friend might take advantage of the relationship in a tough situation because of your background (late on rent, leaves the place messy all the time).

Solution: It is important not to be too relaxed with responsibilities because of the personal relationship. Be assertive and honest with one another just like you would if you were living with a stranger. Even though you are friends, keeping the house clean and getting the rent in is important and should be treated professionally, not personally.

 

Pro: You have another person to share clothes, furniture, and chores with making life a little less expensive and a lot more enjoyable.

Con: Sharing is not something that should be assumed because of your relationship as friends, and not communicating your preferences can lead to tension.

Solution: It may seem like overkill, but creating a roommate agreement might be a good idea before moving in. This agreement could include which items are shared, a cleaning schedule, and which day of the month rent is due. The expectations are clearly laid out so no one is in the dark and you and your friends can be held accountable to what has been agreed upon.

 

The most important thing to remember when deciding if living with friends is something you want to tackle is that although you will have plenty of fun, you must be professional and responsible. Communicate and lay out the expectations early in order to prevent conflict, and spend some time away from your roommate if you need space. In the end, the hope is that living with your friends will be an experience leading to a stronger friendship and a fun living situation. Good luck!

Like us on Facebook for more helpful tips and updates. TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward!

What to expect from professional movers

It’s no secret, moving can be a difficult task! Between packing up your belongings and preparing the kids for a new school, you may find yourself overwhelmed with the options before you when it comes to hiring professional movers to help.

At TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®, we have more than 30 years of experience in the moving industry and make it our top priority for our trained, uniformed, and caring teams to exceed your expectations. We treat your items like our own and strive to make your moving experience stress-free and enjoyable.

We asked our move heroes what customers can expect when they move with the Movers Who Care®, here’s what they had to say.

Like us on Facebook for more helpful tips and updates. TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward!

11 dorm room essentials you can’t live without

Dorm Room Essentials picture

Written by Katie Peterson

As you begin packing to move into your college dorm room, it’s easy to be overwhelmed with the prospect of fitting all the stuff you’ll need for a whole semester in the back of a car. There are so many things you want to take with you; you have a pile of items already forming, and have been making Pinterest crafts for months! Although we’re sure you’ve read every dorm-packing list the Internet has to offer, there are a few essential items you may have overlooked that will help to ensure you are prepared for the semester ahead.

Ways to keep cool

As many college dorms do not have air conditioning, fans are good investments to help keep you cool and comfortable. You can place a box fan in your window or purchase an osculating fan to keep the air moving on hot days.

Power strips

With all the computer cords, phone chargers, and desk lamps you’re sure to have in your room, power strips and a couple of small extension cords are essential to staying charged up.

USB memory stick

The last thing you want to happen is for your laptop to crash on the night before a big paper is due and lose all of your work. Buying a memory stick and backing up your documents as you write is a good habit that will save your sanity.

To-go coffee mug

Coffee lover or not, you’ll definitely want to pack a travel mug for dorm-life. In college, travel mugs become essential for when morning classes start before ten and for when late night study sessions turn into really late night study sessions. They also work well if you have a meal plan, in which case most colleges will let you fill up on beverages before you leave the dining hall.

Laundry materials

A good choice while living in a dorm is laundry detergent Pods that come in individual packages. If you have stairs to climb to wash your laundry, these are more convenient to transport and they prevent the messy dripping that can happen when using bottles. Another good idea is a collapsible drying rack for the clothes you can’t dry. You can stow it away when it’s not in use and your clothes won’t be draped all over your furniture while they dry.

An umbrella

A good umbrella is a must, especially if you are going to school in an area that receives a lot of rain! Remember, unless your campus is one building, you will be walking outside for most of the day to get to your classes. Don’t get caught uncovered!

Dishes and utensils

Make sure to either purchase some cheap plastic dishes or disposable ones to use in your room. Sometimes getting out of your dorm room to go to the dining hall is just too much of an effort, (or you ran out of meals for the week). For times like these you’ll want dishes and utensils to eat your meals without ever having to leave your room.

Small tool box with the important stuff

Packing a small tool kit with a screwdriver, hammer, and tape measure will come in handy more than you would think. It also might make you popular amongst the less prepared members of your floor.

Command™ products

Command™ strips and hooks are absolutely essential for dorm life. Anything you might want to decorate; walls, ceilings, or doors can be dangerous for your wallet without the proper adhesive. Command™ products will prevent damage to your room when it’s time to remove your decorations at the end of the year. You’ll be glad you invested in the fall when you don’t have to cough up money for damages in the spring.

Shower organization

Find out what kind of bathroom you are going to have in your dorm. If you will be using a community bathroom, you will want a shower caddy to bring all of your toiletries to and from the bathroom. If you share a bathroom with a roommate or suitemates, you might want to purchase a “shower tower” to help organize everyone’s items and keep the bottles off the floor.

Your brain!

When packing to move into your college dorm the MOST essential thing to bring is your brain! Do your research beforehand and learn what you can about school rules, storage options, and what your roommate plans on bringing. This will help you become prepared and ready with everything you need for a full semester of fun.

There’s no guarantee you’ll be able to remember everything you will need while packing for college, but with this list of dorm room essentials, you’ll remember a few of the most important ones. Besides, if you do end up forgetting anything you can’t live without, you have an excuse to visit home for a weekend or get your first care package.

What advice do you have for dorm moving? We’d like to hear! Like us on Facebook for more helpful tips and updates. TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward!

Ready to move? Here is how to find the best insurance rates for your new home

Finding the best insurance rates

Whether you’re buying or renting a house at your new location, insurance is one of the most expensive costs you’ll have to deal with upfront. However, if you know the “ins and outs” of shopping for coverage, you’ll be able to get a great plan at an even better price. So, don’t think you have to just settle for mediocre coverage or pay a high premium when you purchase or rent a new home. Instead, follow these simple tips to find the best insurance coverage at an affordable price.

1. Bundle your coverage

Like any other company, insurance agencies want your business, and they are willing to give you a little incentive to get it. Most agencies do this by rewarding you with a better rate when you bundle multiple policies with them. In many cases, pairing your home or renters insurance and auto insurance with the same company can actually save you as much as 30 percent. In addition to those policies, many companies are even beginning to offer life insurance policies that can be bundled with your coverage to help you save even more. Bundling your policies isn’t only beneficial from a financial standpoint, though. Bundled policies typically simplify the claims and communication process, as it is the same for all of your policies.

2. Raise your deductible

Boosting your deductible is another way to save on your insurance premium. The deductible is the amount of the damage that you have to pay out-of-pocket before insurance kicks in in the event of a claim. Many policies with higher premiums are based on a $500 or $1,000 deductible. However, homeowners or renters who can afford to pay a little more out-of-pocket when filing a claim or who are willing to gamble that they won’t run into any issues may choose a deductible as high as $10,000 to save as much as 35 percent.

3. Update security

Most homeowners are aware that installing fire alarms and carbon monoxide sensors can lower their monthly insurance costs, but they may not realize that installing an advanced alarm system or otherwise improving the security of their home has an even bigger benefit. Alarm systems that are connected to a central monitoring system can often cut your premium by up to 10 percent, which is worth looking into as a new homeowner. And some systems may even cut your costs by as much as 20 percent, depending on what is included. While installing an alarm system may not really be an option if you are renting, you can still often get discounts on your policy for upgrading the locks on the door, improving the fire monitoring system, and taking additional measures to update the security of your rental property.

4. Shop around

Another great way to save on your new insurance premium is taking the time to shop around. Many new homeowners and renters are tempted to go with the first coverage they find in a hurry, but it really is to your advantage to get rates from at least three different companies to compare policies and rates. Make sure you’re getting a comparable quote from each company and compare the dollars and cents of each option.

5. Maintain a good credit rating

As you were looking for and finalizing your new home purchase or lease, you wanted your credit rating as high as possible. But, you might not have known that could also be beneficial for your insurance premium. Be sure to maintain good credit by paying your bills on time and avoiding a large balance on any of your credit cards to achieve a lower insurance premium.

Insurance is an important consideration when it comes to buying or renting a new home. From one location to the next, your premium could change significantly, so it’s important to take some time before you move to find the best insurance coverage and rate you can. Use these simple tips to secure the best coverage and have peace of mind as you move.

Michael Rogers, US Insurance AgentsAuthor
Michael Rogers is the Operations Director of USInsuranceAgents.com. With over 5 years of experience and knowledge in the insurance industry, Michael contributes his level of expertise as a leader and an agent to educate and secure coverage for thousands of clients.

Surviving your move: What to know about moving into your first apartment

Apartment moving pic

Written by Katie Peterson

At TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® we know moving can have its fair share of challenges. There’s the packing, the cleaning, and let’s not even mention move day itself. Moving into your first place is stressful, and apartment moving has its own set of headaches. Neighbors are more like roommates, there are a ton of rules and regulations while renting an apartment, and what about all those stairs? We’ve come up with some tips to help you survive your first apartment move.

Ask questions

-Ask the landlord about any concerns beforehand. Good questions to ask might include what kind of maintenance is available if something goes wrong in the apartment, how old the building is, and even questions about the previous tenants. Your landlord will love bragging about any new construction, and you will be making a more informed decision about your new place as a result.

-If you have a chance, talk to some of the current residents of the building while you are there. What do they think of the landlord? How are the other tenants in the apartment? This will help you make an informed decision about the apartment and give you a chance to introduce yourself to some of your future neighbors if you are already serious about renting.

Be prepared and organized

The actual move into your new apartment is all about being prepared and organized throughout the process. With these tips in mind, you’ll be ready for anything that comes your way.

Before your move:

-Make sure to bring paper documentation to your lease signing. This might include proof of employment or a copy of your lease with highlighted areas you might have questions on. Especially in competitive markets where multiple tenants are looking to rent, it pays to be prepared! This will also give your landlord a good idea of your trustworthiness and ability to bring important documents in on time (like your rent).

-Schedule a walk-through of the apartment with your landlord before you move in. This is a good opportunity to take photos of the condition of the apartment for reference when you are negotiating your security deposit. The photos can also be used to ensure you took care of the apartment when you eventually move out and want your deposit back.

-Measure the dimensions of your new apartment before you buy furniture or bring in items you already own. This will save you the headache of having to return any items that won’t fit, and the backache of your movers trying to fit the furniture through the door. Important spots to measure include the area for a washer and dryer and the nook for your refrigerator (if you have to supply them), tight doorways, and wall space for seating.

On move day:

-First things first, clean every nook and cranny of your new apartment! Scrub all those places you won’t ever be able to get to once your furniture is moved in, and even the places you will. It will save time and energy later in the day when all you have to do is a quick trip around the apartment with the vacuum.

-Schedule a timeframe to move into your new place at a reasonable and respectable time. The earlier, the better! Make sure you have enough time to finish moving in before residents in your apartment building are thinking about going to sleep. Your neighbors will appreciate meeting you during daylight hours as opposed to when they are complaining about the noise in their pajamas.

-Schedule any big items you’ve purchased to be delivered on separate days or spaced apart on the day of your move. Items such as mattresses and large furniture pieces will have their own deliveries and can create inconveniences on move-in day if arriving all at once. The day after your move, or a few hours after the movers have gone, are good times to schedule these deliveries to ensure the elevators and parking lots aren’t crowded and remain accessible to other tenants.

Be friendly and considerate

-This probably goes without saying, but be friendly! Introduce yourself to your surrounding neighbors. Even if you don’t go around knocking on your neighbors’ doors be sure to say “hi” in passing or on the elevator. You might make new friends, or at the very least, get to know their names in case their mail ends up in your box by accident.

-Make sure your landlord knows who you are and has a face to go with your name. It will be useful for him/her to know you in case you have a maintenance problem or you are a few days late on the rent. A little effort will ensure your landlord knows you as more than just a name on a check.

-Be considerate of the noise level and your activities at certain hours. Bouncing a basketball in your room on the third floor is never a good idea, especially if it’s at three o’clock in the morning.

Moving into your own apartment for the first time can be exciting, scary, and stressful all wrapped up in one. Making preparations beforehand, staying organized, and being considerate of your neighbors are great ways to help you survive your first apartment move!

What advice do you have for moving into your first apartment? We’d like to hear! Like us on Facebook for more helpful tips and updates. TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward!

Making moves in the COPA América Centenario

Written by Mark List

I’ve worked for TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® the last three years, the first two as an intern,

Mark List, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK International
Mark List, DOT and Fleet Safety Specialist

and this past year full-time after graduating from Grand Valley State University where I was collegiate runner in cross country and track. Sports had always been a staple in my life, and for many years I had participated in soccer. So when I was approached about helping coordinate efforts for COPA America Centenario, as TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® was contracted to provide trucks to transport the competing teams’ equipment to and from the airport during their stay throughout 10 different cities across the U.S., I jumped at the opportunity!

For the first time in its 100 year history, the COPA America Centenario was hosted in the U.S. Throughout the 10 cities, 16 men’s soccer teams played 32 matches during the month of June. Nearly 1.5 million fans came together over the duration of the tournament, averaging more than 46,000 in attendance at each game.

Camping World Stadium, Orlando, FL
TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® pictured at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, FL during the COPA America Centenario!

As part of my TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® coordination duties for the tournament, I “lived” in a hotel and worked in Chicago at the COPA America Centenario headquarters on Michigan Avenue for two weeks. With my “day job” as a DOT and Fleet Safety Specialist at the TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® corporate office, I had gotten used to traveling and life in hotels, but being 15 stories up on the north side of Chicago overlooking Lake Michigan was a pretty great start to this experience.

One of the first things I had to do upon my arrival in Chicago was meet with Delta Airline’s corporate team, and the head of security for both of Chicago’s airports, Midway International and O’Hare International. This meeting was to discuss standard safety procedures for entering and exiting the tarmacs, not only in Chicago, but across the country. This meeting was the first time I really saw the enormous effort it would take from our teams in each city. The expectations were already high, but at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® our mission statement holds us to a higher standard!

It was at this point I actually stepped foot on the tarmac with Lauren Munson, marketing coordinator for our Chicago franchises. We were walked through how to get onto the tarmac, expectations of our drivers, and exiting the tarmac. Little did I know, in a few days I would be out greeting Team USA and assisting our move team onto the tarmac to load all of their equipment!

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK Chicago moving for COPA América Centenario
TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® Chicago crew members Jeff and Ethan working to move team equipment during the COPA América Centenario soccer tournament!

Overall, COPA went very smoothly for TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® due to the hard work of our franchisees, managers, movers, and drivers. Without their dedication and positive attitudes, this event wouldn’t have been as successful as it was.

I’m very thankful I had the opportunity to work with these franchises and develop several friendships within our system, as well as outside. It was an amazing experience on all fronts, and let’s be honest, how many jobs allow you to watch elite level soccer matches as a true facet of your position? I want to say thank you again to all the franchises for supporting me and making it an easy few weeks of coordination with TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® and the COPA tournament, the Transportation Team including Rich, Lisa, Gina, Mark, Jen, Maria, and Lou for a memorable experience in Chicago, and lastly, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®/International, Inc., for setting me up for success and putting me in a position to learn and grow from various experiences I’ve had during my time with the company!

Mark List - COPA Transportation Team
Mark List with the Transportation Team in Chicago!

For more photos during our time moving teams throughout the tournament, view our Facebook album!

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. For more information or to learn about opportunities in becoming a franchisee at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® visit franchise.twomenandatruck.com to begin moving your career forward!

Don’t get burned: Your guide to moving during the summer

Tips for summer moving

While summer moves may be easier, with the longer days and the kids out of school, the heat can also bring its own set of problems. And if you’re planning to pick up soon and put down roots elsewhere this June, July, or August, it’d be a smart move to plan ahead so you don’t get burned. With our quick tips guide, you’ll be more than ready to keep your cool throughout your move.

Beware the busy season

According to the 2011 U.S. Census, more than one-third of all moves happen during the summer months. With these months being the most popular for moving, many companies such as TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® are booked solid for weeks in advance. If you can, start looking for moving companies at least 6-8 weeks before the date you’d like to move, and book one not long after you’ve found your favorite company. It’ll make your movers happier and your own stress subside.

Things that melt

No matter how large your moving truck may be, some things just aren’t meant to be stowed back there in the summertime. And that’s because, as you drive them on over to your new home, they’ll either melt or get damaged by the heat that’s trapped inside your big metal box on wheels.

When you’re packing, be sure to leave some cool space inside the car for things like candles (which will melt); CDs, videos, and cassette tapes (which will warp); and any items pressurized inside of cans, such as sodas and hairspray (which could burst). Also, furniture upholstered in leather will “sweat” if wrapped in plastic, so be sure the company you’ve hired to move you uses furniture pads under their stretch wrap to keep furniture protected.

Stay hydrated

When you’re in the thick of moving, it’s easy to shrug off the small things – like drinking enough water. In the heart of summer, that’s a dangerous choice. Instead, you have to be smart about keeping the heat of your movers in mind.

If possible, either schedule your move early in the morning to get a jump on the day, or late in the evening to avoid the heat of the high-noon sun. Beyond that, have cold water and sports drinks readily available for both your family and the moving crew. Respect their needs to take breaks from being beneath the blaze of the summer sun. And, if it’s financially feasible for you, buy lunch for the whole crew as well. Since it’s the busy season, your moving guys have probably been working 14 days straight (or more) throughout the summer, and a little kindness and consideration can go a long way here.

Also, be sure to keep an extra eye on the kids and pets, as they aren’t as good as keeping their cools as you are.

The cost of being cool

Moving always comes with a number of financial costs – whether that’s having to pay a moving company, asking for days off of work, or connecting home utilities and services in your new place. But the cost most folks forget, especially in the summer, is the cost of cooling when moving.

Even if you remember to turn the A/C off completely when you leave your old place, and turn it to a moderate, chilled temperature at your new one, the bill’s always higher than you’d expect. Here’s why:

  • Your new home likely didn’t have the air conditioning turned on before you moved in, so it’ll need to do a lot of cooling just to get caught up.
  • The doors to your home will be open for extended periods of time as people walk in and out moving your belongings, making it harder for your home to retain the cooler air.
  • You’ll have a number of sweaty people moving hot boxes and warm furniture into your new place, transferring all that heat inside along with it.

If you’re moving in the summer and would rather not be swimming in sweat the entire time, then you’ll want your A/C up and running. Just be sure to keep in mind that you’ll be paying for this cooling cost so you may prepare your wallet accordingly.

Even before you bring that first box outside, remember to apply sunscreen, wear light and loose-fitting clothing, and drink plenty of water. Moving is more marathon than sprint, and you’ll want to make sure you make it to the end to enjoy the cool fruits of all your summer labors inside your new home.

 

Rob Caiello - AllconnectAuthor: Rob Caiello is a Vice President of Marketing over at Allconnect. Since 1998, Allconnect has simplified and expedited the purchase and setup of home utilities and services (like Internet, TV, and Electricity) for millions of movers relocating all across the United States.

Moving with kids: avoid the moving day blues

TMAT306

Written by Katie Peterson

In movies, it always seems like moving is just about the worst news a kid can hear. Boxes are packed, the sad music plays, and it starts raining just as the car pulls out of the driveway, right past the “sold” sign in the front yard. But moving with kids does not have to be a dramatic movie plot-twist. Here’s how to help your kids avoid the moving blues and maybe even have a little fun along the way!

Before the move

Move meeting

Conduct a family “move meeting” to talk about the process and ease their nerves about the move. The more your children feel involved in the decision making, the less they will feel like they are being forced to do something they don’t want to do. Create a moving day plan so they may check off the events as they happen. For example, 1. Movers arrive, 2. Truck is all loaded up, 3. Drive to new house … and so on.

Start planning their new room

Help your child plan their new room setup and design. Take your child to the new place and have them talk about where they want to put their furniture or what color they want to paint their walls. This will help build up their excitement and give them fun decisions to make.

New owner letter

Sit down with the whole family and write a letter to the new owners of your home. This can be a fun and memorable experience for everyone. Tell the family moving in why the house is special and what they need to know going in, such as the first bedroom being the best room for making forts or the neighbor’s cat Frisky often wanders toward the apple blossom tree in the back yard. The family will have fun remembering stories while you write and the new owners will love the personal instruction guide.

During the move

Put them to work!

Assign age-appropriate tasks for the kids. Utilize those extra helping hands! Older kids might be able to help label or tape boxes while younger kids help wipe down tables or clean windows. Make a game out of these mini tasks by awarding winners for the fastest packer or the most rooms vacuumed.

“Day of move” box

Pack a “Day of Move” box for each child to keep their favorite small items with them. Packing all of your belongings into boxes and putting them in the back of a moving truck can feel overwhelming, especially when you don’t quite understand where your stuff will end up. Your child might even like Truckie’s moving journal to write down some of their thoughts about the move to keep with them. If your kids have some of their favorite things, they will feel more comfortable with the rest of their belongings being packed .

After the move

Go exploring

Explore your new neighborhood! Once your tennis shoes are finally unpacked, take a stroll around the neighborhood with the kids. This will be a great opportunity to get familiar with the area and maybe meet some of your neighbors.

It’s all about attitude

Stay positive and keep your excitement up. Make sure your kids know how happy you are to be in the new house. Your kids will feed off of your energy and how you are reacting to the move, so if you are positive and excited about it, chances are they will be, too!

Moving with kids can be tough, but with the right preparation and a positive mindset, you can make moving with your kids a memorable adventure.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward! For more helpful tips and information on moving services subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.

7 toy storage solutions that will save your sanity

Playing

Whether through a few too many well-meaning gifters or by your own hand, you may have reached a point where there are too many toys and something needs to be done. There are several benefits to downsizing and better storing your children’s toys, from encouraging creativity to simplifying your life. If this sounds good to you, here are some tried-and-true dos and don’ts to get you started.

DO:

Rotate toys

Consider packing away toys that aren’t played with as much. Every few weeks, make a point to rotate them back in and pack away another few toys. Make sure when you do this that you are involving your child in these decisions. According to Dr. Kim John Payne, “An avalanche of toys invites emotional disconnect and a sense of overwhelm.” Playful Learning actually has this down to a science, spinning off a ton of reasons you’re going to love it, including fewer sibling fights, easier cleanup, and deeper engagement with the toys that remain.

If you’re in need of storage for toys in rotation, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® provides a variety of boxes ranging in size to fit any toy you’ve got!

Get crafty

Making toy storage into a DIY project has the added benefit of giving you a chance to get crafty. If you enjoy that sort of thing, this can be a fun activity you can even get the kids involved in. Bianca over at Cute DIY Projects shares more than 30 of her favorite toys storage ideas for crafty moms, including arty wooden crates, a toy box on wheels, and toy sacks for quick picking up on-the-go.

Upcycle household items

Repurpose used items around the home instead of throwing them away. Not only will this help get your toy situation in order, it’s good for the environment and saves you money. Common items to consider include planters, coffee tins, baby wipe containers, paint cans, and mason jars. Slap on some paint or fancy paper and you’ve got custom-made home storage without spending a bundle.

Get smart about space

Ottomans with hollowed out insides for storage are your best friend. Not only can they enhance the decorative appeal of the home, you also are maximizing your space. Using hanging storage is another way to maximize limited space. Combine your crafty and upcycling skills to deliver a triple threat of hanging toy storage that’s cute, crafty, and green!

 

DON’T:

Buy containers without planning

Before heading out and stocking up on containers, take inventory of what needs to be contained. For example, is it a small-toy situation that could use a sack? Are there too many stuffed animals, something a stuffed animal hammock could solve? Making a list and customizing your storage solutions will not just save you money, it will save you the insanity of having a bunch of unused containers floating around adding to the clutter.

Take a one-size-fits-all approach

Different containers serve different purposes. It’s a common mistake to buy a bunch of storage containers that are all the same size and use them for everything. Instead, try to diversify. Some popular examples of toy storage types include steel trunks and storage baskets. Wall organizers, hanging baskets, under-the-bed storage, and caddies also are popular choices.

Forget your audience

While organization is great, don’t forget your audience! When plotting your toy storage solutions, ensure the toys you want your children to access can be safely and easily accessed. In addition to considering physical constraints, think of ways to make it fun so that your kids will want to play along. This could be in the form of a storage crate or sack custom to each kid, or a chalkboard toy box they’ll want to use again and again!

 

Content developed in association with The Parham Group and Noah’s Ark Self Storage.