10 awesome unpacking tips


As most of you know, my family has recently moved across the country (from AZ to OH). Who knew it would be so much work?! Woo! We are finally down to the last couple boxes and it feels GREAT!

Here are some unpacking tips I have found helpful for your next big move. If you have organized your move with a moving check list and used my moving tips, your job of unpacking will be much easier. If every thing is labeled and in the correct room, you are already off to a great start. It may be a good idea to quickly run through each room though before you start unpacking to make sure each box is in the right room.

10 awesome unpacking tips on iheartnaptime.com

10 unpacking tips


1. Clean before you start unpacking. Make sure each room and closet has been cleaned and sanitized before putting your stuff away. It may look clean… but wait until you pull out the drawers. Eek! It will feel refreshing to know it is clean, I promise! You may even consider hiring a cleaning company to come in and clean before hand if it is really bad.

2. Open the “me-first” box and set up the beds first. Remember to take it one box at a time and make sure everything has a place.

3. If possible dedicate 1-3 days after moving in so you have time to unpack. It feels nice to get everything unpacked in the first couple of weeks.

4. Delegate helpers to unpack a room if you have help. Here’s the rooms I unpacked first and it seemed to work out well.

  • Bedrooms and closets
  • Main bathroom
  • Kitchen/pantry
  • Laundry room
  • Living room
  • Play room
  • Office
  • Garage/basement/other rooms

I almost put my kitchen first on the list, but you have to go to the bathroom and sleep. You just have to! ;) Having the kitchen unpacked, and in clean working order has always saved my sanity. It’s nice to have one clean and organized space when moving into a new home. Find what works for you. :)

5. Keep the kids entertained while you unpack. Give them some crayons and let them draw pictures on the boxes. It may be fun to buy them a new toy as well or let them just explore the new house.

6. Get your house in order before setting up the computers and TV. As tempting as it may be, open the boxes first and then it will be so nice to sit and relax.

7. Get the empty boxes out of the way. As you start unpacking the boxes will start piling up. Take a few loads to the recycling bin, or better yet, list them on Craiglist for someone else to use.

8. Reorganize as you go. As you get into a daily routine you will find yourself moving things around to wear they best fit.

9. Add your own style. Obviously decorating a home won’t happen over night, but it’s fun to start adding your own style to make it feel like home. A few easy ways to do this from the get go, is to add colorful curtains, rugs and pillows.

10. Turn of some music, invite your friends or family over and most importantly have fun! Moving is definitely an adventure! :D

So… what’s the first thing you unpack after a move?


This post was brought to you by PODS. If you missed the beginning of this series, you can check it out below:

Free printable moving check list 

Free printable moving check list

10 best moving tips 

10 best moving tips...pin now, save for later!

My move with PODS

best way to move across the country



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Disclosure: This post was in partnership with PODS. All opinions are 100% my own. We have loved our move with PODS! Thanks for supporting these sponsors that allow me to create new and special content for I Heart Nap Time.

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Jamielyn Nye

Creative director and founder of I Heart Naptime. Jamielyn aspires to reach women, get their creative juices flowing, and to genuinely inspire. When she’s not creating, Jamielyn loves to chase her three little monkeys and snuggle up on the couch with her man.

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  1. Jenny@Simcoe Street posted on June 27, 2013 at 2:44 pm (#

    I set up kids’ rooms first, beds, and bathroom essentials. Next was my kitchen. Moving is such a process. We are STILL unpacking boxes, but having our baby girl arrive 4 weeks after moving in probably has to do will our slow progress :)


  2. Andrea posted on June 27, 2013 at 2:20 pm (#

    couldn’t agree more about the first “me box.” i always like to set up kids rooms first and my kitchen. those always help make things easier!

  3. Emily @ My Love for Words posted on June 27, 2013 at 3:10 pm (#

    I think not plugging the tv in right away is a fantastic tip!

  4. Lindy posted on July 9, 2013 at 12:22 pm (#

    Great Ideas….I’ll have to remember that if I move again. If I can ask, what part of Ohio? I’m from PA. :)

    • Jamielyn posted on July 9, 2013 at 6:30 pm (#

      It definitely helps to have as many tips and tricks as you can! We live in Northern Ohio! :)

  5. Amy C posted on August 10, 2013 at 4:02 pm (#

    We move every 5 years or so very long distanced. The moving companies that are hired for us don’t seem to focus on ‘organized’ packing. I have learned to first seek out towels and sheets. Nothing feels as good as a shower after a day of cleaning/unpacking and a good night’s sleep in your own bed is a must!!

    • Jamielyn posted on August 16, 2013 at 2:34 pm (#

      I agree, clean towels and sheets are essentials when you first move in! Thanks for commenting Amy!

  6. Rap posted on December 25, 2014 at 6:21 pm (#

    If the move is local, try to do your kitchen a day or two before the big moving day. Eat out and use paper products for the last day. 

  7. Ryan Scott posted on September 23, 2015 at 10:26 am (#

    The first time I read your blog it’s about how to pack things properly if you’re moving, and now you’re giving us another helpful tips on how to unpack things properly. Great job and I really enjoyed reading your blog.

  8. Gloria C. posted on October 9, 2015 at 9:19 am (#

    Great post! Interesting and extremely helpful. Let me add a safety tip for moving when you have kids: Keep handbags, laptops, telephones, passports, jewelry and other small valuables together and move them in your own car. Also keep a box with power cables, extension cables, router for internet connection and a couple of table lights with you. The tool box should be around you as well. Kids are curious and love testing out things. They don’t know danger. ~
    Richmond Upon Thames Man And Van Ltd.

  9. Amanda posted on April 18, 2017 at 6:55 pm (#

    I unpack the toilet paper first! ;) And I set up the shower with a curtain, shampoo, and towel, set up the trash can with a liner, and unpack my scissors for cutting all that tape open on my boxes. Sticking a water pitcher in the fridge with some cups close by is a lifesaver. If you’ve got snacks put them by your cups or in the fridge too. Those are all to keep me and mine comfortable during the process. Moving is awful enough without being hangry or thirsty​ or too tired to hunt for sheets and pillows let alone a shower curtain so you can go to sleep feeling clean. :)