So, you’re moving house and you’re feeling pleased with yourself – because you’ve exchanged contracts, transferred your TV license and lined up a packing serviceBut are you about to be caught out, just when you think everything is in the bag?

It’s 4.30pm on moving day and you sit down, finally, amid mounds of boxes, at your new place. Let’s crack open some champagne to celebrate another rung scaled on life’s great ladder, you think to yourself. Except you’ve obviously not got any champagne, just a load of empty rooms and boxes. Come to think about it, you don’t even have a kettle to make a cup of tea. Or a cup. Or any tea. And yet all those things are in the house. Somewhere, in one of your 79 boxes – but you just don’t know which … This is, I think we’ll all agree, the worst kind of torture. And all because you didn’t pack a survival kit.

Moving-House Survival Kit: Best Practice

Your moving-house survival kit needn’t be anything fancy, just a small box that fill fit your most essential essentials in it while you’re still unpacking at your new place.

First things first: Make sure the survival kit is clearly labelled and everyone knows what this box is for. You may well be able to use a smaller box than your standard packing box. If not, ensure that you mark it clearly on the outside, otherwise you’ll be back to square 1!

Then, to avoid your precious survival box getting misplaced, keep it close at hand during your move. Ideally it should travel with you in person, in your vehicle. Or – at the very least – place it last on the removal van so it’s first to be offloaded at your new place. 

The key to getting your survival pack right is to focus on what you think will actually be useful. Try to imagine all the things you might need in your typical day at home – toiletries, kitchenware, snacks – and add them to the list. Think of it in these terms, and you’ll probably agree it’s OK for your ceremonial sword to go in with your main packing.

#28 Must-Include Items for Survival Kit

Hungry or thirsty?

1. Plastic plates and cups

2. Cutlery

3. Long life milk

4. Biscuits

5. Tea / coffee

6. Sugar

7. Snacks

8. Kettle

9. Wine or Champagne 

I’m not suggesting you have a drinking problem or anything. This is to celebrate when you’ve moved in – just like in the example at the beginning of this article. Trust me, you’ll be glad you did. Maybe buy some of those plastic flute glasses from your nearest supermarket to cut down on breakable glassware in your survival kit, mind you!

Keeping Clean

10. Wash-bag

Body soap, shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, toothbrush

11. Hand soap

12. Hand wipes

13. Towels

Bed Time

14. PJs

Pyjamas, in case you don’t call them that!

15.  Bedding

16. Pillows

Fixing or Tidying up

17. Mini tool kit 

Screwdrivers to assemble anything and a sharp knife to open the boxes

18. Lightbulbs

19. Bleach

20. All-purpose cleaner

21. Cleaning wipes

22. Tea towels

23. Bin bags / recycling sacks

Other Essentials

24. Keys

25. Flashlight / Torch

26. Change of clothes for all family members

27. Notepad and pen

28. Extra pair of scissors

So that more than one person can open boxes

29. Paracetamol / ibuprofen / aspirin and plasters 

Though do make sure no one has any allergies to the medication

This is an extensive, but not exhaustive list, to help ensure you’re super-prepared. Obviously, the exact contents of your survival kit will depend on your personal needs and lifestyle. If you wear contact lenses, then you’ll want your contact lens solution in your survival kit; if you’re asthmatic, then you’ll want your inhaler. If you wear makeup, pack your makeup remover!

Another way to approach it is to pretend you’re going on a caravaning holiday. Or even to a campsite (though you will have running water and electricity, mind you). Remember to think about the essentials – food and drink, warmth, light and shelter – and you won’t go far wrong.

So there we have it – everything you need to know to avoid becoming a squatter in your new house. And, if your curiosity has been tickled, here are more buzzmove tips and tricks on packing for moving day.

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