7 Helpful Tips for a Stress-Free Move-In Day

Move-in day is one of the most highly anticipated days among college students. But is it safe to say we really only look forward to the moment after we’re all unpacked and settled in? The actual “moving in” part might seem overwhelming, but we’re laying out some helpful tips so you can enjoy a stress-free move-in day.

1. Coordinate your move-in time with your roommate.

Imagine if both you and your roommate showed up at the same time on move-in day — you guys would be bumping elbows the whole time you’re unpacking! Space can get pretty tight with two families working in the same small space, so make sure you guys coordinate your time of arrival. You can always plan on moving in early in the morning, and then once your roommate shows up, how about heading out for a lunch break?


2. Label everything.

You’re lugging a lot of boxes up to your room on move-in day. It’ll save you a lot of stress (and time!) if you label each and every one of those boxes with helpful indicators like “bathroom essentials” or “bedding.” This way, you know exactly which boxes to tackle upon arrival rather than rummaging through everything and creating a mess!



3. Figure out what you can bring at a later date.

It’s entirely too tempting packing up your entire bedroom on move-in day! However, this definitely isn’t practical. If you’ve already gone through your packing list and nixed the items that aren’t necessary, we challenge you to take it a step further. Go through your list again and strike out any items you don’t need just yet. Certain belongings, like out-of-season clothing and extra decor, can make the trip over at a later date. Maybe there’s a day in the future where you’ll be visiting home. (Or your parents will be visiting you!)


4. Ask yourself what you can buy once you get to campus. 

Any precious space you can save in the car on move-in day is great! Check to see if there are any convenient shopping locations around campus with dorm essentials. That way, you can grab some of these extra items after the rest of your room is already unpacked.


5. Dress for the job, not to impress.

When you’re showing up on campus for the first time and meeting all of your new neighbors and potentials BFFs, it’s natural that you’d want to look your best. We’re here to remind you that move-in day is quite the workout — therefore, dress accordingly! Sneakers are definitely a must, and a T-Shirt or tank is probably more practical than a cute crop top or dress. Stick to these basics while you’re doing the heavy hauling, then you can always change to something more trendy once you’re settled in.


6. Look for volunteers on campus upon arrival.

The most important thing to remember on move-in day? There’s help available everywhere. Look for volunteers upon arrival (they’re likely sporting a T-Shirt to distinguish themselves!), and check in with them before you start doing any heavy lifting. They can likely point you toward a pushable cart where you can start unloading all of your bigger items.


7. Bring trash bags.

One thing you might not anticipate is the mess that can accumulate after unpacking a new space! There’s bound to be a bunch of empty boxes, torn-apart packaging, and used paper towels and cleaning wipes laying everywhere. Come prepared with a large trash bag so you can toss these items as needed.

What other helpful move-in day tips can you think of? Share your best suggestions in the comments below.


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  1. West Campus Apartments says:

    When you are starting out of college away from home, then having a roommate situation on an off-campus apartments may make sense. This is the start of the journey that will grow on you if you are comfortable sharing a space with someone or live on your own place.

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