Planning on taking the plunge and moving into a new place with your significant other? Moving day can be one of the most exciting experiences of the journey -- as long as everything goes smoothly, of course.
By the way, you're not alone. A survey by the National Center for Health Statistics found 48 percent of women ages 15-44 interviewed between 2006 and 2010 had lived with a male partner before marriage -- compared with 34 percent of women in 1995.
Use these tips to keep the first day you live together organized and easy.
Toss What You Won't Use
Many couples move only to realize once they start packing that they have more than they know what to do with. To reduce the excess, you and your partner should spend a few days clearing out your respective clutter before you move. Go room by room and take out anything you haven't used in six months. You can sell those items or donate them to charity for a tax deduction at the end of the year.
Once you're both done purging your stuff, decide what will go into your new home. Making these decisions may not be easy, but finding agreement ahead of time will make moving easier. To avoid arguments, start by deciding what is a "must keep" for both of you and then use a floor plan of your new home to decide where to put your favorite items. Finally, fill up the rest of the space with your best pieces and sell or store the rest.
Moving inevitably comes with costs. Before you move, sit down and decide how you'll do the move. For example, do you want to pay for professional movers or rent a truck and enlist the help of friends? How are you situated with boxes and other package supplies? Once you have a plan, set a date with the movers or friends and find packing supplies as soon as possible. Being an early bird may help you cut costs.
Create a Battle Plan
Packing and moving from two separate locations can get hectic, but a well-organized plan will keep problems to a minimum. For example, a few days -- or weeks -- before you move, come up with a battle plan that includes packing each person's belongings and setting the pick-up times for each house. It will also help to assign tasks ahead of time. If you both know your roles, you'll be able to work faster and avoid arguments in the process.
Keep Boxes Organized and Labeled
Combining stuff is more complicated than moving one person. To avoid moving day mistakes, make sure your boxes are well organized. For example, writing the designated room on each box will make the moving process easier, and writing the content of each box will make unpacking a breeze.
If you can get through the move smoothly, it might just mean you're meant for each other.
Follow realtor.com on Twitter: www.twitter.com/realtordotcom