This month, my family and I are on the move! True story: We just bought a new house and I could not be more excited. With 2 kids, school schedules, both my work and my husband’s, and a dog… it’s going to be a little insane trying to pack up and unpack again (if only the dog had some opposable thumbs, she could be a bit more helpful). And so I turn, forever and always, to the one thing I know will help me muddle through: technology. After a successful search for my favorite moving apps, I’m sharing a few digital tools I plan to use to keep the move to our new home from moving me to tears.
Walkscore is actually a great site to check out before you buy a home or sign a lease. You can search a neighborhood or a specific address, and the site will show you different house prices and rentals available in your new hood. But even if your new address has already been decided, Walkscore is great way to explore your new neighborhood online. It shows you walkable, bikeable or drivable bars and restaurants in your area (because I anticipate needing more than a few cocktails during this process), and outlines what kinds of public transport are available near your new digs.
I came close to kissing my iPhone when I found this: It’s like LendingTree but for your move. You can tell it where you are and it helps you compare and find only the best moving companies in your area. They’ll also create inventory lists for you — you just need to video tape your house and send the feed over to them (they have an iPhone app to make this process really easy). Then they’ll assign you a Move Captain who will liaison with the movers for you and who will handle the details while you focus on the big stuff. They make booking easy and provide you with one transparent cost ahead of time.
This little gem-of-an-app allows you to track all of your belongings. How? By creating labels and scan-able bar codes so that you can catalog all of your things as you pack. Save the details of your move all in one place and print a master inventory list before anything is loaded into the truck on the big day. Now if the truck arrives at your new pad and some of your stuff doesn’t, this app will help you identify what’s missing in flash. You can even use it to create and print insurance claims, photos and damage reports.
Redbeacon knows pros. When you’re new in town and need to hire a housecleaner, a plumber or painter — finding someone talented and trustworthy is no small task. The people at Redbeacon interview and complete a background check on every professional they refer. Simply make a request online for any job that needs doing — you can even provide them with pictures if that helps — and they’ll send you up to four Redbeacon-approved professionals who can help you out on your timeline.
This site can be a real lifesaver for those of us who like to understand and plan things visually. Comb through their addictive site and create 2D and 3D layouts of furniture you can buy directly through them when you’re done. Wondering if that couch will look good with that coffee table? Now you can find out before you buy it. You can upload pictures of room features (like windows, doors and rugs) from Google in order to create the layout that reflects your space — then fill it up with the new furniture you love. One giant step in the battle against buyer’s remorse!
Ahhhh, I can feel myself relaxing already. I think change is a great thing for all of us — and I know that a well-organized change is the best thing for me. With these systems, sites and apps in place, I can spend less time worrying about my stuff and more time worrying about my family. So move over markers and masking tape, Mama’s got tech and she’s not afraid to move with it.
Carley Knobloch is obsessed with helping people use technology to make life easier (and more fun). As a Today Show contributor and HGTV host, she explores the world of home control and makes tech accessible to even the least savvy. On her blog,CarleyK.com, she helps busy women navigate the modern world beautifully and efficiently. She is also the creator and host of the Webby-nominated show Digitwirl, which celebrates time, money and sanity saving technology. She has spread her gospel of “Forward Living” on CNN, Ricki Lake, EXTRA, and in Real Simple and Bloomberg BusinessWeek. She resides in Los Angeles with her husband, two kids, springer spaniel, and myriad tablets.
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