Last-Minute Moving: How to Pack to Move in a Hurry

Okay, first thing’s first: take a deep breath.

Moving quickly is no easy task, but you’re here to answer one thing: “how to pack to move in a hurry?”

There are a lot of different criteria and things to think about with a complicated process such as this, but we’ve gone ahead and narrowed it down to the essentials, just for you.

From having to find a place to live to whether or not you should hire moving companies, we’ve got you covered.

Moving in a Hurry: House Hunting

If you’ve just been notified that you have to move soon, this part is for you.

Moving quickly is already stressful, but if you haven’t even found a place to move to, you’re probably biting your nails as you read.

Here is a quick guide to finding a place to live when moving in a hurry.

Look for What You Need

To start hunting for your new home, take a minute and write down what you need. Your list should include things like:

  • What are you willing to pay?
  • Do you need/want AC?
  • Do you need/want a dishwasher?
  • Where do you want it located?
  • Does the place need to be animal friendly?

Once you have criteria like that decided, you can go to a housing-specific search engine. These will let you put in your criteria and they’ll find housing that meets most if not all of them.

A great starting point is

How Are Your Financials?

Having to move quickly is the worst because you likely haven’t saved specifically for a move.

If you don’t have enough money to afford an apartment or a house on your own, it’s time to start looking for some roommates. You can start by asking friends or a significant other if you have one.

This way you can live with someone you know you can count on and you are already familiar with.

If neither of these options works out for you, immediately start looking for however many roommates you need.

Good places to start are RoomsterRoommates, and Craigslist.

If you go the Craigslist route, please be careful. You never know who people are these days.

Consider Your Options

It may be the case that you simply can’t move to a new place at the moment. Whether it’s because you have insufficient funds or you just have too much on your plate right now, you need to weigh your options.

Moving in with a friend temporarily is one to check out. This will allow you to save some money and then find a place when you can.

A less ideal alternative is moving in with your parents. Your parents have lived through a lot and have likely got through a similar situation.

Staying with them until you can get on your feet again maybe your best bet.

How to Pack to Move in a Hurry: The Harsh Reality

After finding your new place, it’s time to start the packing process.

When you’re moving in a hurry, you have to be bitterly honest with yourself and those around you.

This is NOT going to be easy. You and those helping you need to understand this before you even start the process.

There are no loopholes or shortcuts. When you take this in, it will definitely make the quick-moving process a lot smoother.

But where do you start? Great questions deserve great answers. So, read on to get 5 great tips on how to move quickly.

  1. Think Logically

This is the quick planning phase of your move. You need to make a solid plan and make some checklists so that way your move can pass quickly and smoothly.

When planning, ask yourself questions like “how much time do I have?” “how big/small is my new place?” “do I need to hire a moving company?”.

Once you answer questions like these, you can start making your time and resource-efficient plan.

  1. Chuck the Junk

It’s time to say goodbye to your useless trinkets and the contents of your junk drawer.

The chances are, you found a less-than-ideal place to replace your current home and this new living set-up doesn’t have enough room for all of your stuff.

I know it’s sad to see that one guitar string from your first guitar goes in the trash, but you need to bring your essentials.

A good idea is to make three piles when cleaning out your house. The first pile is a “Throw Away” pile, where you put all sorts of trash and items that have no value to you.

The second pile is a “Donate” pile. Put things that you don’t want or you can’t take with you here. Give these items to your local thrift store or Goodwill if you have one.

The last pile is the “Keep” piles where you keep all of the smaller things (not big furniture because obviously you’ll be taking most of that).

Just to keep things tight and essential, you want the “Throw Away” and “Donate” piles to be the largest.

If you really don’t want to part with some of the small things, that’s okay! Just be sure to account for some storage space in your new place so you can put some boxes in there until you finally move to a more desired home.

  1. Phone a Friend

Don’t do this alone. Seriously. It’s already enough stress having to pack for a quick move, but doing it yourself is a load no one should take alone.

Call up your friends and family to help you with the whole process.

They can help you divide up your house into the aforementioned three piles as well as helping you move your stuff over to your new place if you decide to not go with a moving company.

  1. Boxes and Bags

When you think of moving, your mind probably thinks of endless amounts of boxes. Do you ever think of bags, though?

Yes, that’s right. Trash bags can also be your best friends during your move right next to boxes. Which one should you use though?


Boxes are classic and efficient. They can hold pretty much anything and they come in all kinds of sizes.

Boxes should really hold all of the hard, heavy, and angular stuff. Things like books, board games, files, etc.

Really things that can’t be compressed and items that aren’t fragile.

Surprisingly, boxes can be pretty expensive. If you’re looking for well-priced boxes, is a good place to start looking.


Trash bags are definitely less glamorous than boxes. In fact, the thought of toting your belongings around in trash bags might make feel a little embarrassed in your head.

Honestly, it’s time to set your pride aside and think of the pros.

All of your clothes can be thrown into trash bags, and the minimum amount of trash bags too. Since your clothes aren’t angular, you can really just throw them in the trash bag until it’s full.

Depending on the size of your wardrobe, you can probably fit it all in around 3-4 trash bags.

Trash bags also make it easier to transport your belongings. A trash bag full of clothes doesn’t weigh very much and the drawstrings make it easy to carry around.

If you head to your local grocery store and buy large, strong trash bags, you’ll be good to go.

All of this to say, splitting your money between boxes and bags is a good idea to make the most of your money.

  1. Moving Companies?

Moving companies have been mentioned, but not elaborated on. They definitely have their pros and cons.

But really what it boils down to is you.

Do you think hiring a moving company would be best for your situation? Or do you think moving it yourself with friends and family would be better?

This is something you should determine during your planning stage as it can really dictate the process of your move.

Start Packing!

Your situation is definitely not ideal and will be a horror story for your days to come. But, you will be thankful for the experience you took from it and the knowledge of how to pack to move in a hurry.

This compact guide should aid you in your packing process and will hopefully ease your transition.

If this article helped you out, feel free to share it so it can help others!

If you want to see some similar content, go ahead and check out our blog!

Good luck, and happy moving!


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