Unpacking Tips: A Comprehensive Guide to Settling into Your New Home

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Author: Vlad Kandybovich

Meet Vlad Kandybovich, your friendly moving expert with over 10 years in the game! As the heart and soul behind QShark Moving Company, he has been a part of more than 50,000 moving journeys, helping individuals like you make smooth and stress-free transitions. Vlad is not just about the business; he genuinely cares about making each move a happy memory. So, when you are looking for advice or a tip on your next move, know that Vlads wisdom comes with a big dose of care and friendship. Happy moving!

Unpacking Tips: A Comprehensive Guide to Settling into Your New Home

Unpacking Tips

Moving into a new house can be both exciting and overwhelming. With boxes piled high and rooms waiting to be filled, the unpacking process might seem daunting. But fear not! With over eight years of experience and 50,000 moves under our belt, QShark Moving Company provides a step-by-step guide to make your unpacking journey smooth and efficient. Dive into our unpacking tips, and make your new space feel like home in no time.

SectionKey Unpacking Tips
Before You Start
  • Perform an inventory check
  • Gather necessary supplies
  • Designate a workspace
  • Plan your approach
Prioritize Your Unpacking
  • Start with the essentials box
  • Adopt a room-by-room approach
  • Involve family members
  • Unpack essentials first
  • Organize as you go
  • Set up the pantry
  • Set up the bed
  • Unpack essential clothing
  • Add personal touches
  • Set up essentials like toiletries and shower curtains
  • Organize smaller items
Living Room
  • Decide on furniture placement
  • Set up essential electronics
  • Focus on decor
Safety First
  • Use box cutters safely
  • Adopt proper lifting techniques
  • Keep walkways clear
Making it Feel Like Home
  • Add personal touches
  • Organize and declutter
  • Engage your senses


Congratulations on your move! You might wonder where to start as you stand in your new home surrounded by moving boxes. The journey from packing up your old house to unloading the moving truck into your place can be tiring. But the unpacking process is where the real transformation begins. It’s where your new house truly starts to feel like a home.

At QShark Moving Company, we’ve been a part of countless families’ journeys in turning their new houses into homes. Whether you’ve moved with our professional movers, Los Angeles experts, or any other dedicated crews, we’ve always emphasized the importance of an efficient process.

Here’s what we’ve learned:

  • The Right Start: Beginning the unpacking process can be overwhelming. But you can make the process smoother with a few tips and a strategic approach. For instance, always start unpacking your essentials box first. This box should contain toilet paper, hand soap, paper towels, and other essentials you’ll need on your first night.
  • Room-by-Room Approach: Tackling one room at a time ensures you don’t spread too thin. Whether it’s setting up the kids’ rooms, deciding on furniture placement in the living room, or organizing the dining room, a focused approach can make a world of difference.
  • Safety and Care: Remember to prioritize safety when unloading boxes and arranging furniture. Whether it’s ensuring you have the right room for furniture pieces or using packing materials like bubble wrap and packing paper correctly, every detail matters.
  • Making it Personal: The ultimate goal is to make your space feel personal and homely. From hanging up decorative items to ensuring a freshly made bed, every touch helps your house feel more like a home.

This guide delves deeper into these areas, providing a comprehensive list of unpacking tips. Whether you’re overwhelmed by the number of boxes or excited to start decorating, our tips, drawn from years of professional experience, will ensure you’re well-equipped for the journey ahead. So, let’s dive in and make your new house a home!

a picture of a special box for moving with qshark movers

2. Before You Start: Preparation is Key

Before diving into the process, some preparation can set the stage for a smoother experience. Here’s how to get started:

  • Inventory Check: Before unpacking, ensure all your boxes have arrived. Cross-check with the inventory list provided by your moving company. This step ensures that nothing was left behind in the moving truck or misplaced during the move.
  • Gather Supplies: While you might have packed away your scissors, box cutters, and other unpacking tools, now’s the time to get them out. Having these at hand will make the process of opening boxes much easier. Also, keep trash bags and recycling bins nearby for disposing of packing materials.
  • Designate a Workspace: Choose a space in your new home, perhaps the garage or a corner in the living room, where you can sort items, break down boxes, and organize packing materials like bubble wrap and packing paper. This helps in keeping the rest of the house clutter-free.
  • Plan Your Approach: Decide on the order in which you’ll tackle the rooms. Many prefer to start with essential spaces like the kitchen or bathroom. However, setting up their rooms might be a priority if you’ve moved with kids. No matter the order, having a plan can make the process feel less overwhelming.

3. Prioritize Your Unpacking

While opening every box in sight might be tempting, a strategic approach can save time and reduce stress.

  • Essentials Box: As mentioned earlier, always start with the essential items. This box should contain items you’ll need immediately, such as toilet paper, hand soap, shower curtains, and a few dishes for meals. If you’re unsure about what to include in label boxes, our step-by-step guide can help.
  • Room-by-Room Approach: Tackling one room at a time can make the task more manageable. For instance, setting up the kitchen allows you to prepare meals, making the new house functional from day one. Our organizing tips can help streamline this process.
  • Kids and Family: If you’ve moved with family, involve them in unpacking. Older kids can help set up their rooms, turning the task into a fun family activity. For younger children, setting up their room first can provide a sense of familiarity with the space.

4. Tips for Efficient Unpacking

With a plan, it’s time to dive into the unpacking. Here are some tips to make the process efficient:

  • Open One Box at a Time: This might seem obvious, but it’s easy to get sidetracked. Focus on unpacking and setting up one box before moving to the next.
  • Break Down Boxes: As you empty boxes, break them down and store them flat. This keeps your workspace tidy and prepares boxes for recycling or reuse. If you’re unsure about how to handle packing materials, our guide on how to use moving blankets and what is shrink wrap can provide insights.
  • Label Trash and Donation Piles: As you unpack, you might find items you no longer need. Label piles for trash, recycling, and donations. Our donation center can assist with items you wish to donate.
  • Personal Touches: Once the essentials are in place, focus on making the space feel personal. Hang up family photos, set out decorative items, and arrange furniture to your liking.
uinpacking tips for living room

5. Specialized Tips for Different Rooms

Each room in your house has its unique function and importance. Here’s how to approach unpacking for each space:


Setting up the kitchen at the heart of every home can make your important spaces functional from the get-go.

  • Essentials First: Begin with everyday dishes, utensils, and a coffee maker. Having the basics out means enjoying a meal without rummaging through boxes.
  • Organize as You Go: Think about the flow of your kitchen. Place items you use frequently in easily accessible spots. Pots, pans, and other cookware should be near the stove, while dishes and glasses might be best near the sink or dishwasher.
  • Pantry Setup: Organize your pantry items by type – cereals, canned goods, spices, etc. This will make meal prep and grocery shopping more efficient.


A personal sanctuary, setting up the bedrooms can provide a comfortable space to rest after a long day of unpacking.

  • Bed Setup: There’s nothing like a freshly made bed to end your day. Start with the bed – assemble it, lay the mattress, and set up the bedding. Our guide on how to use moving blankets can provide additional insights if you’ve used blankets for protection during the move.
  • Clothing: Unpack essential clothing first. Transferring clothes to closets will be a breeze if you’ve used wardrobe boxes. For other clothing, consider organizing by season or function.
  • Personal Touches: Add lamps, photos, and other personal items to make the room feel cozy and personalized.


A functional bathroom is essential from day one.

  • Essentials Setup: Unpack toiletries, shower curtains, hand soap, toilet paper, and towels first. These are the basics you’ll need immediately.
  • Organizing Tips: Use organizers or bins for cosmetics, toiletries, and other smaller items. This keeps countertops clutter-free and items easily accessible.

Living Room

The communal space where families come together.

  • Furniture Placement: Start by deciding on the placement of large furniture pieces like sofas, coffee tables, and bookshelves. If you’re unsure, our furniture placement guide offers expert advice.
  • Electronics: Set up essential electronics like the TV, sound systems, and gaming consoles. Ensure cords are organized and safely tucked away.
  • Decor: Once the essentials are in place, focus on decorative items like rugs, artwork, and other decor to make the space warm and inviting.

6. Safety First

While setting up your new home is exciting, safety should always be a priority.

  • Safe Box Cutter Use: Always cut away from yourself and retract the blade when unused.
  • Lifting Techniques: If you’re moving heavy items, always lift with your legs and not your back. Consider using moving straps for heavier furniture.
  • Keep Walkways Clear: As you unpack, ensure hallways and walkways are clear of boxes and packing materials to avoid tripping hazards.
tips to make your new space feel like a home

7. Making it Feel Like Home

After the essentials are in place and the rooms are functional, the next step is to infuse your personal touch, making your new house truly feel like a home.

Personal Touches

  • Photos and Memories: Hang family photos, artwork, or any memorabilia that brings back fond memories. These personal touches instantly make a space feel familiar and loved.
  • Rugs and Textiles: Soft furnishings like rugs, curtains, throw pillows, and blankets can add warmth and comfort to a room, making it cozy and inviting.
  • Plants: Introduce indoor plants to your living space. They enhance aesthetics, improve air quality, and bring a touch of nature indoors.

Organize and Declutter

  • A Place for Everything: As the saying goes, “A place for everything and everything in its place.” Ensure every item has a designated spot. This not only helps in keeping the house tidy but also makes finding things easier.
  • Declutter: You might find items you no longer need or want as you unpack. Consider donating these to our donation center or organizing a garage sale.
  • Seek Professional Help: If you feel overwhelmed with organizing your bedroom, consider hiring a professional organizer. They can provide expert insights and solutions tailored to your needs.

Engage Your Senses

  • Fragrance: Introduce pleasant fragrances using candles, diffusers, or incense. Familiar scents can evoke memories and make a space feel more like home.
  • Music: Play your favorite tunes or calming music in the background as you unpack and set up. It uplifts the mood and makes the process enjoyable.
  • Taste: Cook your first meal, even if it’s something simple. Cooking and enjoying a meal can make the new space feel lived-in and homely.

8. Conclusion: Unpacking process

Moving and setting up a new home is a significant milestone. While it comes with challenges, it’s also an opportunity to start fresh, organize your space, and make new memories. At QShark Moving Company, we’ve been privileged to participate in many such journeys. We hope our tips have made your transition smoother.

Remember, it’s not just about unpacking boxes; it’s about crafting a space where you and your family can thrive. So, take a moment to celebrate this new chapter, relish the memories you’ll create, and enjoy every moment in your new home.


Over the years, we’ve encountered numerous questions from our clients about the process. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions, along with our expert answers:

Q1: How long should the unpacking process typically take?
A1: The duration varies based on the size of the move and individual pace. While some might take a week, others might need a month. The key is not to rush. Take your time to set up each room thoughtfully. Our step-by-step guide can provide a structured approach.

Q2: What should I do with all the used packing materials?
A2: Many packing materials, like boxes and bubble wrap, can be recycled. Consider reusing them for storage or future moves. Alternatively, our donation center might accept certain materials, or you could offer them to neighbors and friends.

Q3: I’ve realized I have more stuff than space. What should I do?
A3: This is a common challenge. Consider decluttering and donating items you no longer need. If certain belongings have sentimental value but no immediate use, think about storage solutions in your home or through storage facilities.

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