Don't Be THAT Friend When You Need Help Moving

Photographed by Amy Lomard.
We’re at the height of moving season, which means that if you’re relocating, you’re also probably looking for some good movers to help you haul your stuff. If you’ve got the money, you can choose from any number of professionals to assist you in your home swap. But if you’re on a tight budget, you’re likely going to count on the free movers you already have in your contacts: your friends.

Here’s the thing: Your friends don’t want to help you move. Of course, they aren’t going to say no. They love you and are willing to help you in this time of need. But make no mistake, waking up at the ass-crack of dawn to haul someone else’s 100-pound bed frame up six flights of un-air-conditioned stairs is no one’s idea of a good time. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of 10 handy moving tips, to keep your friends happy on hauling day. So read on — you (and more importantly, your friends) will thank us.

Moving is the worst. And the best. It can signal a fresh start or a devastating end. Whatever your style, wherever you settle, at the end of day, the most important thing is you find a place to call home. Check out more from our Get The F Out moving package here.

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Illustrated by Natalia Spotts.
Everything about packing sucks. If you buy boxes, you will have to waste hours of your life assembling and taping said boxes. If you don’t buy boxes, you will need to troll the dumpsters in your neighborhood, in hopes of finding some unsoiled freebies. Then, you’ve got to sift through the mountains of belongings that you’ve acquired while living in your soon-to-be-vacated apartment, and stuff them into those boxes. But even though packing is an epic time/soul suck, do not save it for moving day. Your friends only signed up to help you move; packing is a whole different pizza party. Don’t pull the lame, “Oh, and I forgot to pack half my belongings” bait-and-switch. If your friends arrive to discover an unpacked apartment, they will no doubt be deeply pissed.
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Illustrated by Natalia Spotts.
Still clinging to your childhood collection of Beanie Babies? Have a tough time parting with the Hanson poster collection of your youth? Or maybe you’ve just amassed approximately 700 free (and unused) tote bags, which you’re “saving just in case.” Here’s a tip: Throw them in the trash. Now. Your friends have graciously agreed to help you move, not film an episode of A&E’s Hoarders.
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Illustrated by Natalia Spotts.
If you get early access to your new apartment, take advantage of this. Make a few smaller solo trips to your dream pad, to reduce the ultimate moving-day load. Throw your winter clothes in trash bags, round up a couple lighter items that you can carry yourself, and call yourself an Uber to carry out your mini-move. Doing a few small trips before the big one can make a significant difference. It will decrease your overall move time, which will increase the happiness of your friends who are giving up their weekend to help you out.
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Illustrated by Natalia Spotts.
Your friends woke up insanely early to help you move in 100-degree heat. They did not rise at this ungodly hour to sweat their balls off in a parking lot waiting for you to rent a U-Haul.

Renting a truck takes time. A lot of it. Be sure to book your U-Haul well in advance and pick it up before your friends come over. It’s moving season, which means the necessary vehicles are in high demand. You don’t want to be stuck without a van on moving day, because you will also be stuck with a bunch of unhappy former friends.
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Illustrated by Natalia Spotts.
It is scientifically proven that early Mariah Carey is the perfect soundtrack for any moving day. Beyond this, there are no guaranteed hits when it comes to moving playlists. When in doubt, it is best to defer to the requests of your friends. Today is not the day to try to convince your besties of the value of atonal noise rock. Surrender your Spotify to your BFFs, and let them choose the music they wish to listen to while they work. No matter how annoyed you may be by their selections, keep your mouth shut. You have zero playlist veto power when your friends are schlepping your shit, even if they subject you to Meghan Trainor’s greatest hits.
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Illustrated by Natalia Spotts.
Pets love to escape on moving day. Nothing will please your rebel pug more than going AWOL, when one of your friends accidentally leaves the front door open after carrying out your sofa. Your friends are here to help you move, not form a search party for Mr. Whiskers. Make sure to lock your pet in one room for the duration of the move, and be sure to let all your friends know which room this is (or even better, find someone to pet sit for the day). Moving is one of the most stressful activities a human can engage in, you don’t need to add the hunt for a lost dog to the mix.
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Illustrated by Natalia Spotts.
But I’m just going to have to clean my apartment again after all my stuff is out, you are likely whining to yourself right now. Though this is true, it is no excuse to let your apartment turn into a giant trash can before you move. In fact, your place should be ACAP (As Clean As Possible) when your friends come over to help you. Your friends aren’t here to throw out your leftover takeout from last night or clean your toilet. Show some respect and tidy up before they come. It will also make the end of the day faster, if you have less cleaning to do on the back-end of your move.
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Illustrated by Natalia Spotts.
There is an endless variety of tasks to complete during any move: from cleaning, to furniture disassembling, to wall spackling, to box fetching. Make sure you have a plan of attack when heading into your move. Efficiency is key to making everything quick and painless. If your friends are running around aimlessly, unsure of what task to complete, they're more likely to get super pissed at you for wasting their time — or to assume their work is done and just take off. That said, make sure to delegate delicately; you also don’t want to turn into a moving-day dictator.
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Illustrated by Natalia Spotts.
So, you just saved hundreds of bucks by cashing in on your friendships and forcing your besties to help you move. Show them a little gratitude with some sexy takeout. Pizza is, of course, the traditional dish of friend-fueled moves everywhere. But why not amp things up with a bougie pizza — maybe something deep-dish or wood-fired? And don’t you dare skimp on booze. Your best friends just hauled all your crappy Ikea furniture across town for you. They deserve unlimited cocktails to ease their pain.
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Illustrated by Natalia Spotts.
You make $100,000 dollars a year, and you’re making your friends help you move?! What kind of sadist are you? Stop writing that favor-text to your BFF this minute, and get online and book yourself a professional mover. If you are over the age of 32 and make over $75,000 a year, it is unconscionable for you to demand moving help from your friends. Also, why would you voluntarily subject yourself to the sweaty horrors of moving, when you can just pay someone to do it for you? Get thee to Google and book thyself some pros.
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