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Whether you’re on or off campus, moving out can be extremely stressful. It can take anywhere from a few hours to multiple days depending on your current living situation. I’m hoping that a few of these tips can save you from the panic that moving out brings!

Pack gradually, rather than all at once

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a last-minute packer. I often end up forgetting something or doing a small task before regretting it as soon as I’m on the road. Learn from my mistakes, and pack gradually as the semester comes to an end. You can ask yourself questions such as “Do I really need my winter jacket at the beginning of May?” or “Will my canvas fit with the rest of my stuff when I leave Blacksburg?” Only you know the answers to these questions, but they’ll be more than helpful once you start tackling your belongings. If you plan on going home before the end of the semester, take some of that stuff with you, and save yourself from piling everything into your trunk on your move-out day!

Read through your lease or housing contract in full

I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to read your lease or housing contract! I know that it’s a long document, but there’s a reason behind that. From unexpected costs to move-out procedures, it’s got you covered from the day you move in until the day your lease or contract ends. If you’re currently off campus, your lease will walk you through getting your security deposit in full. My two biggest recommendations are to check for stains and to vacuum. Stains don’t take long to remove, but will definitely save you during room inspections. Vacuuming will get rid of last-minute dirt you might have tracked into your room while giving you a final once-over of your carpet or floors to check for stains you might’ve missed.

Take photos of everything the day that you move out

After you’ve cleaned everything, take as many photos as possible of your living space the day that you move out. It’s always better to have proof that you’ve properly cleaned everything to avoid incurring any unexpected fees. If you took photos at the start of your lease, keep those on hand! You need to be able to show your landlord or RA that whatever they claim you did was there before you moved in! If your apartment complex is only handling emergency maintenance issues, be sure to make note of any non-emergency issues you may have had so you’re not penalized.

Moving out can be challenging, but taking things one day at a time will take plenty of stress off your shoulders. Best of luck to my fellow Hokies rounding out another school year!

Camden Carpenter

Virginia Tech '21

Senior studying Smart and Sustainable Cities, with hopes to become a traveling urban developer. Attemping to embody "Carpe Diem" in her everyday life, both physically by getting a tattoo of the quote, and mentally by taking risks while trying to maximize each day's full potential.
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