10 Tips for Moving Out of a College Dorm

Though you probably feel like you just moved in to your college dorm or apartment,  it’s time to move back out. The end of the semester is already stressful enough between finals, graduation, and saying goodbyes for the summer without packing up your entire life being thrown into the mix. But moving out of your dorm doesn’t have to give you a headache. If you start before finals and follow these 10 tips for moving out of a college dorm, you’ll be packed up in no time with minimal stress and and fatigue.

10 Tips for Moving Out of a College Dorm

  1. Create an Essentials List

    You’ll need to use some of the things in your dorm the day you’re moving out: toiletries, a change of clothes, your cellphone charger. Start by creating a list of the essentials you need to get ready in the morning and the things you can’t live without throughout the day. Closer to move out date, set these things aside from the items you’re packing up. Future you will be thankful you have your phone charger on hand and not lost in one of your fifteen packed boxes.

  2. Start Packing Before Finals

    If you utilize only one tip from this list, it should be this: do not wait to start packing until finals. Studying for and taking finals is mentally exhausting, and the last thing you’ll want to do is plan and start packing after completing 3-5 exams. Slowly take down wall hangings and pack clothing or books you don’t need until next semester. Even if the only thing you do before finals is create a list of what needs to be done, you can follow the instructions of that list and not use extra brainpower you probably don’t have to start getting organized.

  3. Separate Your Belongings from Your Roommate’s

    If you have a roommate, there’s a pretty good chance some of your items have meshed, whether that’s food, kitchen utensils, or books. Schedule time with your roommate to separate your belongings, even if it’s as simple as moving your items to one side of the room and their items to the other. After this scheduled organizing, you can both pack at your own pace and not worry about things accidentally ending up in someone else’s boxes.

  4. Sort Everything Into Two Groups

    Sort and then pack everything in these two groups: what you won’t need until fall and what will need over the summer. This way you won’t need to sort through boxes of items you don’t need for the one thing you do need. Nonessential items can go into storage until next semester, and you won’t waste time unpacking and repacking during your summer break.

  5. Clean Out Your Mini-Fridge

    Don’t forget to clean out your mini-fridge before you unplug it. Try to use everything in the days leading up to finals so you can clean and defrost it for the move.

  6. Take or Send Stuff Home

    If you have items in your dorm you definitely don’t need any more (i.e. it’s spring break, and you won’t need your winter parka for 8 months), bring them home on a separate trip before finals if you’re within driving distance. Or if you have a sibling or parent who will be in the area before the end of the semester, ask them if they can swing by and pick up some things to bring home.

  7. Sort Through Assignments and Textbooks

    Get rid of homework assignments you won’t need and drop textbooks off at the textbook buy back program on campus. Only keep the papers and projects you’re proud of or think you’ll need to reference or use in a portfolio later. Chances are, you’re not going to need your Intro to Mathematics homework or textbook, so there’s no need hanging on to them for a few years until you finally get rid of them.

  8. Know Your Move Out Procedure

    Most dorms have a move out procedure; familiarize yourself with yours. Your RA should have a check list of what needs to happen, like scheduling a move out time for the RA to do a final look around and what in your dorm needs to be cleaned or repaired by you.

  9. Clean Before Leaving

    Make sure you clean the dorm before leaving. Some colleges might have a fine for dorm rooms left dirty by the former tenants. Create a list of what needs cleaning and divide it fairly between you and your roommate.

    Examples of things you might need to clean:
    -dust furniture that belongs to the school
    -clean the bathroom (if you’re lucky enough to have one of your own)
    -mop and sweep
    -empty the trash

  10. Split a Storage Unit with Friends

    If you’re returning to campus in the fall, consider splitting a storage unit with your friends. This is especially useful for students who live out of state. The cost of splitting a storage unit with a few friends will be much lower than taking a few trips to move everything home, storing in your bedroom for a few months, and then hauling everything back again at the start of the semester. Certain storage facilities may offer student discounts as well. And if you start your storage lease a week or two before move out day, you can slowly move items over rather than doing one mass, stressful move out trip(s).

Even though moving out will be much easier than moving in (because you won’t have to unpack most of these things for a while), it will still be a little hectic and draining. Start your planning early, pack a little every day, and follow these tips for moving out of a college dorm or apartment. You might find the move is easier than you thought.

Moving U & Junk U College Dorm Moving Services

Moving U & Junk U can accommodate any moving needs you might have. Whether that’s taking care of your whole move, helping with loading and unloading, or just loading for you at the start of your move. Whatever help you’re looking for, we can customize our service to fit your needs.

If you have any junk removal that comes up during packing, like an old futon or broken television, Moving U & Junk U can haul that away so you don’t have to worry about it. Give us a call or text at 484-301-2442 or email us at info@movingujunku.com. We’ll schedule a time to remove your junk before your move out date and that doesn’t interfere with with your finals. You shouldn’t have the extra stress of packing, transporting, and storing a bulky item you don’t even need.


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Moving U & Junk U is a full-service moving and junk removal company located in the Greater Philadelphia Area, Reading, PA, and Dayton, OH

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