Every parent’s fear. Every college students disappointment. It’s the end of the second semester and time to move out of the dorm room. Students are disappointed because it’s the end of the year. Parent’s fear it because it’s time to pack everything up. At this stage in their lives, the students should be old enough and able to handle this without mom and dad breathing down their necks. But, as parents, we know moving is stressful and we want to help them as much as we can. Even if we’re far from them and can’t be there ourselves to help. Here are some moving out of the dorm tips on getting organized and packed up easily.
- Cleaning – I would suggest that you have your student do as much of the cleaning as they can before they leave for spring break. Yes, this is a little early, but with only two months to go, there’s not a lot of time with finals around the corner. And we don’t want to give them any excuses to wait until the last minute and rush around the day before leaving their dorm rooms. For spring cleaning suggest to them:
- Throw out anything broken or no longer working – That desk lamp that got knocked over a few times. Those charging cords that no longer work. Yes, we all have them. The cords are lucky to last a few months! Pens that no longer write.
- Bring home clothes no longer needed – If they come home for spring break, have them bring home their winter clothes. If they know they’re only going to wear certain clothes the rest of the year, have them bring other clothes and/or shoes home. Any bedding they won’t need as well.
- Pantry/Refrigerator – Have them go through their food. Anything opened (chips, pretzels, crackers) throw away if they are stale. Anything in the fridge they know has been there more than a week? Toss into the trash.
- Books – If they no longer need their textbooks, get a jumpstart on selling them back to the college bookstore for credit the next semester. Or sell them on Amazon or eBay for the cash. But stipulate to them, the money is for books the next semester lol! Not for the last hurrah before the end of the semester.
- Packing – I highly recommend that they come back from spring break with storage bins instead of boxes. Suggest to them, to start packing things each week, starting a month before move out. If their beds are raised, they can simply shove the bins under there. Make sure they have bubble wrap to wrap up fragile items. I don’t suggest bags because it’s easier to topple while driving. They are not steady and secure.
- Summer storage – I think this is a necessary to add to this list of moving out of the dorm tips. If your student has a lot of things, such as a mini fridge, a microwave or any other bulky items, you may want to consider storing it for the summer. Most storage places run about $40 – $70 a month. If they have friends and/or dormmates, maybe have them all go in on it together to cut down costs. They can all put their items in their designated spots in the storage unit. Make sure to call places ahead of time to secure your unit in case other’s are doing the same.
- Collaborate – If students are driving home on their own, i.e. no family member there to help, they can get together and help each other moving things from the dorm room to their cars and/or storage units. If they are sharing a storage unit, they can rent a small moving truck and drop their things off to the unit in one trip instead of multiple trips. Especially if they can’t fit everything in their cars. Then help each other with the final trip of things that are going home with them.
- Donations – During the purge and packing process, they should have a donate pile. Things they won’t use again, but still has a lot of life in it.
- Final walk through – Make sure everything is out from under the beds, desks, and dressers. If the college requires the students to clean, make sure they have the supplies, or share cost again with friends to share supplies.
What other moving out of the dorm tips would you include? Comment below or share on my Facebook page! Now, time to enjoy the summer! Download the free printable Moving out of the Dorm Checklist.
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My stepson will be graduating in May, so this is very timely. I need to make sure he remembers to take all of his stuff.
I well remember those days. All of my kids have graduated from college and I remember hounding them about selling those books after they were done with them.
It’s always great to get as much moved early as you can. I have some fairly horrid memories of trying to clean my dorm at the last minute lol.
Oh my gosh that brings the back. I remember them well and I love them. Into years time I moved from the dorm room to an apartment to a dorm room to another dorm room to an apartment. I probably could’ve use this post back then LOL. Great tips.
That first year is always such a learning experience for both parents and student. So much stuff was packed that wasn’t needed that first year. This is a great post to help those first year students.
These all sound like great tips. I won’t have a college age child for a while, but I remember cleaning out the dorm room myself!
I am so glad it is almost the end of the college year even though my kids commute. I’m ready for more us time! I’ll miss my “other” daughter (neighbor) because she’s staying in her college town all summer to work 🙁
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Oh gosh I can imagine moving out of a dorm can be very stressful. I guess my only tip from moving home would be plan and label!
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Bins make moving so much easier. I like to get the clear ones so I can see what is in them instead of having to open them.
Our teenage daughter was thinking about going away for college, but decided to attend a local school and live in our basement. I guess I’m thankful.
Moving can be exciting and daunting at the same time. I remember when I moved out from my college dorm.
These are all great tips but the best of them all is to sell back the books, especially if they are ones you won’t need in coming years. Bringing them home just to bring them back again is so much work and they can get pretty heavy! Great ideas!
I have one leaving for college in a few years. Thank you for pointing out some great tips.
My daughter isn’t exactly at this point yet. But it definitely makes me think about organization and ways to teach my daughter to be more organized.
This makes a complicated process much easier. I have a few year before I get here.
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These are great tips. I love the idea of renting out a storage unit and splitting the cost with two or three friends who need to store some stuff too.
These are fabulous tips. I think my fave tip was renting the unit and splitting the cost. It’s such a great way to save money in an otherwise expensive world
This is a great list for keeping moving out of anywhere in line! I would hate having to move so often as a college student.
These are some great tips. Although I have never had the dorm experience (neither me or my daughter have stayed in dorms), I know a lot of people whose kids did, and when they got ready to move out for the year, it was a tough task. Having your kids be prepared is a great idea.
Shifting is really a hectic task. Thanks for the great tips.
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I vividly remember helping our daughter move back home from college for the summer. It seemed that she had more stuff to bring back than she did when she first moved in! We’re now into her Junior year and we will send these ideas to her so she can work on reducing the amount of extra stuff she has. These tips on reducing the amount bringing back will be invaluable to those who have to move their kids out of the dorm until the following semester.
Moving can be so stressful, even for us parents! These are all great tips and I especially love the storage bins with lids, as these keep things so much more organized! I love them and even use them in my home. I also love how you covered about getting rid of all the UNWANTED or no longer working items. This would hopefully make for an easier and less moving job.
We live in a college town and this week, in fact, is finals. In a few days there will be u-hauls and pick-up trucks everywhere as the students head home for the summer. I’m loving your list of tips .. there’s really a lot to remember!
This is a great post with many great tips. My oldest use to always forget her charging cords, it never failed!
Great tips. I have a few years before we are thinking about this for our kids but I know it will go fast! I remember my dorm days fondly. It was a great time of my life.
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As my Daughter is getting ready to go visit colleges, this list is needed as we begin to prepare for those college years.
After years of wishing that she would stay home, I am now excited for her leaving and beginning her adventures 😉
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It always goes by too fast-first moving in only to move it all out and do it again in a few months. They accumulate so much by move out
I never lived in the dorm (I lived on South Beach during college…lol those were the days), so I didn’t have to deal with this. My stepdaughter did live in the dorm and decided to apartment dwell. Luckily she’s pretty independent and did a lot herself! HAHA we just bought the car (which I’m not sure whether it was a better deal for us or not lol).
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These are great tips! What an exciting time of life!
I cant believe I was doing this over 10 years ago. Gosh college didnt even seem like it was a decade ago for me. I had my own dorm to myself thankfully and I had to do all of these tips!
This sure brought some great memories back! Thanks for this.
Great tips, always donate and/or sell anything that you can leave behind, never throw out anything another person can use.