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How to Move Out of a Dorm

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When you move into a dorm for university, you can forget just how temporary that move is. In only a few months, you will have to move out of that same living area. If you need to change housing, the dorm move out could be even sooner and without the luxury of having your destination be your childhood home. How can you make moving out of your dorm easy?


The first step to an efficient dorm move-out is limiting the amount of frivolous things you acquire during the semester. You know from day one that you will be living in your dorm for only three and a half months. 
  • Don't overdecorate. All of that needs to be gone when you move out.
  • Don't store things in your dorm. Space is often limited and if you stockpile anything you'll regret it when move-out day approaches.
  • Keep it clean. All messes and dirt need to be cleaned up before you move out or you risk facing fines.
  • Avoid damaging or altering anything in the dorm. It should be left as it was when you arrived. If you need to repair something, do it ahead of time so you aren't scrambling when it is time to move.

Lighten your load

Get rid of anything that you don't need to take with you. If it isn't worth taking with you, it isn't worth keeping and it certainly can't be left in your dorm.
  • As the semester ends, sell all of your books (you could keep ones that you may use later in your major) to the school's bookstore or online on a site like Amazon. This should get you some money, but will never fully cover the price of the new books.
  • Broken or unwanted items can be sold, thrown out, or recycled.
  • Eat all of your food. Don't buy new groceries as move-out day approaches.
  • Try to use up all of your disposable household products like soap and paper towels so you don't need to pack and move them.


If you keep the number of belongings in your dorm low, the packing process should be relatively easy. Remember to do what you can before moving day.
  • Clothes can be packed first, especially if they are no longer seasonally appropriate. Plan a few day's worth of clothes before moving day to pack everything else and get a head start.
  • Clean while you are packing. Moving things out of the way will reveal areas that need to be cleaned before you leave.
  • Use the moving boxes from your move in if you still have them.
  • They should rarely be needed for a dorm move, but you can contact moving and storage companies to help with bigger packing and moving jobs.
  • You could store dorm items in a unit near the school so you can easily access your dorm essentials next semester.

The Move

Be prepared to do a lot of the same things you did during the dorm move in when you move out.
  • Don't procrastinate. You can't put off a university's often firm move-out date.
  • Roommates should help each other and coordinate moving out of a dorm.
  • Get friends and family from home to come and help you.
  • Make sure you have a ride waiting for you at the right place and time. It doesn't matter if it is a moving company, a rental truck, or your mom's van, your vehicle needs to be in the right place at the right time due to the university's often limited moving schedule.
  • If you are short time and helpers, hire moving labour to make the job quicker and easier.
  • Make sure the room is mostly cleaned before you move all of your things out for inspection purposes.
  • Give the room a final look after everything is done to make sure that you aren't forgetting anything or need to clean more.

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on November 26, 2014 - Moving Expert
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