Moving into a new apartment is usually stressful, but it doesn’t have to be aneurysm-inducing. It’s exciting to live in a new place, so shouldn’t moving day be fun? When friends pitch in to help you move, it’s not hard to make it a pleasurable experience (as much as it can be anyway). And don’t forget to offer a bit of thanks afterward.

Be Organized

Have you ever helped a friend move and when you arrived their apartment looked like they decided against moving? This is a great way to start the day off badly! Have all of your boxes ready to head out the door, furniture ready to be swiftly loaded into the truck bed and your old pad cleaned out so you don’t have to worry about coming back to tidy up. It might not be the most obvious way to say thanks to friends who help you move, but they’ll surely appreciate it. If you’ve done all the dirty work, all they have to worry about is getting your stuff into a truck and into your new place.

Make it a Party

Don’t ask one or two friends to help out; ask everyone you know! Heck, make a Facebook event to gather your pals to help out–but you have to make it a party. Besides having everything packed up and ready to go, have coffee, pastries, water and other treats on-hand and ready to serve. There’s nothing like a morning caffeine jolt to get the blood pumping for a big day of moving. Make sure you’ve got a case of beer chilled–or wine–and ready for the afternoon when everyone will need a bit of a pick-me-up. You’ll want to have plans for lunch and/or dinner as well. Preparation for the day is key.

Think a friendly competition may make moving day more fun? Create two teams and whoever finishes first wins a prize–anything from a gift card to free booze!

Plan an Event

Sure, everyone is going to be sleepy after a long day of moving, and you’re not going to want to dish out a load of cash, but you can look for any free or inexpensive events that are going on in your new neighborhood. From a comedy show to trivia night, thanking your friends with a night out on the town may just lock in movers for many years to come.

Why not plan an event in your new pad? Unless your furniture is piled so high that you can’t really move around it, now is the perfect time to have a party in your apartment (everything valuable is packed up!). Order a pizza, pull out some games and break in the new space with a warm welcoming party. But sometimes all you want to do is sit on the couch and relax after a long day of moving, so you can just as easily make it a low-key affair.

With preparation and help from friends, moving doesn’t have to be stressful!