Moving is a very stressful task. Once you’ve gotten over all the excitement that comes with a new home, you are suddenly faced with the truth that moving house is A LOT of hard work. Everything from planning out the logistics down to settling in will take the energy out of you.
Packing, in particular, is often considered as one of the most stressful and challenging parts of the move. Some people even say that your packing process will determine the success of your house move as a whole. Hence, it is crucial to make sure the task of packing goes as smoothly as possible.
To help you make the moving process pleasant and stress-free, we’ve come up with a list of packing tips for moving which you may find useful during the entire process.
Make A List Of All The Packing Materials You Will Need
You don’t want to be the person who figures out they’re a few boxes, wrapping sheets, and bubble wrap pieces short, halfway through the process. Worse, you don’t want to be the one who realises they would have been better off splurging for the larger boxes in the first place! Either way, though, what’s important is that everything is packed up nice and securely.
Here’s a sample list of things you may need for packing your stuff:
- Padding and bubble wrap for fragile and breakable items
- Wrapping sheets, newspaper or blank sheets
- A small knife and scissors
- High-quality tapes (packing tape, clear tape, masking tape)
- Permanent marker or labelling stickers
- Plastic bags
- High-quality cardboard boxes
For valuable, fragile, and expensive objects, you may opt to consult a professional or carry them carefully yourself. To be sure that all your belongings stay safe and secure, invest in high-quality, sturdy packing boxes instead of reusing old boxes that may already be damaged.
If you are still looking for packing supplies, you may check out WhatStorage’s Packing Boxes and Moving Supply Shop. If you are not keen on purchasing brand new boxes, you may read this Guide on Free Moving Boxes.
Start Packing Ahead Of Time
Packing well in advance is a moving house pro move that not many know about.
By giving yourself more than enough time to pack our belongings, you are helping minimise the stress that it usually brings about. Do not put the task off until the last minute, as doing so will only make it more challenging and frustrating.
If you are planning on doing this, do not forget to stick to your desired packing schedule. After all, you wouldn’t want to end up so far from being done just days before moving day!
Declutter Your Stuff And Sort Out Your Belongings
Before you start putting everything in boxes, ask yourself what items will fit well in your new location, what items you no longer use, which one is broken, and which ones you will want to bring with you. Check out WhatStorage’s Decluttering Guide here.
For the things you don’t want or don’t need, consider donating it or giving it to someone else. Your friends or chosen charity may benefit from all those old clothes and other items. As for furniture that you don’t think will be a fit in your new place, especially if you are downsizing, those can be kept in a self-storage facility.
Keeping the stuff you don’t need, but don’t necessarily want to get rid of in a storage unit only means you won’t have to worry about your new home getting too cramped or disorganised immediately. Instead, they’ll be safe, dry, and secure in storage, waiting for the day you either find the need for them or decide to give them up completely.
You may also sell your stuff in a yard or garage sale, or better yet, online. Aside from getting rid of these things, you’ll also be making some money you could use to shoulder your moving cost. Here are some of the most common moving expenses one may incur while moving house.
Create A Packing System
To make sure that you move from one place to another as easily and as efficiently as possible, create a system for packing up your stuff. For example, place heavier, bulkier items at the bottom of the box and fragile items or lighter items on top. Fill the box to the brim.
You will also want to start packing up rooms and items that you use the least and work your way up to the ones that you use daily. Pack up one room at a time to prevent any confusion during the packing process.
There are two ways you can go about the packing up of your house. First, you may go through every room, declutter, and pack up every single one, or you may designate a sorting and packing station in your home. Ideally, this should be a spacious, empty room where you can put the boxes, containers, and wrapping supplies.
Do not seal your boxes the moment you fill them up. Only close and seal the boxes after you have finished packing every item. You never know which items you’ll find in a different room!
Remember to label your boxes legibly and adequately BEFORE you seal each one. If possible, you may also number your boxes and list down the contents of each one to properly keep track of all your belongings.
Make Use Of Packing Alternatives
Sometimes, you don’t have to throw your old clothes right away. If you intend on throwing away some of your old clothing, hold off on that and use them to wrap and protect your belongings instead. While it will still be ideal to have bubble wraps and packing peanuts on hand for some of your more fragile belongings, you may use old fabric for sturdy, not-so-fragile pieces.
In place of packing peanuts, you may use torn up pieces of newspaper or lots of cotton balls. You may also use your socks and towels to keep your glassware and other breakables secured. The key here is to ensure these items do not cling, clang, or bump into each other in transit.
Meanwhile, if you own any luggage or big duffle bags, you may use those to store your clothes and delicates instead of putting them in a box or some plastic bags. You may also use spare luggage to carry books or other items that won’t be easily damaged.
Consider keeping your clothes and other delicates stored in the dresser drawers if you are taking your dresser with you. Tape the drawers shut to be sure nothing falls out during the move. You may also use this method for the stuff in your side table drawer if there aren’t valuable items that may get damaged in transit.
As for your photographs and other small mementos, you may store them in a big food container or a plastic crate to keep them clean and dry during the move. By doing this, you’ll be packing twice the amount of stuff all in one box!
Lastly, if you have expensive jewellery, keep them in the jewellery box and store it in the car with you or in between your clothes, or pillows and linens in a container or luggage.
Consider Dismantling Or Taking Apart Bulkier And Heavier Items
Some furniture pieces, as well as hardware goods and electronics, can be taken apart with no harm done. Put all of the smaller items in ziploc bags and the bigger parts in boxes with packing peanuts. Label each bag and box, and you’ll be good to go. This will not only save space but also decrease the chances of your belongings getting damaged.
Keep Everything Clean And Organised
Professional movers expect your home to be organised, this makes their job, and yours, more manageable. Start by cleaning out each room, starting with the one that has the most junk. If you don’t plan on using your drawers to transport your stuff, empty them before loading them into the moving truck.
Also, check for stray items between couch cushions, under static fixtures, and in all the cabinets, closets, and storage areas like the shed, the garage, the basement, and the attic.
Identify Which Items You Need To Carry Personally
It is a good idea to keep your essentials packed in a separate box or container. By doing so, you will have easy access to them, and will therefore not have to dig through huge boxes for the stuff you will need on your first night in your new home.
Snacks, essentials, and expensive items should be carried personally in small boxes. This does not only ensure the safety of these items but also ensures that you are well-equipped for your first night in a new place. If you are currently on medication (pills, injections, and syrups), make sure to carry them in your bag or purse at all times in case of an emergency.
You may also want to keep your electronics, gadgets, and chargers with you to make sure that no one else but yourself is liable for any damage such items may encounter during the move.
Also, consider carrying some tools that you may need when you get to your new home. You may not find a need for it immediately, but having it on hand when you do is much better than having to dig through your whole life in boxes.
Keep These Tips In Mind
These “packing do-nots” are crucial. Not adhering to them, may transform your packing and overall moving experience into a total nightmare. To avoid these from happening, here are some things you may want to remember:
- Do not use old, fragile boxes
- Do not pack wet items that might damage the box
- Do not leave your boxes unlabelled.
- Do not underestimate your need for packing supplies
- Do not pack highly flammable materials in a box with all your other things
- Do not pack glass bottles filled with liquids
- Do not pack fine jewellery and other expensive items with the rest of your belongings
Keep The Important Documents Organised
Moving to a new location is not all about packing boxes. It is also about keeping track of all of the paperwork involved, including the necessary permits, contracts or agreements with the moving company, a list of things you will donate, how much money you made from the items you sold, etc. Put all these documents, plus other documents like insurance forms, receipts, medical records, and hotel reservations, in one folder.
Having these all together is extremely important because all of your belongings will be in boxes, and not having these documents in hand may cost you some time and money. Also, make sure that your folder is stored somewhere you can easily access. Put the folder in your bag or somewhere in your car.
Putting some cash for tipping the movers in this folder is also a good idea, as movers will often help you do more than what is required of them.
Coordinate With Your Professional Movers
If you are working with a man and van or removals company, coordinate with them. Find out what kind of items they offer insurance for, which items they’re allowed to store in their truck (Flower pots, flammable items, hazardous materials, and pets are usually not allowed), and how much work are they being paid to be part of. Will they only be loading and unloading the boxes of the truck or can they put every box in its designated room? Such information will save you a lot of time and a lot of stress on moving day.
If you are unsure about how a moving company can help you, here is a guide on what they can do. You may also check out WhatStorage’s List of Moving Company Services and Quick Guide on Removals Costs. Lastly, be sure to check out multiple moving companies in your area before choosing one to help you out with your big move!