Moving is a big challenge, one requiring a lot of planning, careful organization, and strength. Most moves are conducted within a very tight timeframe — typically two months, perhaps three. With little to work with, you need get everything done and done right. When it comes to packing, here’s how to pack like a pro.
- Let it go. You have a house full of items and not everything you own will be packed and sent to your new home. This is where you will want to let go of the excess, by selling, donating or throwing out what you don’t need. Limiting the amount of items you’ll be bringing with you will reduce your moving costs and have a corresponding effect of reducing the number of boxes you will need to acquire explains Allied Moving.
- Gather your boxes. Scores, perhaps hundreds of boxes will be needed in order to make your move. Your moving company can supply boxes, for a fee. You can also purchase boxes from an office supply store. The cost of obtaining boxes may raise your eyebrows. Happily, you can find boxes for free by visiting various retail outlets — big box stores, hardware shops, grocery retailers, warehouse stores, and local shops may have what you need. Visit these stores and ask the manager for a variety of boxes to meet your needs.
- Obtain your packing supplies. No box packing is done right without the supplies that go with them. This means you need to purchase packing tape, markers, and color stickers, the latter for identifying which rooms these boxes will be placed within your new home. As for packing material, you can use newspapers, acquire bubble wrap, and use sheets and blankets to pad the boxes.
- Pack unneeded items first. You’ll have a number of items you won’t be using again after you move. Seasonal items, some clothing pieces, and display items can be packed first. Lighter items can be placed in larger boxes; heavier items in smaller boxes.
- Tape with care. Boxes go through a lot of stress when being moved. The last thing you want is for any box to pop open on the way to your destination with the contents strewn around the moving van or in your car. The bottom of each box should be taped vertically and horizontally on the outside. On the inside, run tape along the seams to provide an extra measure of security. For fragile items, place these in smaller boxes and then place the smaller boxes in a larger box. With a generous amount of paper or bubble wrap available, you can provide a strong measure of padding to ensure that your valuables do not break.
- Mark your boxes carefully. Color coordinating your boxes is a smart way to understand what you have in each box with just one glance. For instance, blue labels might be applied to boxes heading to your son’s room — place these stickers on the top, on the bottom and on all four sides of each box. Supplement the stickers with an overview of what is in the box — books, clothes, toys — and then set the completed box to the side.
- Ask for help. Never pack alone — that’s too much work for one person. Your spouse and children can help, but don’t stop there. Ask family and friends to help too. A packing party is a great way to get the work done — schedule an afternoon to have friends over, asking them to bring boxes and filler material. You may be surprised by how much work you can complete in just a few hours with your friends helping.
Odd-sized and vulnerable items need special boxes. It would be better to invest in the right boxes to ensure your items are safe then to use boxes not suitable for the work. Your moving company may have the special boxes you need to pack a vintage dress or to handle your china.