Packing For a Move

Today, we're going to discuss how to pack for a move. We've already talked about how to prepare your house to be sold, preparing for a move, but how do you pack for a move? There's a lot involved. I have a nice little list for you. You've found the new home and it's time to pack.

You're going to be able to get all this stuff that you've acquired over the years, and you'll be able to pack it just fine. It can actually be a good time to clean, as well. Declutter, simplify your life. What are the hardest rooms to pack? Garages and kitchens usually rank as the hardest rooms to pack. Both rooms contain a combination of oddly shaped items, small tools, utensils, fragile material, and heavy objects or appliances that can make packing a real challenge. Those will be your hardest two rooms.

Where To Start?

The first thing you're going to want to do is clean the house. The simplest way to make packing easier is to reduce the number of things you need to move. Set aside some time to declutter and get rid of unwanted or unneeded items that can save you time and reduce your moving costs, because now you don't have to pack them, and nobody has to move them.

Not only will you arrive at your new destination with only the items that you need and find useful, but you won't have to pay for somebody to move anything that you don't want or need, and you won't waste the unnecessary time unpacking materials, packing those things up. First of all, we're going to decide what to keep and what to get rid of, right? Sort your belongings in four categories-- Keep, Sell, donate, and Trash.

Sell or donate anything that's in good condition and trash anything that's just junk. Then you can get rid of clothes that don't fit or that you don't wear. Don't forget to include your closet in decluttering your home. If you haven't worn something in the last year, chances are you won't wear it in the next year, unless it's just one of those seasonal items. Instead of taking it with you and taking up valuable real estate in your moving boxes, consider donating it to someone who will wear it.

You can also have a garage sale, to get rid of the unwanted items that are still usable. You can donate them or have a garage sale. Take all those items you've already deemed non-essential and have a garage sale, or list them online to make some extra money for your move. That'll help pay for your moving expenses, right? Think about what you don't want on the moving truck. A lot of people don't do that. They just start packing.

Essential Items Kit

While you're going through your belongings, you might want to set some things aside for special treatment during your move. Pack your essentials separately. For long moves, you may want to make sure that you keep a bag of essentials by your side, especially if you're traveling to a new home separately from your moving truck. You'll want these essentials for any necessary overnight stays. Once you're at your new home, you don't want to unpack big, big boxes before being able to brush your teeth, right?

Get your toiletries and your medications, things like that. You'll you want to consider what items you need in the first week or so after you're moved. Pack those things in their own boxes and label them as "essential items." For instance, you'll probably want to put some toilet paper, shower curtains, towels, hand soap, things like that, toothpaste, toiletries.

If you're working from home, you should also consider unpacking a mobile office. Keep your laptop, tablet, charging cables, important documents with you, and that lets you keep your work-related emergencies easy to handle while you're moving, if you're not able to really take off for work. Also, having those things easily identifiable, you can unpack them quickly once you get to the new place. Designate a "do not pack" zone. Designate an area for non-essential items that you don't want packed or loaded onto the moving truck. Think of items of greater importance or sentimental value, like your jewelry, family photos, or financial documents. Those are things you probably want to move yourself and not have somebody else handling, and you don't want them to get lost.

Identify any items you'll need to find easily at your new home. Load these items last when you pack the moving trucks, so they're the first thing you get unloaded. This will ensure important items are easy to find when you arrive.

You can ship books via USPS. Books weigh a lot, and professional movers charge by the pound, sometimes. Instead of using a mover for those, consider shipping books through the postal service, as media mail. Visit the postal services website to see if a price per pound is cheaper than one offered by your mover, or throw them in your own car, if that's the way you want to go with that too.

Packing Plan

Let's get organized and make a plan before you start packing. Having a packing plan removes stress and helps avoid frantic, last-minute throwing things in the boxes, all willy-nilly. Distribute packing tasks so that you don't get overwhelmed or have leftover things to pack on the very day of your move.

This may include taking time off from work, scheduling around the delivering of packing materials and home inspections, and things like that. Let's consider using a portable storage unit, or a moving pod. I've used one of those. I loved it. A portable storage unit can make packing and loading less stressful and more flexible for you. A container gets dropped off at your property, and you can load as much as fits in there and on your own schedule, or you can hire professionals to load that for you.

When you're ready to move, your pod can be transported to your new home. I've used that before and it worked very well. I got to put a lot of things in there. Everything went very smoothly. I was very happy with it. Know what items the movers won't take. That's just as important, right? If you're using a professional moving service to load or transport your items, there are certain things they won't be able to transport for you. Pack the items separately and give them away, or dispose of them properly.

Some of the commonly restricted things are aerosol cans, ammunition and firearms, batteries, charcoal, kerosene, lighter fluid, fire extinguishers, any kinds of fuel, gasoline, oil, paints and varnishes, paint thinners, wood stain, things like that. All of those things are prohibited. There's probably more than this list, but just keep those things in mind, because those are common.

Packing Supplies

Now, you're going to gather your packing supplies. Make sure you have whatever packing supplies you'll need well ahead of your moving day. Your exact needs will depend on your situation, but here are some of the basic things you're going to need. Boxes, cushioning, trash bags, markers, labels, tape, plastic wrap, and moving blankets. I highly suggest you get some colored tapes, different colored tapes, one for each room. Nowadays, you can get duct tape, because it will stick to those boxes good.

Different patterns, or different color duct tape, and you can slap a piece of tape on the side and the corner of the boxes, to color code them for which room they belong in, as well as the packing tape, and a tape dispenser. The packing tape dispenser, with the big handle, priceless. Worth it.

Packing Ideas

Look for ways to make packing easier. Many of your friends, relatives, and neighbors will offer packing tips, but sort through these ideas and find the ones that work best for you, because not all of them will apply to you, or work for you. A lot of packing time can be spent on clothing. Clothing takes up a lot of space in a moving truck if you're not careful, so make sure to save as much room as possible, and only bring the things that fit or that you're going to use.

That's part of the decluttering, because it does take up a lot of space. You can hire packers to pack for you. Hire movers that will pack your things. It's an obvious way to make packing easier. Consider calling professionals if you're faced with a tight deadline, or you just don't want to do it. Most moving companies have a full-service option that's included in the packing services. You can also use trash bags and hangers for transporting clothes.

If you're moving on a budget, try the trash bag method. Put trash bags around your clothes while they're still hanging in the closet, and that will help protect them. That's genius. Tie up the tip, leave the hangers sticking out, and voilà, DIY closet moving. Perfect. Now consider splurging for wardrobe boxes, if you can. They're very handy, makes packing much quicker. If you have the money.

These boxes cost $10 to $20 each, depending on the height. They have these bars that you can put into the box, and you put your hangers on them, so it goes directly from your closet to the box, and they're hanging. This makes packing and unpacking clothes much faster and easier. Also, I like to use the little space at the bottom of those boxes, underneath the shirts or whatever's hanging. Throw scarfs or socks, or anything that's light-weight in there. Your earmuffs, or your whatever, things that are light. That's another way to save some real estate in those boxes, without making them too heavy.

You can pack your suitcases. Most people have suitcases. Utilizing the suitcases helps cut down on spending on boxes. If your suitcases have wheels, It's a great hack for transporting particularly heavy items. Maybe for your books.

Start Packing

Let's follow a packing plan. Now that you're organized and you have a plan together, it's time to start packing. Try to give yourself more time than you think to avoid rushing and creating more stress than necessary. You know it's going to take more time. It always does. Plan for more time. If you're using movers, make sure you have everything ready before they show up, to avoid paying them while you finish packing. You have to just do everything in advance and have everything planned.

Packing Inventory

As you pack, assign each box, and number and label it. Record each box with its corresponding number. List what's in it. Check off each number when the boxes are loaded on, and when they're unloaded from the truck. This will help you identify lost items much easier than to file a claim if your professional movers happen to lose something or damage something, it's hard to do that kind of thing in a move. You're already so busy, you're already so tired. It is great to do, but it's just another tool that you can use. It's not for everybody.

Label Boxes

Label boxes to identify unpacking priority. Then you number boxes while you're making a packing inventory, identify priority for unpacking them. You could write an A on the very important boxes, and a B on the boxes you'll need within the next week. Then a C for ones that don't need to be unpacked anytime soon. That's prioritizing your box.

Pack one room completely before moving on. Sometimes, items like jewelry are more difficult to pack than others, and it's tempting to leave those things for later. Resist the urge, and forge ahead, by getting one room completely done and packed before you move on, you'll avoid leaving only the most difficult things for the last minute. Do it strategically, one room at a time.

Pack With Care

Pack dishes with care. Your most breakable items deserve special care. Use the extra packing paper. and wrap each one individually. Mark the boxes as fragile so that the movers know they have to take extra care with them. Used towels and clothes as special packing material, right? You have towels, linens, things like that. They make great fillers for boxes. Use washcloths and socks instead of packing peanuts to keep things from shifting around in the boxes. There you go. Wrap fragile items in thick towels to provide extra padding. This will help you use fewer boxes and save money on packing supplies. Finally, leave items in drawers or containers. If you can, leave the lightweight items in drawers, or dressing drawers.

Use heavy-duty stretch wrap to wrap around the outside of each piece of furniture to prevent the drawers from opening when you're carrying the furniture. Then you have all your little your junk drawer, right? If you have a desk with a junk drawer, just leave the junk in there, wrap it up with a plastic wrap. Use the kitchen plastic wrap around silverware trays, to keep the silverware in place. You don't even have to take it out of the organizer.

You can use just basic plastic cling wrap, plastic wrap for small or lightweight items, but around furniture, you want to use the heavy-duty stretch wrap. Wrapping your desks or dressers will ensure the drawers do not open. Again, if you have lightweight things in the drawers, leave it there. Helps things go a lot faster.

I hope you found this information useful. Visit these websites for more help with packing for a move:

https://www.homedepot.com/c/moving-box-calculator

https://www.mymove.com/moving-checklists/packing-checklist/

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