Preparing to move your home is invariably a daunting task. What’s the best way to pack your belongings efficiently and effectively—so you don’t risk losing or breaking anything? Use our tips from the packing pros to be sure your next move is successful and all your belongings are packed the right way.
Try The Dresser Trick
Here’s a great moving secret: You don’t have to take everything out of your dressers when you move. Lightweight items, such as clothing and linens, can stay in your dresser drawers when you pack. In fact, it’s a smart idea to put a clean set of sheets, towels and pajamas in each dresser so that you’ll know right where they are when you get to your new digs.
Whether you’ll be the one lugging the boxes or not, it’s wise to pack heavier items, such as books, in easier-to-handle smaller boxes. Separate books by size so that you can pick and choose the right size and shape to fill each box snugly.
Items of similar size, shape and weight pack up well and travel well together. Records and CDs fit well together. As do linens and clothes, pictures, and even lampshades (which can be fit one into the other, saving space and offering each other protection).
Whenever you can, tape a small item to a larger piece so it won’t get lost during your big move (a finial with the lamp it goes with or a remote control with a TV, for instance). If that won’t work, wrap the small item in a piece of colored tissue paper so that it stands out amidst the packing paper and doesn’t accidentally get thrown out. You can also put the tissue-wrapped item in a small plastic bag and tuck it into a box.
The Sneaky Sheet Secret
You knew those old sheets would come in handy someday, and that day has arrived! Fitted sheets are a great way to protect mattresses (put on two; one on the front and one on the back) and other furniture. Wrap them around upholstered chairs or other small furnishings. They’re easy to wash (or toss) when your move is completed and you’ve finally arrived at your new house
Use Original Boxes Whenever You Can
Smart shoppers (and movers) know to save the original boxes that came with electronic equipment. If your computer or TV can go back into the protective pod it came in, it’s sure to survive the move in good shape. It’s even smarter to put electronics in a second box to give them some extra padding and protection. And then you can then label the box with the contents and room destination. The same goes for delicate trinkets and home décor accessories.
Don’t Skimp on Packing Fillers
There’s always a great need for soft stuff during a big home move—to tuck into a box to keep it snug, or to provide a buffer between two pieces of furniture in the truck. Clothing that doesn’t fit into suitcases, boxes or dressers can do the trick. So can blankets, stuffed animal collections, pillows, and linens. Stuff them into sturdy garbage bags and you have instant padding.
When preparing for your move, be sure all boxes are numbered and labeled. Most expert home movers and packers suggest that you identify the contents of the box (“CDs”) and its ultimate destination (“Family Room”) on the top and on one side. Some homeowners really get into it and color-code by room or floor (marking all boxes destined for the basement in blue, for instance). If you’re using a professional mover, they’ll tag every box and mark it on an inventory sheet.
The Right Way to Pack Dishes
Surprisingly, the smartest way to pack dishes is not stacked on top of each other, but on edge. They are much less likely to break. Of course, they still need lots of padding with paper, dishtowels, whatever you can find to cushion the top, bottom and sides of the box. Special dish packs are also available for purchase at packing stores or from your home moving company.
Use Lots of Boxes
The more you can box, the better. That’s because it’s easier to pack similar shapes together in a truck than it is to work with unusual shapes. So maybe the floor lamps, the garden tools, and the golf clubs can each go into wardrobe boxes. Put the pots from the patio into the same size box that you’re using for table lamps. This little trick will make the job of loading the moving truck much easier. As you’re packing up your home, make sure that each box is filled to capacity and well padded. Items should not be able to shift inside or be poking out the sides.
The “Exit” Box
Reserve a box for those items that you know you’ll need the minute you arrive at your new house. A flashlight, the coffee maker and some coffee, tools you’ll need for assembly, the telephone, paper products some eating utensils, cash for quick groceries, and so on. Label it accordingly and make sure it’s last on and first off your moving truck.
Published by: Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Life