Long-distance moving can be extremely stressful! But that is only if you do not have the right tools, tips, and moving advice at hand. That’s where we come in! This guide will help you master one of the most important parts of your relocation: the packing!
Reduce your moving stress by knowing exactly how to pack efficiently and manage the entire process like a pro. Even if you hire full-service movers, the chances are you are still going to need to do some packing. What boxes will you need? Do you have a list of packing supplies? How do you best protect the items that you do pack? We are here to answer every one of those questions – and more!
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- The packing process demands careful planning and a few clever tricks to run smoothly
- A happy couple packing their stuff in boxes
Create a packing supply checklist
As mentioned, even if you are hiring movers, you are still going to need to do some of the packing yourself. Many people prefer to do their own packing regardless of whether they hire full-service movers or not. Others only hire a moving truck. Nonetheless this is the ultimate packing guide – and will help you master this humongous task.
What packing supplies will you need?
It’s best to start, well, at the very start. And that is getting all the supplies you need to ensure your packing process is as streamlined as possible.
Packing supply checklist
You are going to need different size boxes, protective material, and more! It’s best to have a list to work with and here it is.
Various size boxes:
- small boxes
- medium boxes
- large boxes
- extra large boxes
- divided boxes
- plastic bins, if you plan to reuse them for storage
- shipping tape
- duct tape
- masking tape
- painter’s tape
- tape dispensers
- Box cutters
- Sticker labels
- Sharpie permanent markers
- Colored markers or colored stickers for room color coding
- Hand truck or dolly
- Rope, twine, tie-downs, and bungee cords
- bubble wrap
- packing paper
- old linens
DIY Tip: Use blankets to protect furniture, mirrors, and TVs
A glance at different types of boxes
Space-saver wardrobe boxes – When moving, there is always the issue of moving all the clothes. But it does not need to be an issue as wardrobe boxes are a real thing and it really does make things easier. Packing clothes, unpacking clothes, and re-hanging clothes is just a time-consuming method that is outdated. Wardrobe boxes allow you to simply transfer your clothes. Saving you time and hassle.
Boxes for electronics – Electronics need extra protection during a move and there are boxes available exactly for that. If you want to ensure all your electronics are safely packed for the relocation consider using boxes that are specifically designed for electronics.
Plastic moving boxes – If you are looking for a more robust option to the classic cardboard box, you could invest in some plastic moving boxes. They offer more protection and you can always re-use them as storage containers once you have relocated.
Mirror boxes – Mirrors and picture frames are delicate items that are easily breakable. Instead of spending money on replacing these, rather invest in boxes designed for mirrors and picture frames.
Glassware moving boxes – Just another specialty box that is worth the buy. Protect all your glassware with boxes that are designed to avoid breakage. Or you might end up replacing many of your glassware items.
TV boxes – In most households, the TV is the most loved item. And luckily you can protect it by buying a TV box when you relocate. Available in various sizes, you can protect your TV during a move.
How to pack…
- Knowing how to pack is the first step of mastering the biggest task of your relocation
- Woman holding a box.
The ‘how to pack’ part is so very important. And that’s why we are going to tell you exactly how to pack these specific items.
Packing Your Kitchen & Fragile Items
It’s easy to say that your kitchen is probably the hardest room of the house to pack up. Here is your step-by-step guide to packing your kitchen successfully.
Step 1: You need to get organized
The golden rule of packing is to first get rid of what you do not need. You can do this by giving it to friends and family or donating it to your local soup kitchen or hosting a yard sale. The main aim is to get rid of what you do not need or no longer use.
Step Two: Get your packing materials ready
Heavy-duty boxes in a variety of sizes are best suited for packing your kitchen. You will also need packaging paper, tape, and markers. Have a look at the specific dividers made for packing kitchenware. It will make things easier for you.
As a general estimate, you will need the following boxes for packing your kitchen:
- five small boxes
- ten medium boxes
- five large boxes
- three extra-large boxes
- three rolls of packing paper
Step Three: Set essentials aside
Although packing as soon as possible is always a good idea as there is a lot of it to be done. Don’t forget that you will still need a few essential items.
Set aside a plate, cup, and a set of utensils, and a couple of bowls for each family member. You will also need an essential dish towel, dish soap, and a sponge. All these items can be packed into a separate box on the day of your move.
Step Four: Start NOW!
The most important thing is to get started. The sooner, the better. Packing your kitchen a rush will, without a doubt, leave you breaking many of your kitchenware. This is a process that you should rather follow through to the ‘t’ to ensure the safety of your belongings.
How To Pack Kitchenware
Glasses and stemware: Remember those specialty dividers we mentioned? Those are perfect for glasses and stemware. They also fit into standard boxes. You shouldn’t stack anything on glass and ensure that there is no room for movement in the box.
Pots and pans: You will need a large or medium-sized box for pots and pans. The best method is to stack pots and pans together. Nestled the smaller pots into the larger ones. It’s best to place packing paper between them. Glass lids should be wrapped in bubble wrap or two layers of packing paper.
Plates and bowls: Any breakable plates and bowls should be wrapped. These items are easily stackable, just ensure that it is secure and adequately protected with bubble wrap or packing wrap.
Knives: Knives are a hazard, so you want to get this right. Each knife should be wrapped in packing paper and a dishcloth. Use rubber bands to secure it and remember to place knives on their side.
Tips For Packing Your Shoes
Moving presents so many challenges. If you hire a full-service moving company or not, the chances are, you are going to pack your own shoes. And we are going to tell you exactly how.
Here are 4 easy steps to packing shoes:
- Shoes that have shoeboxes, should be packed back in the box. If they are quite valuable to you, consider wrapping each shoe in a piece of packing paper to avoid scuffing.
- Shoe boxes can be packed into a medium or large-sized box.
- No shoeboxes? Wrap each pair in a sheet of packing paper.
- Label the box to make it easier to find later.
Tips For Packing Wine Bottles
Concerned about how you should pack your wine? Here are some tips…
- Keep in mind that opened bottles cannot be shipped.
- To prevent oxidation or spoilage you need to keep the cork wet. Therefore, you should pack red and white wines upside down or on their side.
- Sparkling wines (or Champagne) should be packed upright.
TIP: Do not open for at least seven days after the move. Due to the constant movement of the wine, you might lose some flavor if you were to open it immediately.
How To Pack Your Boxes
You are going to need to know how to pack moving boxes if, especially if you are hiring a DIY moving truck. Once you have packed all the items into a box you need to:
- Seal it and label it
- Put the heaviest moving boxes at the bottom
- Moving boxes should be stacked like bricks
Tips For Packing Electronics
Electronics are expensive! Packing them for relocation is going to be the most important step you take to ensure that it makes it to the other side in one piece. Let’s look at some tips for packing electronics.
Look at the product manual
The manufacturers’ guidelines are the best place to start. Especially if there is any storage involved. You can look at the manual or visit their website, they know best how to protect the respective electronic item.
Do you still have the original boxes?
Definitely use the original boxes if you can. But add extra protection if and where possible. You can always invest in some specialty boxes, such as TV boxes.
Wrap electronics in protective material, especially if it will be in storage for some time.
Storage temperature is important!
Electronics should be stored in a climate-controlled environment. The manufacturer guidelines should help you out with this.
Moving inventory list
Usually, electronics come with various components. Create an inventory list of each item to make things easier when assembling.
Packing & Moving Hacks
Now, we get to the interesting part! Moving and packing hacks that will make you look like a pro. Use these hacks to make your move easy and simple. And we must say, some of these ideas are simply ingenious.
Lightweight items can be shrink-wrapped together…
Pillows, blankets, and other items that are otherwise large can be shrink-wrapped. This is a fantastic space-saver hack.
Cover bottles with any form of liquid in plastic
During a move, almost anything can happen. Place items that have any liquid in a plastic bag to avoid it spilling on any other items.
Pack dishes sideways
Dishes are less likely to break if they are placed on their side and it is also a great way to save space.
Afraid your necklaces might tangle?
String it through a toilet roll to minimize the chances of it tangling.
Afraid your necklaces might tangle?
String it through a toilet roll to minimize the chances of it tangling.
Label both sides of the boxes
You should label the top and the side. Spending time looking for a label is unnecessary with this nifty little hack.
Pool noodles work wonders!
You can use pool noodles (cut accordingly) to protect mirrors and picture frames and probably a whole host of other things.
The tape X hack
Tape and X across mirrors. It offers extra protection and it actually works!
Have any binder clips around?
Place these over razor place. Viola! What a great idea.
Create box handles
Lifting boxes can be quite hard and there will be a lot of that happening. Cut handles into boxes (if they don’t have them) to make it easier to lift and move around.
Balance your washer
Stuff the drum of your washer with towels. This will prevent it from moving, bumping and rotating, and any potential damage.
The ‘camel clutch’
Instead of carrying items in front of you, rather carry items behind you, against your back. You’ll thank us later for that hack!
How To Help Seniors Pack For A Move
- Seniors will require additional resources and assistance during relocation. This is how you can help!
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Seniors require special assistance when it comes to relocating. The stress factor and the emotional side of things might be overwhelming for an elderly person. A well-organized move is crucial to ensure a smooth transition for seniors relocating. With all the additional factors to consider when moving seniors, it’s worthwhile having a look at how you can help seniors who are relocating.
Moving stress for seniors can be quite traumatizing. And as a result, it might be up to you to lend a hand. Here are some tips to help you do exactly that!
Minimize moving stress
Your first priority is to do everything possible to reduce moving stress for seniors relocating. From relaxing activities to observing the well-being of the senior. There is a lot to think of.
On that note, let’s look at how you can help seniors pack while reducing stress levels.
A sense of autonomy
It’s important to allow the senior a sense of autonomy. You can do this by including them in the decision-making of the packing. This is especially important when it comes to downsizing. The senior should be able to decide, which items to part with, and which they would like to keep.
Collect boxes and packing supplies
This is not a task fit for an elderly person. If you are buying boxes, you could simply have them delivered. If you are keener on free boxes, you should take on the task. We have already looked at the packing supplies inventory list. Use the list to get all the packing and moving supplies the person/s might need.
Do you intend on using professional packers or full-service movers? To make things easier, you should be in charge of booking whichever type of moving service you will be using. This will take a great deal of stress off the senior/s who are moving.
Get friends & family to help pack
Perhaps you are relying on friends and family to help with the relocation. Go ahead and ask for help! Seniors are usually more than happy to have company!
Avoid These Packing Mistakes
Packing mistakes happen all the time! The result of it is that you use far too much space, unnecessarily. Packing is practically an art form. Hence why you need this packing guide to make it through the enormous task!
Let’s dig into the common packing mistakes people make!
Not enough planning and time
This is the biggest packing mistake people make. It makes the packing process harder than it needs to be, probably waste space and potentially risk damage to your stuff as you did not have enough time to ensure safe packing. Avoid making this mistake by having a packing timeline and simply by using this guide.
Not getting enough supplies
Before you head out to the store to get your moving and packing supplies, have a good idea of what you need. Evaluate all your belongings to estimate how many boxes you will need, what sizes, etc. Once you have a fair idea, add more supplies to that. Not having enough supplies does not only drag out the process but might also cause damage or loss to your items.
Not getting rid of stuff
Always get rid of unwanted or unused stuff before packing. You will be paying for the packing and movement of those items. Reduce moving costs by getting rid of everything you do not want or do not use.
Not securing items effectively
This is how a lot of goods are either broken or damaged. It simply needed to be secured more. Fill the gaps in boxes with packing paper, bubble wrap, dish clothes, or anything else you deem appropriate.
How To Host a Successful Moving Sale
If you want to cut moving costs, you should seriously consider hosting a moving sale. Why? You get rid of unwanted goods, which you would have to pay to have moved and you make some extra cash while selling these goods. Moreso, the benefits of downsizing are endless.
You first need to host a successful moving sale to reap the rewards!
- You need to set a date and time. You should do this in advance. Spring is usually a good time. But if that’s not possible for you, perhaps an indoor garage sale would work if you find yourself in the middle of winter.
- Get permission. You need to check with your local authorities if you are permitted to host a yard sale. become
- You need an inventory. Once you have established what you would like to get rid of, you will need a detailed inventory list of all the items up for sale.
- Don’t be shy to advertise. Effectively, you need to market your yard sale or your turn-out is probably going to be rather disappointing.
- Fair pricing. You need to set fair pricing on all your items. If you are asking too much, you won’t sell the items, which leaves the entire process counterproductive. People like bargains – keep that in mind.
- Get creative. Ensure that the items are displayed in an appealing or eye-catching way. The point is to sell the items! Offer bulk buy options. You want to get rid of ALL the items. Offering bulk sales will help you do exactly that.
- Refreshments attract people! Spice up your yard sale with some inexpensive refreshments. The longer and happier you keep people there, the more they are likely to buy your items.
Eco-Friendly Packing Tips
- There are ways to ensure you pack and move as eco-friendly as possible and we are going to share these tips with you
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Moving can leave quite the carbon footprint behind. From boxes to tape and bubble wrap, a lot of products are used and then discarded. When you realize how much just becomes trash – the picture becomes clear. We waste far too much. But there is a better way. A more eco-friendly way!
Less is more – Eco-friendly tip number one. The less you have, the less packing and moving material and products you have to use. It is the best way to combat overusing products for items you do not intend to use at all.
Recycle! – Recycle everything you can during preparation for your move. Electronics can be recycled using the EPA. Check your local recycling centers to recycle all sorts of other waste.
Used boxes – Before popping out to buy a tonne of boxes, check your alternatives. You can get reusable boxes or rent boxes from several sources such as ZippGo, Bungo Box, or Bin It. Alternatively, you can collect boxes from local shops.
Eco-alternative packing materials – Ditch conventional packing supplies for more eco-friendly options. For example, if you know you require plenty of bubble wrap, opt for companies like Eco-Friendly Bubble Wrap and do your part for the environment.
Forget about plastic bags – Plastic bags are used by the dozens during a move. But there are fantastic, eco-friendly alternatives. Cotton and canvas bags work just as well. They are reusable for longer – and they are not as harsh on the environment. It’s a win-win.
Get FREE Packing Boxes
Relocating is expensive. No matter which way you look at it. And saving on moving costs, in any way, is a win! Boxes are not cheap and we are going to show you how you can get boxes for FREE, and further reduce your moving costs!
Try your local stores
The trick is to go on the right day of the week and you will probably be able to get more free boxes than you need.
Moving boxes hack
We have one word for you – Craigslist! You will find plenty of free boxes and it simply couldn’t be any easier. Freecycle is another great option. Join your local group/s and search for “free boxes”.
Social media is heaven for free boxes. Join your local groups, check the Marketplace, post an ad and get as many free boxes as you need.
Different Types of Moving Services
As you will soon learn, there are various moving services available. You might need some of it or all of it. Here are some of the moving services you can expect to find.
Local and long-distance moves require furniture transport. You might use full-service movers, rent a moving truck, hire a POD, or a container. Either way, at some point, all these options will require furniture transport.
Long Distance Movers
Apartment movers offer all-inclusive services to make your relocation manageable. Some might only be able to operate locally and you need to be a licensed cross-country mover to offer those particular services.
In the marketplace of today, offices are constantly moving. However, the move needs to be as swift as possible to ensure you are up and running in no time. Hire office/commercial movers to help you get it all done in record time.
Speciality moving services
Some pieces of furniture, equipment or objects that need moving are considered specialty moving services. These include but are not limited to:
If you want to pack like a pro use all these tips and tricks! Packing is one of the most essential chores of relocating. It is also an important step to ensure all your belongings stay safe during the relocation. If it all seems too much, keep in mind that you can always hire professional packers.